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3 year old - shy or something more?

(2 Posts)
happyyonisleepyyoni Mon 24-Feb-14 12:54:44


I'm a bit worried about my nephew (DH brother's son-only child) . He has just turned 3 and is a lovely little boy, but seems in a bit of a world of his own.

For example, we often have family get togethers with lots of cousins ranging from age 1-11 and all the kids race around together the whole time except DN who just sits and watches tv or plays on his own. Its not that they leave him out on purpose, he just doesn't seem interested in playing with other kids. He never really talks to anyone except his parents unless you ask him a direct question. Watching the other kids in our (big) family of a similar age they all talk to each other and to the other adults. He spoke very early (first word at 10 months )and had a big vocabulary at an early age, but I hardly hear him speak unless its to his parents.

He physically couldnt keep up with the others for a while because he was a late walker and not good at stairs/climbing, but he still seems to prefer being with Mum and Dad or on his own to hanging out with the other kids.

His mum mentioned that he doesn't play with other kids much at nursery but is getting better. As he was such an early developer for speaking and also learnt all his colours and numbers well before he was 2, he seems to be ahead of his age in many ways. I jsut put it down to him being a bit of a loner and an only child but DH mentioned he thought DN may be showing Aspergers traits? I don't want to be an interfering auntie but DH is wondering whether he should mention it to his brother, if so Im not sure how. Just wondered if we are worrying about nothing really.

Ferguson Mon 24-Feb-14 20:39:18

As he is bright and can communicate, it may just be that he prefers 'sensible' activities to racing around. He probably feels he can't cope or compete in a boisterous group.

Our DS was an only child, and always preferred 'intellectual' type activities to physical ones.

Maybe a key-worker at nursery could try and 'bring him out' a bit. I was a primary TA for over twenty years, and always tried to support the shy and vulnerable children, as I had never enjoyed school as a child.

Is he good at drawing and construction (Duplo, Lego), looking at books, jigsaw puzzles etc? I would keep TV and 'screen' games to a minimum. At age 3 he could be starting to learn to play keyboard (our DS started at 2) and that is a nice creative activity that is useful in school, and can have a useful social side. (A proper keyboard, not mini-toy one.)

Try to put him into environments that he CAN cope with, rather than ones where he can't.

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