Help please(13 Posts)
Hi, I am hoping for some help/insights from mums.
I am just a concerned step parent and because I only see the child every 2 weeks im not sure my thoughts are entirely accurate,
3.5 year old SS has definite speech delay (not yet assessed despite myself and his Dad requesting it for 6months) but I am concerned there is more to it than just speech. He still has trouble dressing/undressing himself, isn't toilet trained, wont allow you to touch his head and neck, toe walks (sometimes) and the other day at the park 2 other children (around 2-3 years old) tried to say hi and he totally ignored them to run off by himself, seems happiest on the swing or sitting in the grass alone
He doesn't display "classic" autistic traits in that he is affectionate if you are hurt and usually follows instructions (sometimes you need to say "listen to me" or "look at me" and that seems to be getting worse) he is co-ordinated with some things like climbing and throwing a ball, but not in others like riding a trike, standing on one foot.
Any thoughts would be appreciated
Is he in Nursery? Your husband is perfectly within his rights to make a meeting with his teachers to ask their opinions and their thoughts. And if not then I strongly suggest that your husband speaks to the GP about arranging an assesment.
It sounds like he needs speech therapy. I am assuming he's not already getting that?
Also if he IS getting speech therapy then often, the speech therapist will arrange for further investigation into other conditions. Has his Dad spoken to his Mum about it all?
We are in NZ so different "schooling structure" but no he isn't at any formal learning place (no kindergarten or preschool) and he isn't getting any therapy "yet".
Unfortunately the Mum isn't very co-operative with the Dad so anything he suggest or tries she prevents (she wont allow him to take him to GP or any assessments as she wont allow him to see them outside every second weekend)
Its a really difficult situation
I think trouble with dressing and undressing isn't unusual in a 3.5 year old boy and while it's probably on the late side for toilet training it's not totally unusual. The other things could be a sign of a developmental delay like asd, or possibly not, but sound worth investing to me.
Do they do a development review around this age in NZ? That might help his mum see there are issues worth investigating. We had one around then in Australia and it was the trigger for the loooong process to DS being diagnosed with ASD. Will his mum acknowledge the speech delay exists? I'm guessing he'll start some form of preschool in January or February next year? If so that may also provide a good opportunity for feedback on his development as compared to his peers from professionals who know young children.
I agree the dressing and toilet training alone isn't a major but combined with other things it makes me wonder.
I believe he had a well visit and they said his speech was delayed but nothing seems to be getting done (although we don't always get told).
Unfortunately she homeschools the older child and intends to do the same with this one so he will not be seen by professionals/teachers
Its a tough one
OOps , I also forgot he tends to "play" with the dust buster or door/draft stop rather than toys (we got him a soft toy snake coz its similar to the draft stop but no luck) Cupboard doors must be shut or he will shut them and if i sit down and don't put my feet up he will lift my feet up (which is nice by itself but with everything else concerns me)
It all sounds within the realms of normal behaviour to me (not an educational expert but familiar with the system of asd diagnoses). Better to not spend your time with him looking for signs of anything "wrong" but instead to embrace your stepson for the quirky little chap he is and celebrate his foibles!
BB I def don't look for signs but sometimes things seem a little "off" I guess that's why I asked before leaping. At the very least his speech needs help so I will focus on getting that seen to (nag my man to chase up his ex) and assume/hope the speech therapist will know if further investigation is needed.
I wonder if his Dad has the right to seek therapy for him? As non resident parent he must still have some rights.
Yes he has rights but if he asked to see the kids outside of "visitation" she will say no even if its for the child's benefit and if he asks her to do it she calls him a useless dad who never does anything (it's near impossible). We previously arranged a speech assessment outside normal time and then he wasnt allowed to pick him up so it was time wasted for the therapist and very frustrating. The child needs speech therapy at the very least and I'm really worried he won't get it
He needs to get a court order I'm afraid. He should see a lawyer.
I agree but he's worried about dragging the kids through that kind of drama. I have emailed an autism co- ordinater and she agrees an assessment should be done to be on the safe side (I was more detailed in the email about concerns than on this thread). Its hard to determine if his behaviour is due to frustration and inability to communicate via speech or if the speech is just part of the bigger picture. Now I have the difficult task of broaching the subject with my partner (no parent want to hear something like this is a possibility) and we can go from there. Thank you to those who responded. I really hope it turns out just to be a nice simple speech disorder.
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