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Possible Aspergers in 6 year old son-warning,long(29 Posts)
Hi all.I am new to mumsnet so not sure of all the right way to do things so please bear with me.
I have had concerns about my eldest son who is 6.11 and in Yr2 at an Independant school.I will try not to drip feed but it is long!
He is a late June baby and one of the youngest in his year.It all began when he was at Pre school (at the same school) and they said he was very happy but quiet,liked to be by himself,obsessional about things-fireman sam,dinosaurs,star wars and so on to the point where he knows every tiny little thing about it.He struggles to make close friendships but most of his class have been together since they were 2 so have grown up together.He does give eye contact most of the time but it can be very hard to pull him out of his world into the real world often at the expense of anything iygwim.We are told he is very bright-exceptional vocab at a young age,very good reader however in reception he struggled to form letters and write.He also struggled with gross/fine motor skills.His Reception teacher noticed all this and his inability to interact with the rest of his class and had a meeting with us and suggested we go to GP.
We did this and asked for a referral to Children's Centre that deals with Special needs and he was assesed for Aspergers/Autism.HE had a couple of different assesments and we were told that because he doesn't display the triad of impairements it is unlikley that he has Aspergers.
Hope you're still with me!Fast forward a year and he is doing very well academaically but still struggles socially and I'm now told he is withdrawing in class and his classmates have started to notice he is a little different.Also he leans very heavily on his younger brother (5.2) who is in reception who is the complete opposite in personality to him and it is affecting his brother's friendships.I must also add that ds1 is very,very rigid in most aspects of his life but esp playing and finds turn taking,playing each other's games very hard.
His teacher has been amazing and so have the teachers from reception and yr1 who have put IEP's in place and regularly updated them.
Now we are nearing the end of yr2 and things are deteriorating and his teacher has rec getting an Ed Psyche in to suggest some strategies to help with his "emotional outbursts" amongst other things.They want to get these in place before yr3.`the school have been amazing and adore him and want to do whatever they can to help.
My point of all of this is whether anyone can tell me:do children HAVE to display the triad of impairments to have Aspergers or can they have a "mild" case where only certain symptoms appear?Any help/advice would be most appreciatied,I feel very alone and worried about my beautiful boy.
Can I just add there are quite a few other things I haven't mentioned.He struggled with potty training,but was fine with ridong a bike/scooter.Finds all sport esp ball games very hard.Still has alot of tantrums.He goes to Beavers and enjoys it but hasn't really got any friends there.Gets on better with adults than with peers.Is a very fussy eater though wasn't when he was weaned and as a young toddler.Has always been a great sleeper.Hope that all helps,please if anyone can give me any advice?
Hi There's a cross over between aspergers and other developmental disorders, such as dyspraxia. Aspergers is also a spectrum disorder so there may not be all aspects of it (if this makes sense). It's hard for the professionals to diagnose because of this. My son has sensory and social skills issues, they are still unsure though.
I must admit he sounds very much like my DS at that age. I was initially confused as my son has very good eye contact and thought he couldn't be on the spectrum. When we started the diagnosis procedure I was amazed to find how much he fitted the criteria for Aspergers. It is a spectrum so can present worse in some areas of the triad than others. As DS has got older, he is 12 in the summer, the differences between him and his peers have become more noticeable than they were when he was 5 or 6. He is very bright, but his brain is like Swiss cheese, some things he excels at whilst other things completely pass him by.
Sunnymeg that sounds so like my ds.I know it's prob not helpful to do this but I'm trying to arm myself with as much info as poss before his meeting with ed psyche on 7th June but I have read alot about PDA,so many of his behaviours fit this too.It's so hard isn't it.The aggression and tantrums are getting worse,compounded by the fact he's shattered after a late night on saturday night.I wonder if the aggression is in fact anxiety.
sunnymeg I meant to add,has your son been diagnosed with Aspergers?
OP - you could be writing about my DS, who's the same age as yours - sensory issues (all of the senses), hypermobile, no friends, no interest in friends, obsessed with the Wii AND only the Wii - gluten/dairy intolerance, smearing poo when he was younger (TMI), clingy - only wants to be around adults, no theory of mind (thinks people are thinking the same as he is, no idea that people have their own minds) etc - the list goes on. I've compiled pages of his behaviour/personality and videod (sp?) him. The outcome - no diagnosis of aspergers or HFA. Next stage for me is contacting the National Autistic Society and trying to get a different paediatrician. Maybe you could try this.
PolterGooseI haven't read those books but I have heard of Tony Attwood,perhaps I'll look them up.I am very aware that I shouldn't be looking stuff up on the internet but I'm trying to arm myself with info for when I see the Ed Psych.If anyone has any tips I'd be very grateful.
I mentioned in a previous post about PDA does anyone have any experience of this?One of our major issues is homework.He has horrendous meltdowns about doing it,not because he can't,because he just won't.I know most kids hate homework but his meltdowns happen most nights esp when he has to do alot of writing.He loves maths.His teacher has said that if it causes problems not to do it but I feel (maybe wrongly)that he needs to learn this is one of those things he has to do.
DiamondDoris I'm fairly certain DS isn't hypermobile and doesn't have sensory issues.
