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Does this sound "normal" for an (almost) 5 year old?

(8 Posts)
Pennybubbly Thu 10-Sep-09 03:47:32

My BF (unfortunately in a different country) has mentioned several traits about her DS (5 at the end of this year), that have triggered a few alarm bells in my head, especially after reading some of the recent threads on here.

Admittedly I've spent fairly limited time with her DS, so I wouldn't ever want to casually drop any "solution to his problem" into conversation unless I was pretty much convinced that there was indeed a problem.

Here are some of behaviour traits that I've seen and that she's mentioned:

1. Can't stand new company (hates school and the whole idea of going, staying there. Has been part-time for a year and a half and is just starting full-time at the same school.
2. Hates being with other kids and will refuse to play with them. At school, will play on his own and complains if another child "follows" him or wants to play.
Is, however, fine with his own family and significantly older sibling.
3. Hates loud noises, especially from other children. Covered his ears for about 10 minutes when my baby was crying, even when the crying had stopped.
4. Is very articulate and prefers adult conversation (ie way of talking, hates child-like talk).
5. Very very fussy eater. Extremely small variation on food sorts and will often refuse or accept only certain colour foods, which must not touch each other. Will happily help to make and prepare food but will be announcing at the same time that he will "never never never NEVER eat that".
6. Very possessive and controlling about his belongings and about family members, his house etc. X cannot play with this toy, you can have this kit-kat but I will unwrap it for you and you must eat it when I tell you, and so on.

So what I want to know is: are these just normal traits in a 4 year old? My 4 year old DD certainly does not display them, but that doesn't mean there's a problem does it?
I have wondered recently whether there's a sensitivity issue, but would hate to suggest anything of the sort to my friend, as although she has referred to him as anti-social and a pita at times (of course not to his face), has never ever mentioned that she thinks there could be some sort of problem.

Sorry for waffling. He's a great kid and I'd like to be there to support them should anything be "wrong" as it were.

jabberwocky Thu 10-Sep-09 03:54:04

He does sound very sensitive and may indeed have a Sensory Processing problem. Is there any way you could discuss another child with these issues and see if it resonates with her? If he does have sensory problems the time is ripe to begin therapy to help the little guy out.

Pennybubbly Thu 10-Sep-09 06:49:57

Yes, sensory issues - that's what I meant! Not sensitive issues.
Mmm, could mention 'another' child, but I think she may see through it. I know she is completely aware of his issues, hell, she discusses them enough with me, but I think she sees them as an amusing, (albeit sometimes frustrating), part of his character and no more.
It wasn't until she mentioned the aversion to noise and dislike of other children recently that I began to put together the pieces (the one-colour only foods, the fads, obsessions etc) and come up with an overall picture. Even now, I'm still wondering if there really is an issue.
I wonder if she may not be able to see the wood for the trees?

ohmeohmy Thu 10-Sep-09 07:07:31

Perhaps you could get one of the books about it for her - Out of sync child,(do a search for sensory integration on amazon or look up some of the other threads on here) etc and say it sounded a bit like her DS and perhaps something might be able to be done to make life easier for him.

If he does have processing issues it can lead to high levels of stress for the child and that can be bad for their health in the long wrong in addition to affecting their functioning and learning. If this is someone you care about I think you need to speak out.

Pennybubbly Thu 10-Sep-09 07:24:30

Don't get me wrong - I do want to help. If there's a problem.
Wanted to check with you ladies first whether you think my suspicions are right before I say anything though. Seems so far they could be? sad

squeaver Thu 10-Sep-09 07:28:05

Could you direct her on to MN? To basically ask the same question as your OP?

CybilLiberty Thu 10-Sep-09 07:32:01

Some of those behaviours do sound a bit 'austistic', or aspergers like. I'm not an diagnostic expert...just work with children who show some of those types of behaviours. Is there a SENCO at the school who could be spoken to by your friend?

Pennybubbly Thu 10-Sep-09 08:03:57

That's the thing squeaver and CybilL - she isn't asking the question "is something wrong" - I am.
She sees his behaviour as him, as who he is and just laughs at his odd ways. I'm pretty sure, no 100% sure - that if she were worried, or suspected anything was wrong, she would have told me.
I think that if the pattern on this thread continues (ie everyone agreeing something is wrong) I will mention it somehow to her.
Thanks for your replies.

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