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Talking about puberty with my ASD dd(16 Posts)
My 10 year old dd with aspergers is dreading puberty with an abject terror but it's happening and the dreaded menstruation could be just around the corner. To complicate matters she doesn't accept the female gender! We agreed to work together (she and I) on preparing but the first chat has resulted in her repeatedly asking me to kill her so she doesn't have to face it. Has anyone come out the other side of this who could give me hope, and tips?
Its so hard isnt it! Dd3 is in the throws of puberty.
She has had a few periods but nothing regular yet which is a pain because she is on edge waiting for it to happen.
She also doesnt identify as being female. She has actually coped surprisingly well with the periods she has had, I was very factual about what she needed to do and we opened pads together and talked about rolling them up and putting them in the bin.
She isnt at school though and I think that has made a massive difference, we can plan our days around being close to home mostly or in places where I know she will use the toilet.
She wouldnt even go in the toilets at school so I dont know how she would have coped.
Hope that might be of some help. Feel free to pm me if you need to chat away from the board.
The 'American girl' range of books are great. Available on amazon, they explain puberty in a really fantastic way. They have an 'early' puberty book, suitable from 8ish, and then a later one that includes discussions on sex. I've used them for my nt 9yo, and just gently with my ASD 8yr.
However, they are written from a female perspective, not sure how helpful that is?
Although a little cheesy, they do a whole range of great books, roughly along the lines of how of deal with gossiping, bullying, budgeting, how to talk to your parents etc etc. The puberty one is called 'care and the keeping if you. I'd link in amazon, but I think it actually copies my personal details. It's very searchable in amazon and loads of reviews to help guide your choices.
I have 9 year old twin girls and have found this resources website helpful:
My daughters are in the diagnostic process for ASD.
My DD is 13 and although absolutely dreading the onset of puberty, once it became a reality (rather than unknown horror) she's coped surprisingly well.
Practically, ditching the 'teen' type pads and going for thin but long 'night time' ones helped reduce worries about leaking/other people knowing.
One thing Dd3 has struggled with is the uncertainty of periods. She really needs structure in her life to cope, if it continues to be a problem for her I might talk to the GP about her going on the mini pill!
My middle daughter has been on it for a while to regulate her periods because she is a watersports instructor so she wanted to be in control.
When we were away last week Dd3 said she was cold in bed and I asked her to put warmer clothes on rather than having the heater on in the caravan, she said she no longer wears her pyjama trousers in bed because she worries about getting blood on them! I dont want her to feel that she needs to worry about that. Pyjamas are her favourite type of trousers and now she is worrying about spoiling them!
I am going to try to get her some dark coloured ones when we can next get to primark!
There is always something isnt there!
Yes i need we got black pants for exactly this reason. Just takes the worry away.
DD is pretty regular now, and that also has really helped. It took about a year to settle down though. I encouraged her to keep track in a diary so she could see a pattern developing. I think the mini pill would be a good option if it doesn't settle naturally.
Its funny because she hasnt been so worried about her pants its just the pyjamas, they are all very carefully selected with her favourite characters on so I guess thats why.
Fingers crossed we get some regularity at some point. I am not actually sure her body was ready to start when it did because she was 18 months younger than my other 2 girls but we had started her on Melatonin because she was completely unable to sleep and we needed to sort that out but it can cause early periods apparently which I didnt realise at first. I did wonder if that is why they havent settled down, she hast had one since May!
Thank you everyone. I'm following up on all your suggestions
>>One thing Dd3 has struggled with is the uncertainty of periods. She really needs structure in her life to cope,
(Gatecrashes, sorry) Oh gosh yes, that resonates with me. My DD keep forgetting what I have told her about periods because I cannot tell her when one is coming. If she can't write things into her meticulously kept calendar with a date and time and order that it's happening then it will not be happening.
I was thinking she'd probably need to be at least 14 before they'd consider any medication purely for the regulation of periods, but would be interested in the earliest age and/or earliest in the process of having a cycle that it might be possible. Any experiences useful.
Perfectly happy to have you gatecrash Claennister. I've decided that a shower and application of deodorant need to happen every morning in the same way so dd has prepared a detailed process poster with pics, laminated it and put it on the outside of the shower screen facing in. Going ok so far.
Snap! We have a load of laminated self care cartoons about the place. She likes us to use instructions to do simple tasks too, if I ever make noodles I must get out and show that I am following the noodle making card.
Can I join you all?
Dd1 is 12, and puberty is just around the corner. She has severe learning difficulties, and while her school have been fabulous with preparing and teaching her about it all, I worry about how she will cope.
One thing I have wondered about, to help make it a bit easier for her, is period underwear like Thinx. Less to deal with overall, as her motor skills aren't great (she can't even wipe her bottom after a poo yet!), and might help her be a bit more independent. I am in the process of trialling them (and have horrendous flooding periods) and can let you know how it goes if you are interested (sorry, TMI).
I am about to tackle the daily shower/deodorant issue, which may not go down well...
I'd not heard of those Pandas and will be looking into it. Shower routine going ok. She has tried to find exceptions and I'm sticking to a no change approach. I think she needs to do exactly the same every day for a good couple of months before we can allow the odd exception.
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