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ASD DD depressed and stressed, would counselling help(16 Posts)
DD10 was recently assessed with ASD privately, and is now very down. She went to a residential school trip to France last week, enjoyed herself tremendously but is now paying the price and meltdowns every day ever since. I feel terrible because when she barks and goes crazy at me because of a misplaced hairbrush, her hair feeling "wrong", her laptop not charged etc I tell her off. She has now written a heartbreaking letter telling me that she does not know how to express herself differently and I feel she needs some sort of counselling support, and frankly I think we should go together to try to learn to cope better with ASD. Any suggestions?
It sounds like an absolutely normal aftershock to a period of heavy duty masking. Even the most enjoyed activities take a toll and will need decent recovery time. She's done a massive thing and, in my experience, a period of easy demand-free life, which yes might mean letting things go for a bit, is essential to restore balance.
In theory I think your idea is sound but in practice I doubt you would find a therapist with the understanding and delicacy needed to robustly set you up. What about sitting down together and creating a plan and a toolkit for how you will both behave.
MOST children do behave in this way after a big trip, if you add the shock of dx and the difficulties her dx brings then I think you both could have anticipated this.
I thought this trip was a very bad idea but she really wanted to go and I didn't have the heart to not let it happen. And I was expecting and anticipating some outbursts, but what threw me yesterday was her apparent low mood. I think that for some reason she thought that finally having a diagnostic would solve everything, and, well, no, the difficulties are still there isn't it? But on the plus side the school has finally agreed to let her go to a safe room when she gets overwhelmed, and knowing that she can is helping. But she has lots of questions about ASD so I thought that having a counsellor could help answer a few. But I agree, it might be difficult to find a knowledgeable one. I am really fed up with all of that, but reading posts on this forum helps a lot as frankly some seem to have it worse. Thanks for replying
It's good she went and enjoyed it. Saving up all the overwhelm is expected! It doesn't mean she shouldn't have gone or didn't really enjoy it.
Has she seen any of Rosie King's stuff on YouTube? Her Newsround film 'My Autism and Me' and her TED Talk are a good place to start.
The problem is the vast majority of people see autism as such a huge negative burden. I wouldn't want that vibe passed on to my dd especially if she was already vulnerable. Their used to be a great feisty site called Aspies for Freedom back in the day, full of fighty pro AS sharing. I think they are long gone now but they may have moved on??
Oh and I agree that she shouldn't avoid things to escape the aftermath.
I really need to concentrate on the positives and she should be congratulated about her good behaviour during the trip. And I need to find a way of not reacting when she "barks" at me. It really presses my buttons though.
If most people heard the way my ds speaks to me at home they'd be horrified and disgusted. But I have to see beyond the words and visible behaviours to translate their real meaning. Seeing them as expressions rather than taking them at face value means I can address the real issue not the superficial presentation. So, I could probably/possibly train him not to swear at me, but then how would he show his distress? I'd rather be externalises it, even if it's horrible for me, than learns to internalise it and hide it, because it has to be expressed somehow. Often, the horribler ds is, the nicer, kinder and more helpful I need to be. I'm not saying it's easy, mind!
Sorry about the there/their that jarred!
If you can get hold of a copy of Neurotribes the first chapter (I think? the one about the cruise ship) is I think very positive, the rest is not for the faint hearted.
My gut feeling is that a sense of identity is what you need. I think on line forums are possibly the answer but how you manage that with e-safety I'm not sure. Do you know any other Aspy girls?
I really enjoyed Neurotribes. DD is desperate to meet other Aspie girls actually. We are hoping there will be at least a couple at her secondary school next year, as it is THE school in the borough for statemented DCs, we just managed to get in by chance/catchment. Polter I don't know how you deal with this. You say that you are on the spectrum yourself? I am so confused about this now, as compared to DD's struggles, my life has been a walk in the park! I now think I might have this BAP thing, and so does DH, so DD has inherited the whole package, whereas our other 2 DCs managed to avoid most of it. What doesn't help DD is that her siblings are really cool customers, just going with the flow without battling an eyelid, so she really stuck out from the word go, 45 min after she was born she started to scream her head off poor thing, and there was no way of comforting her, it was actually making things worse. It took us YEARS to realise there were sensory issues. IMO the sensory issues were the worse to deal with for a long time, now they are apparent when she gets stressed about other things.
The fact that she's embraced her autism bodes really well for her future IMHO. You 'get her' too which is a massive bonus. It has its drawbacks and there's stuff (social and self-care mostly) that I'm sure a more NT parent than me would have put effort into fostering progress, but that I don't consider important!
Ds has yet to meet another autistic kid he likes. His friends are definitely on the quirky side though
I thought counselling would help Dd3 too, she had come out of school after a very difficult time and was really low! I had to work really hard to get some funded sessions because I couldnt pay for them and then when she arrived she went into complete shutdown!
The counsellor had no idea how to work with a young person with autism and he was completely the wrong person for the job anyway!
I think your Dd did a great job of managing the holiday and now she needs recovery time.
They have so much extra to do at the end of terms, DD can more or less cope with normal days, but throw in practices for the Dance show, the Spring concert, the special Easter liturgy, let alone the actual performances for all this in the evenings and she really struggles. And so do I frankly. Thank goodness they don't have assessments at the end of this term, we would go potty, she got so stressed last term she ended up covered in hives (her whole body was red and blotchy and swollen and she was starting to feel dizzy) and we had to go to A&E where she was given high dose prednisolone. We are having a meeting with the headmistress, her form teacher and the SENCO (who is a joke apparently, but I would like to be impressed) tomorrow to try to find ways for her to manage her anxiety at school. Apart from leaving the room to go to the toilet when it all gets too much I don't really know what else to discuss. Maybe stopping moving seats about or rearranging the classroom continuously? I am so not the expert here.
Just at been watching an extraordinary documentary on Temple Grandin and counselling was a waste of time, but I imagine the counsellor was obviously not having the right approach! This being said DD has bounced back from her trip, but yesterday was invited to 2(!) birthday parties and it went really wrong in the second one not surprisingly, throwing a meltdown in the middle of it, it was a trampoline party in a hell of a place. I am now thinking I need to put my foot down and limit these activities that are clearly hazardous for a tired overstimulated DD.
Every person is shocked at the way dd and one ds talk to me at home they both mask at school dd especially (10) she fly's into violent rages and can scream in my face for hours ;-( I have secretly videoed her and her teachers are shocked.
Dd is still waiting for her ASD assessment been told it should be Oct/Nov time and cahms have refused to see her until she gets a DX.
Ds actually had a major meltdown at my friends house yesterday and after it was finally over my friend went off and did a little dance as she saw it to mean he feels safe enough in her house to let loose.
Its hard and crap we gave been refused help left right and centre and dd behaviour is just getting worse and worse.... I am terrified she is going to seriously injur one of her younger brothers, as they don't have the skills they need to know when to stay away from her :-(
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