..to NOT be scared of DS's delay?! WTF?!(48 Posts)
This isn't an 'is he or isn't he' kind of thread. Honestly. More of an 'AIBU in my approach' IFYSWIM.
My young sir is 2yrs and nearly 9 months. He was always physically on time, crawling at 6 months, walking by 11 months etc. However, communication was slow. He has always been a non-stop babbler, but actual words took a while (around 2).
My DH has been obsessed, and I MEAN obsessed with DS being autistic. My lovely nephew who is nearly 5 has been diagnosed very recently with moderate-severe autism; DH saw on Dr. Google that there were links to genetics and from the time our son was 12 months was 'searching for red flags, just in case.'
To be fair, when he was much younger (around 12-18 months), he was a different child. Loved things than spun, speech delay and a tiptoer. I kept a very close eye on him, checked in regularly with his doctor - who believed DS was just a trifle behind, but as he is and always was interactive, would turn a corner as he got older.
Speech didn't come for ages, however. He was always interest, active, engaged, smiley etc.. but just words seemed to be beyond him.
My DH was a nightmare at this time (12-18 months). He stopped being the involved daddy that he was, was very critical of our son and in his own words, was 'embarrassed' by little man's lack of speech.
I watched and watched and WATCHED my son like a hawk, trying to see what he did. But I didn't.
Because of DH's concerns, I took my son (alone, he will never come to medical appts for DS with me as he says he is 'dreading' hearing 'the news of his special needs') to a specialist child development center, which has a autism unit. I live in Cyprus, so it is a very different system here - we only had to wait a week to see an autism specialist.
The doctor we saw told me DS had a 'very strange mouth presentation with very low muscle tone' and to take him to an ENT specialist immediately.
Turned out DS has ridiculously enlarged adenoids and tonsils, and is 60% deaf in one ear. He was completely unable to breathe through his nose, which explained why he was having issues with harder foods (choking!). Go figure.
He has now had the offending tonsils and adenoids removed.
We later returned for 2x 2 hour 'play sessions' where the child development team worked with our boy, and basically told us they see no cause for concern regarding autism, but just that he needed speech therapy and to attend nursery ASAP to improve his social skills.
Over the past 4months and particularly since his op, my son has had what I can only describe as a crazy progression. Pointing and naming everything he sees to show you, has learned over 200 new words (pronunciation is a bugger, but Rome wasn't built in a day). He is loving, laid back, a great sleeper, trying new food, walking better and is generally HAPPIER. Loves to be played with, loves to go out and be entertained - I can only describe him as loving life. Literally.
My DH still believes he is autistic, and that I am being negligent by not taking further action.
I don't get it. Yes, I can see that my son is a bit behind his peers. Yes, I know his language is delayed, but I take him 2x a week for speech therapy and he's doing incredibly well.
BUT - he is the happiest, most loving little boy I know. If he eventually DOES turn out to have autistic traits or even a real diagnosis.. should I be scared? Because I'm not. My DH acts like some massive tragedy has fallen upon us, but all I see is a cheerful little chap that hugs his teddies. I'm being told that I'm in denial, blinded by mother's love and that I'm wasting precious time. I have told him that I have ALREADY taken him to several doctors who all say the same thing - but he says that they've missed it and he sees what we don't.
My marriage is falling apart over this - I feel like my son is being observed constantly, I feel like I am constantly doubting myself and my ability as a mother for 'missing' a disorder that DH is convinced is there.
From my POV, I adore my son, he will be a fabulous person whoever he turns out to be - I just don't see the cause for panic or horror if he functions a little differently. So... I guess what I'm asking is, if one parent continues to have doubts about his son's development, AIBU not to a) find yet another doctor to assess him and b) to not feel like it's the end of the FUCKING world if he is delayed/ not neuro-typical etc.?
when he was much younger (around 12-18 months), he was a different child. Loved things than spun, speech delay and a tiptoed.
All very normal for that age. The boy sounds completely "normal" in every way from every word you've written.
I don't know who to feel sorriest for, your DH, you or your boy.
Only question, when did your son actually start pointing & which finger did/does he use?
Why the fuck does your DH think it's your job alone to get him therapy or a diagnosis?
Put the ball in his court. If he's that concerned, let him sort it. Either he'll do nothing and shut up about it, or he'll take him along to an appointment himself and hear from the horses mouth that there's no autism.
He's being a total dick. How dare he put all the emphasis on you to sort a (non existent) condition.
