does this sound like Aspergers?

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-09-2003
does this sound like Aspergers?
8
Fri, 01-12-2007 - 11:12am

I'd love your opinions on this. I know that no one can diagnose, but I'm just wondering if any of this sounds familiar to you. I have a 3.5 year old son, Jacob. He's had some delays and some issues since he was about 18 months old. He's diagnosed with Apraxia and some sensory issues. He's currently receiving speech therapy, physical therapy, and occupational therapy through the school district. I have yet to take him to a neurologist or developmental ped. We did have him evaluated when he was about 30 months old and they felt that he was not on the spectrum, and his behaviors could be accounted for by his current diagnoses. I often wonder about AS and whether this could account for all his quirks. I'm wondering if you think it's worth pursuing (a dev. ped), or if only time will tell. In a nutshell,
- Jake is more comfortable around adults than kids his age
- he can socialize, but often prefers not to (saying things like "I want to play by myself", or "I don't like other kids")
-he had many sensory issues, but most seem to be resolved or minimized now
-he has an extremely hard time sharing, or waiting his turn (more so than others his age)
-he is very controlling and insists on things being a certain way (although what things and what way often changes)
-he'll set up his toys in specific arrangements and insist on them not being moved -so it's very difficult to play with him without annoying him or angering him when you move the toys where he doesn't want them to go
-he's easily frustrated
-his feelings are easily hurt
-he has very little empathy & rarely attempts to comfort others (doesn't even seem affected if they're upset -couldn't care less)
-tends to hoard toys and won't let others play with or look at them (even if he's not actively playing with them)
-says things not typical for his age (ex -i picked him up from preschool the other day and asked how his day was -his response was "I don't want to talk about it mom. I just want to relax" that's word for word btw)
- he has a great imagination and loves to build cities or robots or shops
-does tend to get a bit obsessive with certain things for awhile, but then it transfers to something else (loved tools for about a year and a half, now hardly plays with them much, but is into Power Rangers and rescue figures)
-more interested in things than people
-will make movements like a power ranger, and when asked if he's a power ranger will say "No, I'm a boy", and act irritated that I didnt' know that already - does this anytime I ask "are you a ...." the only acceptable word is boy
-Often talks with a very condescending attitude (odd for a three year old, huh?)
-he's very good at puzzles
-sometimes randomly flicks his fingers or shakes his head side to side
-had to be taught to point, say hi when said hi to, nod head yes or no, etc
-very awkward and "clumsy" -has a mild gross motor delay (for which he receives PT)
-does like playing with mom and dad -but he needs to direct the play
-resents his little brother, and is often aggressive with him (despite time outs, etc)
-doesn't like kisses, but will occassionally tolerate hugs. He can be snuggly at times but it's usually short lived and only on his terms
-hyperforce go, Avatar, Power rangers, etc) he's able to follow the story lines on cartoons meant for older children (Super robot monkey team hyperforce go, Avatar, Power rangers, etc)

I could go on and on. He's definately a different kind of kid and full of quirks, but I'm not sure if it's due to possible AS or just him being a quirky loner. He seems to have a more difficult time with the simple things than other kids his age, but yet he seems almost smarter than them most of the time. I guess I'm just wondering why he is the way he is, and maybe AS would explain it? What do you think? Thanks for your time.

Jen

iVillage Member
Registered: 08-24-2004
Tue, 02-20-2007 - 10:02pm

Hi Jen,


I didn't read any of your replies yet, but I had to write my own. You PERFECTLY DESCRIBED my daughter.. it gave me the goosebumps to read your post. My daughter Kayden was dx. mild/moderately autistic at a very early 18 months of age by a neurodevelopmental pediatrician, however, I knew there was something "not right" a few weeks after she was born. we then immersed her in tons of therapy -- OT, PT, Speech, special education, special play groups -- it was our lives. Today, Kayden is 3 years old and

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iVillage Member
Registered: 11-17-2003
Sat, 01-27-2007 - 12:23pm

Jen,

Again, not to diagnose, but your 3.5 year old son sounds JUST like my 3.5 year old son who was just dx'd with AS and mild PDD/NOS last week. For us, we observed things in him starting when he was a year to 18 months (hand flapping, head shaking, staring out the sides of his eyes) that were kind oddities and red flags, and then later things like toewalking continued to stand out. He received EI for speech from 2 to 3 - during which time his speech made great strides and he now is right on target and actually has quite sophisticated speech. He also received EI for Occupational Therapy for a few months after I demanded to have him reevaluated by the state, and he did SO well with that, I could really see him do better as a result of the sensory type therapies. Unfortunately, he didn't transition because his delays weren't quite severe enough to be picked up by the school district. However, several months later when I could see that he was really suffering from not receiving the OT anymore, I had him reevaluated and there was a real decrease in his scores, and he was picked up by the district for OT again. I won't go into the saga for the other things he qualified for but wasn't granted because we have a lousy district....

