Sunday, May 20, 2018

Update on Trenton

Last week was one of the most difficult weeks I have had in a long time. No words can describe the feeling I had when I had to leave Trenton at the Harsha Behavioral Hospital. It took every ounce of strength that God provided me that day to walk out without my baby. I knew it was what he needed. At times, parents have to make decisions that they may not want to make. I have had to make a lot of those for Trenton. I knew in my heart it was the best decision. Whether I wanted to or not, I had to let him go so he could get better.

Trenton stayed in the hospital Monday through Friday. I was told I would get a 24 hour notice before he was released. I was struggling big time Friday at work. I cried....actually I cried everywhere last week. If you saw me, I am sure I cried to you. Anyway, I was struggling bad Friday. To much of my surprise, I got a call in the middle of a meeting and it was the hospital saying that I could come get him! I didn't need 24 hour notice because Trenton was already in ABA therapy five days a week and he already saw a psych regularly....so when they decided to release him, I didn't need the 24 hours to make doctor and therapy appointments.....THANK GOODNESS!!!! I could not get out of work fast enough that day!

When Trenton walked out of the hospital, he grabbed my hand and said, "I want home." and then he started smiling and he hasn't stopped smiling since!!!

For the past several months, Trenton hasn't been happy. He has been walking on egg-shells which makes me walk on egg shells because I never knew when he was going to snap and explode. When he exploded he went into a rage where he was trying to hurt himself and everyone around him.  Over the past several months many people have said, "Something isn't right. He can't be happy like this." and I agreed with them. He needed something that he wasn't getting.

I was in the process of working with one of his doctors in trying to change and get Trenton on the right medicines.  It is very hard to find the right medication because at an outpatient doctor appointment, the doctor can only observe the patient for so long, they don't witness the episodes, and then if the medicine didn't work you have to wait a few months until you can get back into the doctor. In some cases, such as Trenton's, it ended up requiring a hospitalization because he was getting to be too dangerous to himself and others.  Through the hospitalization, the doctors are able to observe the patient over a much longer period of time. Trenton's episodes would happen a few times out of the day but you never knew when it was going to happen. You couldn't be around him for a few hours at a time....one needs to be with him for a few days so they can witness the reality of what was going on.
During his length of stay at the hospital, they most definitely saw what I was talking about. The doctor diagnosed Trenton with having Disruptive mood dysregulation dissorder. (DMDD) Disruptive mood dysregulation disorder is a childhood condition of extreme irritability, anger, and frequent, intense temper outbursts. DMDD symptoms go beyond  being a “moody” child—children with DMDD experience severe impairment that requires clinical attention.

One of Trenton's very first therapist told me...."Trenton's autism is very severe. Don't be surprised if he is later diagnosed with some mood disorders and other disorders that often go along with severe autism." She was right. She said this because she had witnessed some episodes. Trenton has always had these episodes but they were much fewer and farther between when he was a younger.

Nonetheless, he came home on some medication changes and adjustments and he has been one happy boy the past 48 hours!!! I haven't seen this in him for months!
The past several months we were trapped in our house worse than ever...we literally never stepped out unless it was school or work or therapy. I had one too many episodes of him attacking people in stores .....so we  became prisoners in our own home....worse than ever!

I hope and pray that this medicine keeps on helping and working for Trenton. He is an amazing little boy! He has to many challenges from his severe classic autism, severe sensory processing disorder, severe ADHD, and now DMDD.  I just want to do what is best for him to make him have the best life that he can possibly have.

Last week was Hell on Earth. I felt naked without him. Everywhere Trenton is....I am. I honestly felt that I wasn't whole....I wasn't me.  I am only away from him on Sunday afternoons when he visits his Dad. It wasn't right...it didn't feel right not being with him. A mental hospital is much different than a regular hospital. One can't sit in a room with their loved one all day....it is way different. I went five days without seeing.......I was a lost mother. However, if he keeps the smiles up and the amazing attitude that he has had the past two days....then those five days in Hell on Earth was worth every second!