Thanks for reply. He started pointing just before 2, with his index finger. He uses it to show you things and to ask for things. Around 100 times a day haha, or so it feels like... He also uses his index finger to point out objects that I name in books.
A speech delay is perfectly normal with reduced hearing. It doesn't sound like there's anything wrong with your DS at all to me.
Your DH has some big issues though.
Your son sounds adorable.
Your husband has some problems that he needs to get to grips with.
Your husband sounds like he hasn't met many children. Your son sounds fine and like he is catching up following the hearing/adenoids & tonsils thing.
I wouldn't get hung up on any one feature of autism, you need to have many to be diagnosed. For example, my very NT DD has never been much of a pointer.
Your son sounds really cute. The speech delay is most likely entirely caused by the hearing loss and adenoids.
It sounds like you have tried reasoning with your dh and that's failed. If it was my dh I would let him take ds to any appointments to get him investigated for autism.
Your dh seems to be insuring himself against "disaster" by convincing himself it's already happened (sorry that's phrased really badly).
That would drive me mad! Let him take him to appointments if he wants too
Has your DH got Munchausens by proxy? Not sure of spelling.
Someone I know seems to always have her second child at medical appts for various rare and uncertain issues, which then seem to go away until the next thing crops up. You can literally say "how is the treatment for x going" and she'll say oh she's not got that anymore. Is really odd.
I think it's your DH that needs help, not your DS.
I hope he's not banging on about this in front of your DS.
Quite frankly he sounds like a bit of an arse.
I think your DH needs to see a GP actually. He sounds quite irrational about this and that's worrying.
lljkk why did you ask which finger he used to point to things?
And yes yanbu, even if your child ever does develop SN (because could happen to any of our offspring, that's just life, full of risks) then you simply deal with it, don't make it an ordeal.
Apart from the now dealt with speech delay, are there any other reasons your DH thinks he might be autistic? My nephew's best friend didn't say actual words until well over the age of two BUT he pointed to things and responded to requests, all of a sudden started talking loads! So there's lots of different reasons for the different ways that kids develop, doesn't always mean there's something up.
I agree your DH sounds very, very anxious and irrational.
I'm not an expert, IIRC: finger pointing with index finger before 18 months is ideal and least linked to any kind of ASD (but no guarantee either). My understanding is that varying from that developmental milestone has some association with some autistic spectrum disorders but not always. it is the only thing OP has written that comes close to ticking one of the boxes her DH is trying to see.
DS is 10yo & often points with his middle finger. Maybe one day we'll find out that there is some niche point on the AS where he belongs, but not one anyone can name. Anyway, OP already has developmental people helping out because of the boy's deafness. He's already in the system being monitored. Getting het up about it is pointless. The lad will be what he will be & OP is sensible to enjoy him here and now.
Yes to everyone saying your husband needs help.
My speech was terrible at his age for exactly the same reasons. My brother who did not have that excuse, couldn't string a sentence together when he started school. He is now a very successful carpenter and is NT.
The problem is with your husband. Not your son.
What a massive shame that he is missing out on such precious time, I love that age, its amazing.
You could be describing my DS at that age, he had enlarged adenoids and had 60% hearing loss in both ears due to glue ear so had speech delay and slightly odd things that did make me wonder, as I knew something was wrong. But it was not picked up til the age of 3.5 after 18 months of going round and round in circles with NHS. He had grommets in and adanoids out and was like a different child, exactly how you are describing. He's know 7 and absolutely neuro typical. Caught up completely within 7-10 months and he was a lot older than your DS!
I feel sorry for your DH. What a sad way to think about your own son.
My pil were like your dh about ds1, who sounds very like your ds.
Fortunately dh was with me on this. To make a (very) long story short we barely have any contact with them now, other than standard polite but distant interactions.
Unfortunately this is not a solution when it is your dh. I think you need to tackle it and send him to have some serious professional help with his issues, before it starts to really affect your lovely ds.
Your poor DH. He sounds like he is either suffering from anxiety or depression.
He's focusing on the "autism" issue as a way of managing his own issues. This is very common and actually has a name but I can't remember it.
Would he consider counseling?
IMO your dh has health anxiety which is a mental health disorder
Please do let your dh take your son to see a specialist of his own choosing so that you can shut him up once and for all.
I would not take kindly to someone repeatedly saying my dc had special needs even though medical experts and myself thought that wasn't the case.
I must point out that it is grossly unfair to label the DH an arsehole.
He really does sound like he has bad anxiety or depression.
MANY mothers go through similar and if they came on here looking for reassurance then nobody would call them an arsehole.
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