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To be furious that BIL asked if DS has "a touch of the Aspergers"?

(30 Posts)
runningtostandstill Sat 03-Sep-11 12:38:00

That is about it. BIL asked DP whether our DS, aged 4, has 'a touch of the Aspergers'. Leaving the ludicrous phrasing aside, I was upset and surprised by the question. In my opinion DS is a regular little boy but perhaps I'm biased. He is rather loud, he has bags of energy, he can talk for England, he can be cheeky to me and DP and throws the odd tantrum. He is also funny, charming, enjoys his friends' company, gets on really well with cousins, grandparents (especially mine) aunt etc. He is shy meeting new people and takes a bit of time to warm up and is not friendly to complete strangers. He has just finished his first year of school - they start earlier here - and it went brilliantly.

worraliberty Sat 03-Sep-11 12:41:41

Why does he think he might have Aspergers?

Don't stress about the phrasing, he was probably a bit shy/awkward about asking your DP...thus putting it in a ridiculous way.

I know loads of men who have a 'touch of the flu' or a 'touch of the shits'...I think it's just the way some people express themselves.

elliejjtiny Sat 03-Sep-11 12:43:55

Sounds like a perfectly normal and lovely little boy. Maybe your BIL has "a touch of the loon"

mistressploppy Sat 03-Sep-11 12:45:19

YABU to be furious. He clearly doesn't know what he's talking about, and anyway, so what if he did?

working9while5 Sat 03-Sep-11 12:45:49

Do you think your BIL knows what it means e.g. "that's what Bill Gates has" etc? Does your son demonstrate a lot of advanced knowledge for his age, show an interest in facts etc.. other things that people who don't know a lot about AS etc assume is "a touch of the Asperger's"?

Are you in Ireland btw?

TheMagnificentBathykolpian Sat 03-Sep-11 12:46:49

YABU to be furious. Aspergers isn't an insult. Yes, 'a touch of the aspergers' was a - different grin way to phrase it, but he didn't insult your son, he asked your partner if there was an issue.

Perhaps he thought there was.

runningtostandstill Sat 03-Sep-11 12:47:42

Well I don't really know why he thinks that and that is what bugging me. When I asked DP what he said he told BIL that he didn't think so and school hadn't said anything either. And that was apparently the end of the conversation. So I am not sure and have been racking my brains to think why he asked. We saw him and DS cousins a week or so ago, kids played in the park and had great fun. DS was probably not very friendly with BIL, we only see each other a couple of times a year so he doesn't know him really well.

KaFayOLay Sat 03-Sep-11 12:48:31

There is no shame if he does have Asprergers is there?

Does your BiL have children? If he has and is comparing them to his or other children, maybe he has valid concerns.

I would ask him what particularly caused him to ask that question.

runningtostandstill Sat 03-Sep-11 12:49:55

No, I know it is not an insult. Sorry if it came across like that.

GwendolineMaryLacey Sat 03-Sep-11 12:50:23

Your DS sounds exactly like DD except she's younger. I have no concerns about her, what exactly does your oh so knowledgeable BIL base this diagnosis on?

grumpypants Sat 03-Sep-11 12:52:05

i can see why you would be a bit unhappy that your bil would suggest your ds wasn't totally 'normal' - noone wants to think their child stands out particularly as being different.
either you agree with him, and think about next steps, or you write it off.
fwiw, a relative recently asked me if i thought my ds was on the autistic spectrum - funnily enough she chose the wrong ds to diagnose!

runningtostandstill Sat 03-Sep-11 12:52:47

BIL has 3 kids, all of whom are very nice but I don't think he is in anyway an expert. Apparently a neighbour of his had his child recently diagnosed with AS. I just don't know why he would ask and it has upset me as it had nevr crossed my mind.

spookshowangellovesit Sat 03-Sep-11 12:54:07

argh this kind of thing drives me insane, its like people who say i am a bit ocd. perhaps your bil does have some concerns about your son...is he a child care professional? does he have any knowledge of what behaviour children that are on the AS would display?
or is he just being an ignorant idiot?

worraliberty Sat 03-Sep-11 12:54:20

Gwendoline Her BIL didn't make a diagnosis, he simply asked a questions about his Nephew.

VeronicaCake Sat 03-Sep-11 12:57:27

I sympathise with being sensitive but I agree with everyone who says having AS is not something to be offended by. I'd just write it off as BIL being a bit daft. If it helps some people just love their labels. My stepmother is constantly banging on about getting DD assessed in case she is hyperactive because she runs everywhere and never sits still (unlike stepmothers own grandchildren who sit and watch cbeebies nicely and listen to stories). But since DD is only 16m old I'm not worrying just yet!

upahill Sat 03-Sep-11 12:59:08

YABU.
He asked a what he thought was a valid (in his opinion) a valid question in a somewhat arkward way.

If that had been said to me by my BIL I would have asked what he meant and got his thoughts rather than being furious.

Bit of an over the top reaction I think tbh.

runningtostandstill Sat 03-Sep-11 13:06:31

I guess this was a rather pointless post as none of you know DS so have no idea whether BIL asked a valid question or not. In my view he has forgotten what 4 year olds are or can be like.

TidyDancer Sat 03-Sep-11 13:07:31

It was a clumsy way to say it, but YABU to be furious. For all you know, he may have had some genuine concerns about his little nephew and just wanted to raise it. Aside from his choice of words (which weren't actually bad, just clumsy!), I'm seeing nothing wrong with the scenario.

I can understand you reacting like you did though, it's very easy to go all mother bear when you believe someone has questionned your child or your parenting. I don't believe that's what your BIL has done, but my guess is that that's the nerve he hit.

But FWIW, I think your DS sounds like an average four-year-old boy!

runningtostandstill Sat 03-Sep-11 13:08:07

upahill, I would have got his thoughts but he didn't ask me (prob just as well) he asked DP who just said no.

TidyDancer Sat 03-Sep-11 13:09:21

Possibly he has forgotten what four-year-olds are like, but also, possibly, he has shown concern for his nephew and his question came out of love.

Please try not to be defensive about it, instead just understand that he loves your DS as well.

upahill Sat 03-Sep-11 13:10:54

I still think it was just a clumsy intro and if unless there are underlying issues that we don't know about there is no reason to insult anyone.

I think you are being sensitive - and I probably would have been to until I got other people's perspective.

runningtostandstill Sat 03-Sep-11 13:11:21

tidydancer, you're right, of course it touched a nerve. but also i don't see any reason for him to have asked, and now I'm thinking back over all our meetings for a clue. and eveything I think of - tantrum on Xmas Day eg. I just think I bet 50 per cent of all 4 year ods had a tantrum on Xmas Day!

runningtostandstill Sat 03-Sep-11 13:13:45

I am sure he does love his nephew so possibly the question, as you say, came out of love but I don't think he has ever mentioned any concerns before so this came out of the blue. MiL once said he was hard work. But again that's pretty normal.

GwendolineMaryLacey Sat 03-Sep-11 13:14:10

It was a bit more than just asking questions though. There was obviously a reason for him asking out of the blue so in his head there was a bit of diagnosing going on. If we're splitting hairs.

upahill Sat 03-Sep-11 13:18:25

Honestly don't beat yourself up about it and start trawling back through time.

All you have to say is something like ' Y'know the other day when you asked if our ............. was a bit aspergers, what made you say that?'

He'll probably say something like 'Oh, it's the way that he does (whatever)'

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