He got a treat and we went swimming at our neighbors yesterday.

We have stayed home all weekend trying to keep things low key and normal. We did go out into Burger King. Gracie missed Trenton and they needed to work together again.
Later in the day, Trenton grabbed my hand and said, "I want McDonald's fries." WOW!!! That is some good talking from him!!! I hope his great use of words keep it up on this medicine too!
This was Trenton's face the second he walked in home. He was so happy to be home!!
This was us walking out of the hospital on Friday as a family of three....finally!!!!

Sunday, May 13, 2018

Toughest Decision To Date

Today, on Mother's Day, I had to make a decision that I never thought I would ever have to make when I became a mother. A decision that no mother should have to make.
Instead of Mother Day celebrations, this weekend I have been restraining my own child repeatedly. I've been watching my first born son destroy my house, hurt me, hurt his brother, and it is hard to stop him. I've been left in tears numerous times the past 24 hours. He has a rage of anger that takes over him and one can't stop him until it is over and then he crashes for a while until it starts up again.
I've been in communication with his BCBA this weekend and there  was no other choice than to call the hospital. His 70 pound body has the strength of a 150 pound young man.
Tomorrow Trenton is going to be admitted to a behavioral health hospital.

I remember when Trenton was a toddler and I heard stories of families having to do what I am forced to do. It seemed so far off....I didn't think my son would grow up to be an aggressive one. Sadly, he has.
This life isn't easy. It is full of trials. Instead of celebrating my amazing mom today...instead of celebrating Mother's Day I am in constant thought about leaving my baby in a hospital tomorrow and being forced to leave him. Why does life have to be so hard?!?!?

No matter how much he hurts me physically. No matter how many things I have to do that I DON"T WANT TO DO  but I know it is for his own good, he will always be my baby! Today, as I am getting prepared for this whole new chapter in our autism life, one that I never thought would enter our life, I am remembering the happy baby times of the little boy who first made me a mommy.






When I have to leave him tomorrow, I am not leaving my out of control seven year old non verbal son with autism who has dangerously aggressive behaviors...I am not thinking about any of that.... Instead I am in pure hell because I am leaving my baby!

Thursday, April 19, 2018

Introduction


It is time for an introduction.
Thank you so much for following our story. I started blogging years ago but only started my Facebook page three years ago. 

I am a single mom to two little boys. I was just your average woman living life to the fullest until my life changed dramatically one day. I gave birth to my oldest son, Trenton. By the age of 15-18 months there was no doubt he had autism. He received the official diagnosis two weeks before his second birthday.  He vocal stims a lot. He is a severe, classic autism case. He is non-verbal and unable to communicate. Therefore, he has many meltdowns and trantrums.   He will never be independent. He rarely makes eye contact and he lives in his own world. Trenton attends school a few hours each day and then he goes to Harsha Autism Center the rest of his day. 
His life is hard. Our life is hard. If you really want to know more about our life, follow our story! I share it all!!!

My other son, Andrew, is 6 1/2. He was diagnosed with high functioning autism at the age of 2 1/2. He attends Kindergarten. He has an amazing memory. He has issues with anxiety and always has to be told what to do. He rarely can figure things out without being explained what to do.

I was forced to go back to work a few months ago. I am a teacher and have my bachelors in special education. For five years I was highly involved in Trenton's therapy. However, after my ex husband left a few years ago, being able to stay home and being actively involved in helping Trenton soon became impossible. I had to go back to work. Needless to say, I am BUSY! I have two little boys to support....therapy appointments to make....needs of a severely disabled child to make.....needs of my youngest son to make....needs of a homeowner....dr appointments...caseworker appointments.....need I say more?!!? I AM BUSY!!!

On most days I pass myself coming and going and barely have time to catch my own breath. However, I have two little boys who depend on me and need me daily.

