we have moved!

Now as many of you understand moving is far from easy for our Aspies. The change is hard for everyone but so much harder if you like things to stay the same and you feel safe in your comfort zone.

The move was big! a new country! a few days driving to get there!!

My hat goes off to my son who really not only kept it together for the whole drive but also for the few weeks of mad packing. For me the hard bit was getting him to keep things. You see the throw his heart and soul into sorting and throwing everything away. I found it so hard to get him to keep things he may want later on. That is 180 degrees turn around from normal and looking back it should have rang an alarm bell. He was ‘coping’ far too well. I was so wrapped up in the move and the packing I lost sight of how he was feeling.

We had talked a lot about the move before hand, now that was good but the reality is so different. The stress he was feeling was bottled up. If you like it was showing in the way he throw everything out!! I just failed to connect the dots.

Now we have been here for around one month and the stress is showing. So we are working on de-stress, this is with massage, structured days, plenty of talking about subjects he loves. Getting a new doctor who understands my son and his medication. Allowing for the days when he is low.

There is an up side 🙂 we have a few really…. 🙂

  1. Showering has become a no problem area. Now I have waited a long time for that to happen!
  2. Working on his online courses, that has become a really good out let and he has fallen in love with computer languages. The hard bit is how to get him to stop working and have down time.
  3. A new doctor that cares and knows what they are on about! the good bit is I really think he is getting the care he needs and both my son and the doctor are doing a medication review 🙂 🙂
  4. The chance to change his daily routine to one that offers adult structure for his day. As he throw out nearly all his childhood things.
  5.  For my son one benefit is faster internet speed.
  6. He has his own bathroom.

So while we have a lot of changes, some planned, some not. He is working well through them and I hope we see more personal growth towards adult life and interests. For now we will work on settling into a new home and having structure allowing for my son to settle.

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Lies all lies!!

Well life loves to throw a curved ball to keep me on my toes!!

My son was having a tired and angry time and shouted out ‘Why did you teach me to lie!!?’

After scrapping myself of the floor and really trying to think when and where this ‘crime’ had happened ???? We chatted about this……….

It turns out that from years ago I had told him to not say what he thought but to say something nice. Now here is an example of this. My daughter, his ‘beloved’ (ok I am stretching this by miles!) sister may ask ‘Do I look nice in this?’ my poor son will struggle here as for him:

1. The strappy top is off the shoulders. He hates things not to be straight!!!

2. He has old fashioned views on clothes, where as my daughter is young and love fashion.

3. She drinks and smokes!!! he hates both!! there is a five year gap and his sister is the oldest. Enough said! He’s 20 she’s 25.

4.Fashion doesn’t always fit with my son idea of clothes to wear!

So when the dreaded question is asked, he can explains everything he sees as wrong, from the shoulder strap hanging lower on one side than the other, to his views of how horrible the skirt is! Not what my daughter asked, often, not even asked him but asked me and my son was in the same room! Well we would get meltdowns as he would not understand how being honest (to be fair a value I want to see in any of my children) can be at least painful or at worst seen as out right rude!!

I told my son just to say nothing or if pushed find something he likes to comment on.

Given food or drink when out or sharing a meal at some ones else’s home:

1. Not to demand how or what food to be placed where. This can be a problem as he is sharp about his wishes and this can be seen as demanding!

2. Not to ‘inspect’ the glasses his drink comes in! he struggles with other people not washing up their glasses right.

3. If he dislikes something on his food plate to just leave it without comment.

To him this is lying, to miss out part or all that he really feels is lying.

To not tell a person what he has bought for their birthday or if a night is planned that they don’t know about is lying!

When some one chats away and tells him some gossip to not tell anyone, makes him feel he is holding in a lie!!

So how to help with the burden he feels around these areas seems to be my next task.

If any of you have some nuggets of information, ideas of how to help place it in the comments and help us out 🙂

Christmas is coming

Now over the years I have got to hate Christmas, as for my son, the changes that this holiday gave were too much for him. I hated the bright lights, loud music, and massive change of routine. My son would have so many melt downs and it got to a place where I not only dreaded the season, but was angry at so many people who just didn’t get what we would go through. At home the tree was a focus of his upset, decorations were torn down as fast as I put them up.
Once while I was moaning to his psychologist about how upset he was over the Christmas holiday. She told me to take off half the tree decorations, stop any flashing lights, stick to his routine (such as it was!) and tell her how that went. I felt I had been pushed aside, no real help give. Still I did what she had said, I took down half the tree’s decorations. I only put the lights on a soft glow for a short while each night. Took down most the rooms decorations and all the shiny ones. I kind of hoped she would be wrong, but you know what….. Magic happened, calm descended on our home. Melt downs were greatly reduced. I had a tree and decorations but these didn’t upset my son! My daughter had decorations up without the whole fights with her brother.
I guess I want to share that just because things have been/can be really hard, doesn’t mean that they will always stay hard. We did a small (in the great scheme of things) change and from that day our Christmas’s have improved. They have become what I wanted, a time of family and peace.
Now the kids are not kids, but in fact young adults, it is easier again. We sit around and plan what we want to do, and eat, who cares if he wants a curry or pancakes! and decorate with mostly happy results. I just want to say if Christmas is a hard time of year for you and your family, seek help, share ideas that help and support families, if you know they are having a hard time.
If you are the one having a hard time, know your not alone and you all do come out the other side, tired, yes, but you come through it. Make small changes that work for you and your family, forget the rest.
Plan with your ASD person in mind and allow yourself time off from trying too hard. That is the best thing I ever did over the Christmas and it has got better and better as the years have rolled on.