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My child has autism because I don't show him enough love

(16 Posts)
Finsa Thu 24-Dec-15 13:58:10

DS1 aged 2 is being assessed for some developmental delays that could be related to ASD. He's intelligent and speaks well but doesn't really communicate well Iyswim.
PIL live overseas but are here over Christmas ( staying with BIL). We asked them to babysit DS1 while I took DS2 to his health review. It wasn't necessary, but I thought they might like some extra time with him. DS1 is not particularly happy about strangers coming into our house and did a lot of saying "bye-bye" in the hopes that they'd leave initially but then settled down enough that I felt happy to leave. He does see them often on Skype and seemed to recognise them.
When I got back again, he started saying bye bye again and tried to lock them out of the living room. And then at the door, MIL was holding his hand and he kept saying "no no". I think he thought they were taking him with them.
Anyway, later on MIL phones DH and starts on about how she feels so upset that he has this "illness" and that he really just needs love to "get well" and that he was holding onto her to try and stop her from leaving.
I don't know why I feel very upset by this now. I feel like she's trying to come between me, my child and DH. I know this is the wrong forum, but AIBU?
DH has already told her that she shouldn't work herself up over it as he and I will decide what's best for our children.
I was quite taken aback as our relationship has seemed to be better recently but perhaps she says one thing to me and another to DH? To my face, she says things like "you do so well looking after 2 children without any help " etc. I can only assume she thinks DH doesn't tell me what she says.
I'm probably over reacting but I'm not sure how I'll manage when they come to stay with us from Boxing Day.
Should I say anything? I feel like saying at least that ds1 doesn't have an illness. It's just who he is and changing that makes him a different person ( if, indeed he is ASD).

BitchPeas Thu 24-Dec-15 14:02:14

Yanbu. She's ill informed and needs to keep her opinions to herself. Don't let her get to you (easier said than done I know!) keep your head held high and do what's best for your DC, you and your DH are the ones who know what that is, not a random family member who barely sees them. flowers

rumbleinthrjungle Thu 24-Dec-15 14:12:20

A consultant said once to a friend in my hearing about her son with ASD that it was there from the day he was conceived, it was always who he was and nothing could have changed that . Your MiL's emotional wobbling must be very hard for you to find energy for when it's already difficult enough for you at this time!

Can you find her something simple to read and email it before Boxing day? The National Autistic Society website has some good basic and short leaflets for families, you may well find one for grandparents there. As you say, he may not even have this, and mostly just needs her to take him as he is in the moment and pay attention to what he's communicating with all of him, not just his words.

ALaughAMinute Thu 24-Dec-15 14:13:22

It sounds to me as if your MIL needs educating if she thinks autism is caused by bad parenting. Perhaps you could ask your DH to put her in the picture so she has a clearer understanding? He might also want to ask her to refrain from making such offensive comments especially as you are doing your best to look after two young children.

If she doesn't back down I think you should tell your DH that you don't want them to stay with you.

People (especially the older generation) can be so naive, don't let this get to you. flowers

hedgehogsdontbite Thu 24-Dec-15 14:15:06

Where are they from? I ask because in some countries autism is still considered an illness caused by issues bonding with parents (see outdated 'refrigerator mother' theory). Could this cultural difference be at play?

3littlebadgers Thu 24-Dec-15 14:15:30

YANBU, my dn is on the autistic spectrum, and used to do the 'bye bye' thing a lot too, he still does sometimes. The thing is though, like your little one, he is very loved and also very loving, he just needs to see people day in and day out to accept them being there. The way it was explained to me was that when he can't physically see something, in his mind it doesn't exist. So when he leaves a room, for example, the next time he comes back in, in his mind nothing would have changed. Now imagine leaving a room and coming back in to a face he normally only sees on Skype. It must be really confusing for him.

3littlebadgers Thu 24-Dec-15 14:17:16

DH's dn however is a child that has suffered from emotional neglect, and his behaviour is nothing like the behaviour of children I know who are on the spectrum.

hellsbellsmelons Thu 24-Dec-15 14:18:23

A passive / aggressive chuckle with a <condescending>'yes dear, if you say so' thrown in for good measure should see you through. Repeat as often as you need to until she stops.

ouryve Thu 24-Dec-15 14:19:16

YANBU. Sounds like a heady mix of ignorant and just plain rude.

Finsa Thu 24-Dec-15 14:42:10

hedgehogs you may be right about the cultural differences. They are asian. (As am I, but didn't grow up there). Have googled refrigerator mothers now.

As a pp suggested, I think I will email her a link to some information smile

Finsa Thu 24-Dec-15 14:43:06

And I think your suggestion will be what gets me through the holiday melons

Booboostwo Thu 24-Dec-15 14:55:55

Is your MIL French? This is the kind of crap they say about autism in France, the mother (never the father apparently) is too cold, or, to cover all bases, too smothering with her love. They refer children to psychoanalysts. They are in the Middle Ages and your MIL should join them and leave you the fuck in peace.

Booboostwo Thu 24-Dec-15 14:56:46

Sorry x-post. Clearly the French 'wisdom' has spread to other countries.

fanjoforthemammaries7850 Thu 24-Dec-15 14:57:55

My FIL wondered if I had caused DDs autism by being too soft on her.

Yes that causes severe autism hmm

People often have denial at first and come up with this sort of nonsense. It really hurts though. They need to be educated.

rollonthesummer Thu 24-Dec-15 15:00:31

He's only 2, did you say? My DS barely said a word till he was 3 and no one commented his communication was behind.

Don't take her comments to heart- I bet she didn't mean it!

AttilaTheMeerkat Thu 24-Dec-15 16:09:49

I reckon your MIL meant every word. Its terrible how some grandparents react and this type of scenario is actually more common than many people realise. Denial is usually a manifestation of such behaviours. and she has this in spades.

I would ask your DH to speak to his mother and explain that if she persists with her ill informed and frankly wrong comments they will not be made welcome.

Do send her the info by e-mail and get her also to comment on it. That will also give you more clues as to her overall attitude about the whole gamut of special needs.

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