I am also a freelance writer and published author. My book can be found here

I write on life with severe autism. I write on ABA therapy, toilet training, and anything else that happens in our crazy autism world.  I write on all the emotions that we as parents face on this journey. I write on just about everything and I hold NOTHING back. This life isn't easy and I am here to let others know they aren't alone. We all know as fellow autism parents that this journey is a lonely one. I know I can't get through this life without you all!

Trenton just got a service dog a few weeks ago. Gracie is her name and we are slowly adjusting to life with her!





Thanks again for following our story! I am honored to have 5800 likes. I don't promote my page. I don't do anything to try to get likes. I just simply share a very small fraction of our life and hope you can either relate or learn something for us.
Thanks for following and thanks for sharing our stories, post, and page.

Saturday, March 31, 2018

Sunday, March 11, 2018

No Words



What does it feel like to have a non-verbal child with severe, classic autism?

I have tried to find the perfect way to describe what it feels like but there are simply no words. I have opened a dictionary and searched it up and down for the perfect word to describe the pain, but there isn't any words. It's indescribable.

Yes, I live in this world just like you. I lay my head down on a pillow each night. I open my eyes in the morning and thank the Lord for another day. I enjoy watching the latest TV shows (when I get a chance which is  slim to none.) I cook, clean, do laundry, mow the yard, gain a few pounds from time to time just like you. I pump gas in my car. I go grocery shopping. I do almost everything that a normal, American does.I am much like you.  BUT....I do it behind one of the worst pains in the world.

I would love for my son to look me in the eye and smile. I would do anything for him to communicate to me what he feels like and how much he loves me. I would love for him to acknowledge my existence in this world. But, after 7 1/2 years I still don't get any of it. I doubt I ever will.

I cry each and every day. I just want to know for ONE MINUTE what it feels like to share joint eye contact and love. I want simply for one time to feel a touch from him, his arms wrapped around my broken body....I want to hear him say, "I love you so much , Mom."

I have sacrificed everything since he entered this world. Our life has been turned upside down and then some...... and we aren't getting any close to one of the things that I want the most in life.

I want to lay my head down at night and to wake up each morning without the fear and anxiety of what his future holds. In reality, that will never happen. You see...when you love someone so much, it simply hurts to see them hurt. Yes, my son hurts. He hurts every single day. He cries every single day due to his challenges of classic autism. He cries. I cry.

When you love someone, you sacrifice and do whatever it takes for them. I will always do that for my T-man. No matter what kind of life we have to live, I will live it for him. That is what love does.

Hope, when you love someone you hold on to hope. I hope that one day, just one time, I can know what it feels like to have my son show me love. I want that natural, tight hug that loved ones give to each other. I want to have a conversation with him even if it is on his AAC device,.I long for a conversation so bad that it hurts. It breaks my heart more each and every single day.

But, until that happens, I will continue to live behind my broken heart and one of the worst pains known to a parent. I will continue to go about my daily life, doing what is best for the boys and myself. I will always greet you with a smile. I will always pretend that I am just fine.

We have learned to adjust to his special needs. However, I will never be fine with the fact that my own son lives in his own world and can't even acknowledge me, hug me, have a conversation with me, kiss me, smile at me with joint attention, etc etc etc. That I can never get used to..........One can never adjust fully to one of the worst pains that will never go away until you take your last breath......simply no words to describe.



Saturday, March 10, 2018

Potty Training Tips-Post 1

(Trenton on potty training with his ABA therapist in June 2015)

Potty training is not a simple task when it comes to autism in general, especially when it comes to non-verbal severe autism. I want to share a few tips that I learned and found important when I successfully trained Trenton, who has non-verbal severe autism.

