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Autism, Speech and Language Difficulties

(8 Posts)
user1483798247 Sat 07-Jan-17 15:02:41

Hello all,

I am step mother to a sweet little boy who will turn 8 in two weeks. He is on the autistic spectrum with a two year delay in his learning - he has significant speech and language problems and social difficulties. He struggles with many things although at the same time has many wonderful strengths.

I am wondering firstly if anyone has any recommendations for speech and language/maths/extra tuition therapists/teachers? He has a lot of extra help at school but I feel we need to get him more. We need to find someone who can make learning fun for him as he absolutely hates it. I feel we're at a critical point in his learning and we've got to really push to make much needed progress.

Secondly and heartbreakingly, he has no friends. There have been incidents of him being bullied at school, children don't seem to be very nice to him - I think because his speech is so muddled and his social boundaries/interactions aren't quite right he's an easy target to be picked on : ( He constantly comes home from school saying so and so was horrid to him and no one likes him and he just wants one friend : ( Therefore I wonder if anyone has any leads or information on groups we could take him to where he might be able to make a friend and have some fun.

His dad has been a single father for a long time before I met them and we have become rather isolated in Hastings. We're pretty much just a unit of 3 without any respite or help from extended family. We're all a bit in need of some friends who understand the highs and lows of raising a child with autism. His dad said to me recently 'I just can't bare to be friends with anyone who has normal children and complains if their child didn't get 10/10 in a maths test when my boy can hardly even speak properly and he's nearly 8. It kills me.' It's all very hard.

Any advice or suggestions are greatly appreciated. We're at a bit of an all time low and I'm desperate to help them both. Thanks so much x x x

ClaraMumsnet (MNHQ) Sat 07-Jan-17 19:11:09

Hi user1483798247, this board is for Mumsnetters who have SN- we're going to move this to the SN Children board, where you may get more of a response. flowers to you and your lovely DSS.

zzzzz Sat 07-Jan-17 20:04:24

Welcome to the SN board. brew
Does he live with you full time?
How severe is his language delay/disorder?
How far behind is he with maths/literacy?

user1483798247 Sat 07-Jan-17 20:29:38

Hello zzzzz and thank you.

Yes, he lives with us full time, he hasn't seen his mother since he was 3. She is AWOL and there has been zero contact.

His language delay puts him at about a 6 year olds level. His sentence formation is very poor. He has no concept of time - days, weeks, months, years or how to read a clock. He seems to learn or hear words wrong and then they just stick e.g 'mu-jamas' for pyjamas, 'am barrow' is bow and arrow, 'plobly' is probably, 'land roger' is Land Rover, 'memember' for remember. He stutters and stammers and it takes a long time for him to get a sentence out which is frustrating for him. He often makes little sense and gets very cross.

His maths is really bad. Times tables are an alien concept. He can add up very basic figures, but can't subtract. He hates maths and get extremely angry when trying which often leads to crying, screaming and throwing books across the room.

Socially he has no understanding of personal space or social boundaries. He is obsessed with war, loves guns, fighting, dare I say it, killing, and more recently obsessed with 'the law'. He repeats the same questions over and over and over. Its very tiring.

His reading age is roughly 5 years 9 months - but he has no interest in books other then in smelling them. He smells a lot of things, I think he gets a lot of information through smell rather then visually. He isn't able to follow stories and seems to not have any imagination which doesn't involve war.

He likes to watch films and play war with his toys whilst making the same noises over and over. I've been listening to those same sounds for 4 years now. They aren't very pleasant : ( He does like drawing and painting but needs to be coaxed into doing them.

Life is very up and down.

I wish we could help him to not be so frustrated and also to help find some friends x x x

zzzzz Sat 07-Jan-17 21:45:00

I think there's lots that could help.

Do you have an iPad or iPhone? If so does he like that sort of thing?

My DS is 11 now and from the sounds of it more severely language disordered but with better speech.

Lulu2515 Mon 09-Jan-17 20:58:55

What area are you in? Has he had a speech assessment?

user1483798247 Tue 10-Jan-17 13:39:56

We're in Hastings. Yes, he has had speech assessments and receives a lot of help from the SENCO at his school but as he gets older the gap between his speech and his peers speech is becoming clearer and clearer. We would like to find extra tuition outside of school to help him further. He needs help with maths, reading, writing and speech.

We don't have an iPad but I do have some maths apps on my phone that he likes to use. We're trying to keep him away from having his own iPad or phone for as long as possible : )

x x x

zzzzz Tue 10-Jan-17 13:45:15

iPad was one of the most useful tools not only in teaching ds but also in giving him common ground with his peers.
Apps from Hyperion games for maths and monteasorium for early maths and literacy.
Montessori at home reading game books 1 to 3

For speech
Buddy bear apps for early concepts
Language builder for play and listen
Question Builder for developing Wh questions.

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