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Autism Speaks

Randolphkeys

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So my son, affectionately called "Thor" by the long-time members, was diagnosed with autism last Friday. Obviously this has been a weird few months... I think I actually made a TASTELESS joke about " ass-full of Asperger's Syndrome" less than two years ago. Whelp, I'm on the wrong side of the joke now.

The process has been rough on the wife and me, just because it all begins with strangers telling us our boy isn't normal. And it builds, and eventually we start seeing the signs, but we don't want to see them. It isn't easy. The cool thing is that on intelligence tests that correspond to the ASD testing (Autism Spectrum Disorder - that's what it is called since 2013) our Thor is very high functioning, very high intelligence, but without a doubt on "the spectrum."

So I was wondering what other members have experienced with this diagnosis, or any questions you have with the "Autism Spectrum." I need more reasons to research the answers.

Thanks for reading...
 

Adam

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Keys being a science teacher I have met my fair share of kids on the spectrum. I have known kids who are very mild and just a little inflexible and single minded to students at 12 years old who find the chaos of a 1500 student school incredibly stressful. Interesting thing is every student I have met by the time they leave has really developed and learnt valuable key social skills. One I particular is now in year 12 (high school jr) and is my class clown. Now he is a functioning autistic so on the middle of the spectrum but when he was 14 he was not in school no eye contact very aggressive and frustrated.
I suppose my main point is I hope you guys get the support you need and if he is high functioning he will develop some skills he needs. Maybe not to be the god of thunder but to be happy and healthy and successful in what ever he aspires to (which in my experience will be physics)
 

Cratylus

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I mean this in all seriousness, Keys. You need to look into the Paleo diet for your son. There is growing evidence that eating Paleo can greatly reduce the symptoms of autism.
 

Adam

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I mean this in all seriousness, Keys. You need to look into the Paleo diet for your son. There is growing evidence that eating Paleo can greatly reduce the symptoms of autism.
I wouldn't say it's the paleo diet specifically but anything that can reduce any of the GI inflation that is often associated with autism.

As an aside I would commend this book the curious incident of the dog in the night time, as its written from an autistic point of view and while everyone is different it's a great story and helps with perspective

 

Lord Mar

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How old is your son? You speak of others noticing things about your son - what kind of signs?
 

sjhughes

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Best advice I can give you is stay positive and supportive. In the beginning everyday may be a fight to try and fight counteract some of the symptoms but every progressive step you see will mean that much more. One of my best friends was diagnosed with Asperger's and from meeting him you would have no idea. He was able to get where he is today(college graduate and working) with the constant support from family and friends. You have a great thing with this message board, you can vent, get advice as well as receive continuous support. Stay positive, everyone on here will be there for you and your family.
 

Akron330

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Thanks for sharing that Keys. I'm a licensed IS and have been working with children all over the spectrum for years. I didn't write the book on autism, but I'm pretty familiar with it and would more than willing to help with any questions you may have.
 

RonG

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I remember when people would tell me there was something about my daughter. It use to infuriate me. Then the doctors told us she was 90% deaf in one ear and 60% in the other. I was still in denial for a long time. She was almost 3 when my wife had her hearing tested it took me until she was nearly 5 to accept it and move on. My fears were how she would be treated and how she would take it when she started to understand she was different and there were things she absolutely would never be able to do. It has been a real struggle for most of her life, and part of the source for her depression. Looking back there are so many ways I could have handled it better. I know its a real adjustment when you find out your child isn't and won't be like other children, it weighs heavy on parents that their kids may have to put up with a society that doesn't deal well with different.


From one father to another find your center, make your peace with this now. I often wonder if my daughters depression issues were/are exasperated by my lack of getting on board (for the lack of a better term) sooner than later.

Kati has been volunteering with the special Olympics for 5 years now 100% on her own. She is 16 and loves working with special needs children, autism children are her favorite. She loves to come home and tell me the stories about how the kids faces light up when they see her. The happiest I see her ever, is when she is telling me those stories. our neighbor has an autistic son who is 7 now and we absolutely love him, that kid is always so happy!

If you ever need a shoulder or an ear man just fire away!
 

The Oi

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Also curious about the symptoms, @Randolphkeys

When was the first time you noticed anything that made you think?
 