1. The environment is crucial. Sometimes kids on the spectrum are very sensitive to the sound of a toilet flushing, bathroom fan,  temperature of the room as well as the temperature of the toilet seat, or simply the echo that a small room such as a bathroom has. If your child is sensitive to these, you will need to do what you can to make the room a little more pleasing to your child. Examples would be to not flush the toilet when your child is in the bathroom. Just make sure if you have a child sensitive to these that you make adjustments BEFORE you start the toilet training process.

2. You MUST have a good motivator to get your child into the bathroom. The motivator has to be something that is pleasing and motivating to your child. If your child really likes the a certain video on youtube, then use that. The key is that your child will only be allowed to have that while they are in the bathroom on the toilet.

I had a hard time coming up with something for Trenton because he was not into much when he started training. After I tried different things, I finally had success with a mini-laptop. I bought him a mini-kids laptop and he only got that when he was sitting on the toilet. When he was done, I put the laptop up where he could not get it. This was very motivating for Trenton!

After the first six months of training, Trenton got to where he did not want to go into the bathroom at all. He would go into a meltdown. Finally, after a few months of battling this, one day I completely changed my bathroom d├ęcor to Sesame Street. I bought a Sesame Street shower curtain, put sesame street stickers all over the walls. HE LOVED IT!! He only go to go into this certain bathroom when he was on the potty. I made him use the other bathroom for baths. HE LOVED his new Sesame Street bathroom. I'm not going to lie when I say I spent a lot of money in 18 months trying to get Trenton successfully trained!

3. When your child successfully goes in the toilet, give him immediate praise! Praise your child with whatever motivates them and what they like. Trenton love it when I verbally praised him and he loved M&M's. Therefore, he got both! He ONLY got M&M's when he went in the toilet. Again, this was a huge motivator for him because he loved M&M's but ONLY got them when he went to the bathroom. Eventually, it plays a huge role. It won't at first because it takes time as anything does with autism. However, over time he realized that he only got those when he went in the toilet.....He didn't realize it for a year or so but he finally did.

4. Have visuals displayed in the bathroom.  Children with autism thrive off of visuals. By my toilet I had all the steps to going to the bathroom right there for him to see at all times. I had this displayed in my bathroom before we even started the process. If your child likes social stories, find a good social story for them to watch on YouTube. USE VISUALS!!!

5. Use short sentences. Children on the spectrum has difficulty understanding verbal instruction. Keep on commands very precise and short. Use sentences such as , "potty time.", "sit on toilet", "pull pants down". Do not say a big sentence such as...."okay not it is time to go to the bathroom and try to potty." This is WAY to much for a child with autism to understand and comprehend. Everything needs to be short and precise.

I have many many more tips....stay tuned for more post on tips on how to train your child with non-verbal severe autism.

One of the most important things I can tell you as a parent is to be consistent and don't give up! It took me almost two years to get Trenton trained. I cried almost every day. IT WAS VERY DIFFICULT!!!!!! But, I stuck with it and Trenton finally got trained after two hard years!!!

Sunday, March 4, 2018

Swing

Swinging is great for kids with autism. It helps them stay focused.  The boys love this swing.

Friday, February 23, 2018

Grief



Are there certain rules to follow on grieving? Is a parent only allowed to grieve for a certain amount of time?

I hope no one ever tells you when and how long you are allowed to grieve because we are allowed to grieve our entire lives.
It's been six years since I have known that something was different with Trenton. Six years of knowing my child's life was going to be much harder than mine. Six years of knowing my life has been forever changed. Six years and I am still grieving every single day.

It is not easy waking up each day and living the trials of severe autism. I think numerous times a day, "If it is this hard on me, what is it like for him?" It is in fact much harder.
I watched my son suffer big time the other night. He has lots of "days" and "moments" that I don't talk about and keep to myself.
Also, he often has nights where he gets what Clary Fleischmann explained as, "ants crawling on her body with fire." He screamed and cried for hours. He paced the house crying. He slams his body down on the ground. He hits and attacks. He can't tell me what is wrong so he gets frustrated. His behaviors escalate quickly and Andrew and  I are usually his targets.

