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why do ASD kids get bullied?

(5 Posts)
catkinq Tue 29-Sep-09 15:03:08

Does anyone have any views on this? I know that children with ASD are different but why do children (and adults) have this need to block out people who do not follow suit. I can see why someone with actively bad social skills may be bad company but when they are trying hard to do the social skills bit it, and gettign it right, it seems that the immunity to peer pressure takes over and they are still not accepted because they are wearing the wrong clothes. Why does this matter so much? I am trying to explain to dd but can't.

campion Tue 29-Sep-09 15:17:12

My unscientific conclusion is that it's an animal instinct which probably stems from evolution that rejects anything ( or anyone) who doesn't fit the (perceived) norm. I'm not condoning it - I've had years of it with DS1 - but I do think it's often done on a sub-conscious level. Fitting in is about survival, though usually it's social survival these days.

My son ( ASD) was kicked by a ' down and out' as he walked into the train station. Why was he singled out from all the other people there ( big city)? He was just walking along and certainly wouldn't look for trouble- tries hard to avoid it. Apart from the irony of being assaulted by one of society's rejects - my guess was that the bloke recognised something slightly vulnerable.

It's distinctly depressing sad

sickofsocalledexperts Tue 29-Sep-09 15:37:48

My theory is that quite a sizeable minority of kids are what is technically known as "little shits", who will bully anyone who is different from them, simply for fun(ginger, foreign, disabled etc). My other theory is that in the past we would have kept these little savages better under control, but nowadays we are too soft on our kids, who are after all only young developing animals. Sorry if this offends any parents of nf kids, but it's one thing my ASD son will never be - a bully!

catkinq Tue 29-Sep-09 16:35:20

I'm not convinced that they are just horrible. I've watched them and they try to make dd like them sometimes - they will say "why don't you put your hair in bunches/watch HS musical/wear white shoes etc - like they are trying to help her to adapt and fit in with them (ie they sem quite nice) but when she doesn't they drop her.

The thing is that everyone says that (say) apparence does not matter so when I try to explain to her that she may fit in better if she (say) wore bunches (which she finds uncomfortable) then she comes out with all the "its teh person inside that matters, doesn't matter what you look like etc" so how do I explain that actually it does without inducing rasism etc - ie IMO she is in many ways "better" than them because she really does not care what someone looks like and really does just focus on personality but this is causing her to be left out.

maryz Tue 29-Sep-09 16:50:08

I personally think that a lot of the bullying is due to lack of understanding - it is very hard for a, say, 8 year old to understand that another child can talk about washing machine makes for an hour, or doesn't notice which end of the football pitch he is meant to be scoring in.

Some children try to include the child with ASD and then end up being excluded themselves (along the lines of X is Y's friend, Y is strange, so I won't play with X or Y).

I have found that with my son, and with other children in my children's schools, once the situation is explained most (but obviously not all) children will make allowances, try and include other children etc. There is one child in my younger son's school who has huge difficulties, and it is lovely to see the other children defend him, explain things to him and help him so much. They make many allowances for him.

My older son has been bullied by teachers, got into so much trouble at school, been excluded by teachers and treated badly (knowingly and unknowingly) by many adults, but his classmates have helped and defended him so many times since he first started school. It is the parents I have most problems with.

I think it starts with education - explain the problems to the other children and that is half the battle. However, it takes a brave parent to do this, as the first reaction of the other parents is often "problem child, I'll keep my little Johnny or Mary away from him".

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