It sounds to me as if he is having meltdowns due to the fact he has to do school work at home. Apparently lots of children with Aspergers really struggle with this, as they compartmentalise everything, so taking something from the school setting home makes no sense. We have a set time when DS has to do his homework at the weekends and if he has to do any during the week we let him have a snack whilst he does it. The ability to eat when doing homework really helps calm him down.
SunnymegThe compartmentalising sounds very familiar.He has quite a bit of homework during the week mainly as he is in the top set for maths and literacy.We do as much as poss at the weekend and always with a nice snack and drink and the promise of tv/ds after.He also has been learning the violin since yr1 but refuses to practice or he'll "practice" but play a couple of notes and consider that enough.I know he's still young but it is expensive for him to learn it and he hasn't really progressed in 18 months or so of learning.However I'm loathe in some ways to cancel it as I was told by Specialist that he does have low self-esteem and playing an instrument would help.To be honest it causes more agro.He is very literal with things and takes every little thing personally (I'm like that too!).Sometimes he can't see/understand if someone is simply taking the piss out of him,he gets very upset.
I'm waffling on alot here but does any of this ring any bells to anyone else.I am told that he is just eccentric but I can't help think there's more to this.
Dear disorganised, your DS sounds very much like my DS at his age. He has a diagnosis of AS/HFA (obtained when he was 6). He benefited massively from social skills sessions when at primary school. The diagnosis was useful as teachers knew he needed to be treated a little bit differently to the others. I think it would be worth persuing a diagnosis but you can proceed as if you have one.
My DS is doing well at school now (aged 13). He has a few good friends and has got involved in music at school which he enjoys.
LisalettaThanks for the reply.We have tried to get a diagnosis but were told that he couldn't have Aspergers as doesn't have triad of impairments,however that was 2 years ago.Guess we'll just have to see what Ed Pysch says.
Disorganised (and I'm quite sure your not!). The eating during homework helps DS on a sensory level and helps to reduce his anxiety. We were recommended to do this by Autism support. Sorry if I didn't make this clear in my post.
Ds is 14 now and he has got worse as he's become older. The sensory issues are mild apart from being sensitive to touch but his social skills are not right. He's good with adults and wants to be treated as an equal, which isn't easy. He has become a lot more stubborn and he has a constant need to discuss everything I ask him to do, which is draining. He says he does this to learn. We're waiting for a cahms referral. He's wonderful otherwise.
You could do with a visual timetable, disorganised; times and the dates, then the jobs that you want him to do. Ds used to do homework whilst I was cooking his supper. The meltdowns could also be because he's tired having spent all day trying to conform at school. It may be a good idea to speak to his teacher.
I have spoken at length to his teacher who has been very supportive and wrt homework has always said don't do it if it causes problems but I guess the control freak in me feels that he SHould do it.It was his teacher who has suggested the Ed Pysch who is coming on 7th June.I agree with you that he has got worse as he's got older and as another poster said the differences between him and his peers are now getting bigger and his teacher has noticed that.He is at an Independant school as we feel the class sizes work better for him and he gets alot of 1:1 support.It is a lovely school but my husband is concerned that by the fact they've got an Ed Pysch in they don't know how to deal with him.He is never disruptive,naughty,aggresive or anything like that at school.His manners are impeccable and all the teachers adore him however he struggles to play amongst other things and the meltdowns are being noticed by his classmates.My husband is now thinking if being in a private school is right for him (ds is very,very happy and settled).We are in catchment for what is considered to be the best school in the area (rated outstanding) but htere are 30 kids in a class and 2 classes to a year.It is a very academic and sporty school and that's why I feel he is better where he is.
I'm sorry for going on and on but as you can see I am in pieces over all this and struggling to work out a course of action.We can't do anything till the Ed Pysch comes.
PLease could anyone say whether what I have said about my son would ring alarm bells with them or do you think that it is a phase that he will grow out of (I have been told this numerous times by family members and friends).Thanks for reading.
PolterGoose their day starts at 8.45 and finishes at 3.15.HE does Beavers on wed night and sports club till 4.30 on mondays.We've had to stop swimming as that was another thing that he would reg have meltdowns about.They now do swimming in school.Agree re violin.
Are there any books you would recommend?Tony Attwood was mentioned,any others?
I would keep DS in indi for the class sizes tbh because this limits sensory input. Now is not the time to increase it or to introduce transition to another school - both will increase anxiety.
I know if is of little comfort but at least DS has meltdowns both at school and at home. Things are much more difficult when the child is exceptionally passive at school and has meltdowns only at home. The school calling in the EP is what they should do and is not an indication of their failure.
ime if the presentation is complex and is not 'classic' then there are those including EPs that will attempt to challenge a diagnosis. btw the EP can't diagnose a medical condition. They usually do observations of the child in class, talk to the child, the teachers and the parents and do standardised testing that will look at cognitive abilities and identify 'strengths and weakness' but also indicate whether there is an issue with working memory or processing speed, etc.
Has he been assessed by either or both SALT or OT? There are SALT (such as Margo Sharp) who are authorised to use DISCO to diagnose ASD. Whilst all children are different there will be a profile commonly found using SALT assessments for higher language function, discrepancy between expressive and receptive language skills etc.
wrt OT have a look at a sensory disorder profile http://www.silentstars.org/images/Sensory_Processing_Disorder_Checklist.pdf. It is wider than you may think. Posters on here have DC that often seem to share issues with sensory issues, fine motor skills, hypermobility, proprioception etc.
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