I have cried a lot lately. Maybe it is a combination that I am working now and unable to meet his needs like I have been able to? Maybe it is because this journey never gets better because he suffers a lot each and every day. Yes, he suffers. He cries because he is locked in his body and is unable to communicate .He knows what he wants but his brain doesn't allow him to communicate it nor does it allow him to use his AAC device.  His body does not allow him to sleep without certain medicines and sometimes his body chemistry gets totally out of whack that medicine doesn't even help.....so he walks around suffering because he is so tired but his body wont go to sleep. I know first hand how hard that is! He suffers from GI issues and has severe stomach pains daily. He lives in chronic stress which leaves him with severe headaches.....again I know first hand how much chronic stress can give a person a chronic headache and it is no fun! He can't feel his body at times and needs weights...he hears sounds that we don't even hear and sees things differently than we do. His sensory needs are severe. If I had time to meet his needs like I should be, he should be getting sensory breaks every half hour to a hour every day but I can't exactly provide that.

So, yes I still grieve all these years down the road. Someone once told me that I haven't accepted my child's life if I am still grieving. That could not be further from the truth. I honestly just laugh at that remark. Grief never goes away if you truly love someone because it makes you sad to see how they suffer. Living with the grief becomes easier but deep down you are still allowed to grieve and mourn for your loved one.
As we both get older and as the world keeps getting more cruel, I fear for his life on this Earth. It is not an easy world to live in without disabilities......so just think how hard it is to live in with a major, severe disability that leaves you permanently dependent on others your entire life.

So to all the other parents of severe kids with disabilities....it is okay to grieve your entire life! We are allowed to!!! In fact, if you are like me, if you let yourself have a good cry, you will feel much better for awhile.

Wednesday, February 21, 2018

Football plays

 Andrew loves to write football plays!!! He always wants me to give them to coach Uncle Brian.



Saturday, February 17, 2018

Boys

Continued prayers for these two little boys. Andrew still having issues in Kindergarten and trying to adjust to me working.

 Trenton continues to have the hardest life of anyone I know.  He needs an active mommy in his therapies and I  can't be now that I have been forced to work.....makes me sooooooooo sad.  For the first time ever this week, I wasn't able to stick up for him when I should have but I simply can't do it all.

Saturday, February 3, 2018

T-man is getting it back!



Restaurants used to be impossible with Trenton. I have worked and worked with him since he was a toddler on trying to make it through a pleasant restaurant experience with him. I have went through a lot with him on trying to achieve this step. Many experiences lasted no longer than two minutes. Over the years we have slowly worked our way up to ten minutes then fifteen, etc.

The thing that helped the most was consistency and always going to the same restaurant. Once he was able to achieve a successful experience in that restaurant then I would add one new one and work on that place while also going back to the familiar one too.

Trenton got really good at restaurants about  a year ago. However, this past August/September he declined big time. Trenton went into a regression. His normal routine was thrown off a few times, school was added into his schedule, etc. Therefore, everything went downhill. One of the things that declined was his behavior in public, such as a restaurant experience. Even though he went through a very difficult phase, I was still very brave and tried restaurants. We didn't last very long on some days. He would sit down at the booth and scream repeatedly. He would go into a meltdown, hit, and try to escape, etc. Therefore, for a many weeks I stopped taking him out in public. He needed to get his routine and behavior under control before we could master our public restaurant experience.

Slowly over time  his schedule got back on track, he got used to school and his new schedule. Therefore, I slowly introduced his familiar restaurants to him. He started achieving them again! FINALLY!!!

Today, he went to a new place and loved it! I had a birthday this past week so my parents came up today to take us out to eat. I had Andrew pick my birthday lunch and he picked IHOP. As always, I am so proud of him. Every thing is baby steps with us and sometimes we are forced into regression due to life happening but we slowly make our way back to where we were! I am happy to report that T-man is doing well in restaurants, again! (FYI......well for us would probably be bad to most people. He vocally stims and is impulsive, and fidgets but we make it through!)

Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Uncle Bob

Last week I went back to Flora for my Uncle Bob's funeral.  He had one beautiful service. It was so amazing to see everything that the town of Flora did for their mayor, my uncle. The huge flag at the cemetery was very touching.

I was able to attend his visitation and funeral only because of a few nice ladies who watched the boys for me. Watching  Trenton is not easy to watch. Trenton was at my parents house and in a familiar place so that made it better for him. I am forever grateful for this group of women who took on the task of watching them so I could spend the time with my family.

I was lucky and got a volley that was shot in the 21 gun salute at his grave. I will cherish this forever.

This is one of my favorite pictures of Uncle Bob and the boys:)
We always loved going to see him and Aunt Barb on Halloween.
I have many memories of my uncle. I will leave you with a memory that he took to his grave.....Growing up he lived right up the road from us. The summer I was thirteen years old I found myself in a pickle. My dad worked night shift and was in the house with a broken arm. I was bored so I took my dads truck out for  a drive which I did often. I loved driving my dads truck up and down the country roads and in the dirt roads between the fields. Well, unfortunately I got his truck stuck. I knew my dad would not be happy. There was no way I could wake him up with a full cast on his arm.

I called my mom at work and she said to wait till she got home or see if Bob was home. I got off the phone with her and looked down the road toward his house and saw his truck was home. I called Bob and told him about my dilemma. He met me at the site I was stuck in. He pulled me out. After he got the truck out, he looked at me and said, "Jimmie don't need to know about this." Uncle Bob saved the day and my dad just recently knew about this for the first time. Uncle Bob kept his secret and never told a soul:)

Friday, January 26, 2018

Ernie

Trenton drew this picture yesterday. A few ladies I know were watching him while I was at my uncle's visitation.  I came home and they showed me this.  When Trenton looks at the picture,  he says "Ernie." I'm sure it's Ernie from Sesame Street.

Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Stress With A Capital S



Single parenting in general is hard. When you mix autism into the combination, it is very difficult.  There is rarely any peace or relaxation when it is just me and the boys. Trenton is on the go 24/7 and has to be watched like a hawk. He can't communicate his needs. He has maldaptive behaviors and very challenging behavior daily, sensory challenges, needs bathroom help both on the toilet and in the bath, flight risk & eloper, no sense of danger, no common sense,  doesn't play with toys, often has sleep challenges, and the list goes on and on.

In our house we do not know what down time is because there is none! There is no quiet time! It doesn't happen in our autism house. IT. DOESN"T. HAPPEN.

I can't get groceries with Trenton. I can't simply run a quick errand with him.  I can't take him to my doctor appointments. I can't take him to his brothers events. I can't take him over to someone's house. Everything we do from going through a drive thru to a simple trip into McDonalds takes a lot of planning and mental preparation.

Brushing his teeth is not possible yet at the age of 7 1/2. Simply getting a haircut is not an easy task and often leaves him in a meltdown. Everything takes full preparation and very strategic planning......even the simplest of things.

What happens when "life" happens and you have stress from other factors in life. What happens when a family member gets really sick? What happens when you suffer the loss of a loved one? If you think back to when you were a kid and your parents suffered the loss of a loved one.....I am sure the majority of you did what I did and had common sense to behave and to be good because your parents were grieving. That doesn't happen here and will never happen for me!

I've been rather stressed since the passing of my Uncle Bob. My uncle and aunt have been wonderful to me and I have many wonderful great memories with them from childhood all the way to just a few months ago. I can't grieve like a normal niece should be able to. I can't pick up and immediately drive back home to be with my family. Instead, it has been non-stop planning of what to do with my kids during his visitation and funeral. What should be a time of grief is nothing but more stress.
Tonight it was all hitting me what the next two days will entail. I just wanted a nice, quiet evening to mentally prepare myself. Quite?!?!? HA! It just doesn't happen!!! It especially doesn't happen when you are single and the only adult in the house.