The Human Q-Tip

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So my son, affectionately called "Thor" by the long-time members, was diagnosed with autism last Friday. Obviously this has been a weird few months... I think I actually made a TASTELESS joke about " ass-full of Asperger's Syndrome" less than two years ago. Whelp, I'm on the wrong side of the joke now.

The process has been rough on the wife and me, just because it all begins with strangers telling us our boy isn't normal. And it builds, and eventually we start seeing the signs, but we don't want to see them. It isn't easy. The cool thing is that on intelligence tests that correspond to the ASD testing (Autism Spectrum Deficiency - that's what it is called since 2013) our Thor is very high functioning, very high intelligence, but without a doubt on "the spectrum."

So I was wondering what other members have experienced with this diagnosis, or any questions you have with the "Autism Spectrum." I need more reasons to research the answers.
My brother is a high-intelligence, high-functioning guy on the spectrum -- diagnosed. Just retired as a CFO and is now pulling down $8500/week doing consulting work. Happily married with two great kids.

He always had a certain degree of social awkwardness, and it was admittedly rough for him socially as a kid. Didn't help that he'd been popped ahead a grade while young and so was always the youngest guy in his class. But, he made it.

Also have a stepson that isn't as high on the spectrum who does have issues with school, jobs, etc.. Hard on him growing up too sometimes, completely unable to make eye contact for awhile, but he got help. He eventually got involved in sports and, though not very good (that's putting in mildly, it helped him enormously in terms of developing friends in school. Very hard worker currently working as a server in a high end restaurant who will always be okay because so many people like him -- great personality though definitely on the spectrum.

Good luck to you and your family, Keys. I can just say from having grown up with my brother, and having raised two of my own without Asperger's, that all kids end up having issues. I love my brother to death despite/because of his goofball qualities, and he's had a great life despite all of this being undiagnosed and with no treatment at all back when we were kids.

You just know you've got some specific things to work on in terms of helping him interact with other people, but you've got professional help and guidance to help you. It'll be some extra work, but your family should be fine.
 

Randolphkeys

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I very much appreciate all the support, fellas.

Oi and Mar: Thor likes talking about very specific interests but doesn't talk about himself. He can tell you about 60 different kinds of construction equipment and cold count to 50 at age 2, but won't talk about what he did that day. He often flaps his arms when he is excited rather than just say what is on his mind. He is also very orally fixated, biting things that aren't food if he is frustrated or excited. We never gave him a pacifier, so the oral fixation perplexed us as parents. He is also VERY particular, which leads to tantrums.

I've learned that there are dozens of different ways it can formulate, but those were the main hints for us. Gotta run, we both have off today and I'm taking him out, thanks for all the kind words.
 

Lord Mar

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I'm no expert in the field of autism, but are you certain of the diagnosis? It seems to me it just sounds like he's not an asshole and is intelligent.

"Autism" has increased ten-fold over the last few decades (if my memory serves me correct). Always interested in finding a coorelating reason, and I believe the main reason is the poison we eat/inject and the pollution we breathe.

Regardless, it sounds like your son is OK and I'm sure you'll both have a great life together.
 

Randolphkeys

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I'm no expert in the field of autism, but are you certain of the diagnosis? It seems to me it just sounds like he's not an asshole and is intelligent.
I'm the one who is supposed to be in Paranoid denial, not you ;-)

Yes, we have had multiple people suggest getting him checked out, then a pair of highly educated psychologists confirm after 4 hours of play therapy. I'm well past the denial stage. And I do agree he is a non-asshole.
 

Akron330

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The arm flapping is pretty common in children with autism, we typically call it "stimming", short for self stimulatory behavior. Is there any verbalizations with the arm flapping?

He sounds like a great kid. I'm sure his teachers will look into social stories or PEER groups to help with the social component. I do quite a bit of social practice with my students, it's really helpful for those that don't have their social skills occur naturally.
 

Lord Mar

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I'm the one who is supposed to be in Paranoid denial, not you ;-)

Yes, we have had multiple people suggest getting him checked out, then a pair of highly educated psychologists confirm after 4 hours of play therapy. I'm well past the denial stage. And I do agree he is a non-asshole.
He must take after his mother...
 

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