Anyway - I'm not saying to go find someone who will go give you a diagnosis just for the sake of having a diagnosis. I will say, though - that now that we have a diagnosis (and an accurate one, I believe - after the year or so of reading I've done) it's something that'll go on the school record, in the IEP and it'll just help get services that our son needs. And the earlier the better. I'd say it's worth consulting a neuro and dev. ped. just to see where you stand. Some physicians don't like making a formal diagnosis this young, but in my opinion, your son sounds SO much like mine. I wouldn't trade my son for the world, he is honestly a delightful, lovely, kid - quirks and all. I know that none of us here would trade our kids for anything. But we're all here to help them, and in our case, we figured helping meant bringing him to the doctor to see where we stood.

Best wishes!

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iVillage Member
Registered: 01-23-2007
Tue, 01-23-2007 - 6:19pm

Hi Jen!

I just want to say....WOW! Your son sounds almost identical to my son. He does the exact same thing your son does. My 4 1/2 year old was finally dx with Asperger's/PDD-NOS in December of 2006. He also loves puzzles, and will put a 200 piece puzzle together with no assistance in no time!

I would be very persistent with the doctors. Have you taken him to a pediatric specialist? Is he in pre-school? What do the speech therapist, and the other providers say about him? I would most definetly take him to a neurologist or developmental pediatrician. Tell them exactly what you posted here, and hopefully you will have some answers. Good luck!!

iVillage Member
Registered: 12-20-2004
Sat, 01-13-2007 - 11:05pm

From what I've learned, boys are quirky.

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Sat, 01-13-2007 - 7:34pm

Now I understand better.

You may want to get him diagnosed anyway because you may be able to access more supports and have a better understanding of him earlier. Like I said, even if he isn't fully ASD, he has enough quirks to benefit from many of the same approaches.

FYI, my son was tested, evaluated and recieved treatments starting at age 3. (Prior to that I was totally in denial about everything). I was still in denial at 3 when ASD was mentioned but he had other diagnosis (ADHD, SID, etc) and some supports. He wasn't diagnosed on the spectrum until he was 7 and I kick myself now. He missed out on a lot of supports that would have been immensely beneficial to him because of that and he now continues to have a lot of struggles because of it.

In his case he recieved minimal supports at an early age and would have qualified for much more had he had a correct diagnosis.

Renee

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iVillage Member
Registered: 05-09-2003
Sat, 01-13-2007 - 1:38pm

He's actually already receiving services. He was in EI (early intervention) from 18 months to 3 years old, and then transitioned to the school district. He's made GREAT improvements, but many of those quirks are still there. I guess, I'm just trying to understand them and account for them in someway. I was thinking that a concrete diagnosis would help give me some clarity, and as you said the school district doesn't really diagnose anything. But it seems like such a crap shoot/guessing game for the professionals as well, so I doubt it would really solve anything. We'll just keep on treating the issues that pop up and plodding along without a "name" for it. There is no easy way to describe Jake anyway! LOL. I kind of love that about him. Thanks for the input though!

Jen

iVillage Member
Registered: 06-25-2003
Fri, 01-12-2007 - 9:00pm

Jen,


Welcome to the board. I hope you find it useful to you.


Your son sounds very like my daughter in many ways. She is 6½ now, and still not officially diagnosed. Officially she is "at risk for Asperger's Syndrome".

-Paula

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iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Fri, 01-12-2007 - 2:57pm

It can be so hard to diagnose kids when they are young, particularly more verbal type kids.

That said, your son does have alot in common with AS kids and it is worth looking into. AND even if he is not determined to be fully on the spectrum it sure sounds like he would benefit from the therapies and treatments that are used for spectrum kids which is the point of diagnostics at a young age anyway.

So yeah, I would go again and see a developmental ped or similar. Make sure to try and find someone who specializes in ASD's so they will more likely be able to identify and meet the needs of a child who may be more mildly affected. Not that it is mild, just that it is not as obvious at a younger age so it takes a really trained professional to pick it out.

And I would start looking into the treatments that would help your son and start pushing for those now while he is still young. Figure out what you can implement at home and what services you are going to need for him to get.

Renee

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