To add to the stress my Grandfather fell and is in a nursing home too. I have yet to be able to see and visit him. I start a job next week and unfortunately had to quit a few therapies for Trenton. I am drowned in guilt for that. What does a single parent do?!?!? I need food on the table for my babies and he needs therapy. But what do you do when it is only you? Sometimes in life, you are not able to make a decision for yourself. You are often left with no choice!

All of this is stressful enough for a typical family. We are not a typical family......so you can only imagine the stress that all of this adds to autism families. It is not just my family....it is autism families in general!




Monday, January 22, 2018

Everything Is Hard

Life with autism brings challenges to every aspect of your life. In the regular day to day challenges, you eventually find what works for you and it becomes your families normal. While you are living in your "normal" tragic life events happen. Every family goes through sickness and death. It is hard for everyone and when it hits an autism family, it makes what should be easy and manageable, very difficult.

As most of you know, I am a single mom who lives two hours away from my parents and closest family. It is not easy to manage life but I do. I miss a lot of family events and events I want to attend but it becomes normal to me to miss a lot of things. However, what has been eating at me is the fact that I have a loved one who has been in a hospital three hours from me since December 12th and I am unable to be there. I haven't been able to be there once.

I have a child with severe classic autism. The only place  he is really happy at is at home. If he goes anywhere else, it is for a very short time. I can't take him grocery shopping so a three hour drive to a hospital will not happen for him. Maybe it does for some with autism but not my son. Half the time he won't step foot in Wal-mart and when he does he goes into sensory overload and has a meltdown and I am forced to carry him out. So a hospital visit is impossible.
What does a mom like me do in these situations?
What do you do when you get the call and hear that there isn't anything left to do for your loved one?  Again, I can't just pick up and go,

There are so much more to the challenges of autism. It's just not the daily routine that is hard.....families like ours can't do anything without strategic planning and the right people there to help you. But, when it is a family issue and all family is involved in the same family matter.....it just really stinks.

I post this for awareness.  In times of family grief you still can't grieve and be there for your other loves ones because of autism. EVERYTHING is hard and nothing happens without very detailed planning because the smallest issue can arise huge problems and cause regression.



Tuesday, January 16, 2018

McDonald's

Trenton got his own ice, sprite,  lid, and straw at Mc Donalds today.  This is huge for us!!!!

Friday, January 5, 2018

Scripting



Scripting is very common with individuals on the spectrum. In fact, we all use scripts. When we say, “How are you?” this is a script. We may not really want to know how someone is doing or we may not even realize we said it; this is merely a script that people say upon meeting one another.

People with autism may memorize short or long pieces of dialogue, especially from frequently watched TV shows, movies or others conversations. Sometimes they may use scripts in ways that are an attempt at communication or they may start scripting when under stress and processing becomes difficult. When Andrew was 2 1/2 and 3, he scripted a lot. He memorized everything and spoke mostly in scripts and echolalia which is repeating back.
When individuals on the spectrum script who are high functioning, this is a great sign that they can learn from role playing. If you do a lot of role playing they can learn what to say at appropriate times.

Scripting appears to give comfort and security to people with autism. It can act as a sound buffer from overwhelming sounds and voices as well. Trenton scripts a lot. Trenton will walk around and say his ABC's or he will say, "Baby Einstein Mozart", "Blues Clues ABC's" or he will shout out the names to all of his Sesame Street friends names. Trenton is simply scripting learned DVD names and learned names to his favorite character. He does this when he is stressed. A lot of the time this will be one of the first signs that he is getting stressed. He also does it when he is pacing and needing to move.


Tuesday, January 2, 2018