Introducing us....

Avatar for teri_b
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-27-2003
Introducing us....
Fri, 06-30-2006 - 4:35pm

I've been lurking here for several months, but Asperger's has been a part of our lives for several years (no confirmed dx). Partially my fault because I haven't been able to acquire insurance. Partially because the small school he was attending did not have the resources to help him.

Josh turned 10 on 4/25. He just finished 4th grade - reads at about an 8th grade level, can do multiplication and division in his head, solves story problems in his head, and all in all is (to quote his teacher) "a very bright child". However, his social skills are dismal - he plays around other kids, not with them. Has no desire for team sports, but loves tae kwon do, and excelled in it before we had to drop out because of money problems. His handwriting and motor skills are delayed, and he worked with an OT at school one day a week to help with this. I honestly don't see much improvement - his kindy brother's handwriting and art projects could be interchangeable with Josh's. He obsesses with video games, and currently is fixated on his new pet turtle. In the past it's been water towers, windmills, etc. A simple "It works because..." does not do it for him as an answer - he wants details. When he's happy he often flaps his hands instead of laughing. When he's angry he turns into a feral child and grunts and claws at people. He stays with my father during the day while I work - my father volunteers for a heart rehab clinic and takes Josh with him. Josh will sit for 2-3 hours with his gameboy or a book and be so quiet that people forget he's there.

My ex-husband and I have split custody of his two half brothers, so there is a lot of turmoil in our house. The younger two are here for two weeks, then gone for two weeks in the summer, and during the school year we alternate weekends.

Josh has said that he "hates" his brothers because they are noisy and loud and make his head hurt. When they are here his negative behavior intensifies immensely. He does not grasp the concept of punishment for negative actions - time outs for tantrums and such do not work, nor do removing priviledges. They just cause MORE tantrums and negative behaviors (for instance, last weekend when he was sent to bed early for a serious misbehavior, he reacted by punching his bedroom window).

We recently moved and he will be starting a new school in the fall with more resources (IE a special needs teacher ON STAFF) - how do I approach the school with my concerns? I have not been able to get his doctor to refer us for a psych eval - because when he's at the doctor's he acts like a "normal, quiet child". His second grade teacher suggested it, but his teachers now (different school) don't think he has any problems other than being quiet and shy and having lousy handwriting. FWIW, his current school (not the one we're switching to) has VERY small class sizes - 18-20 per class plus teacher and parapro, and is half Amish - so noise and misbehaviors are not a problem in his classroom.

His brothers are 6.5 (lives with his father) and 3.5 (lives with me).

Am I correct in thinking I may have an Aspie on my hands?

Mommy to Josh (10), William (6.5) and Ryan (3.5)

iVillage Member
Registered: 10-03-2004
In reply to: teri_b
Sat, 07-01-2006 - 7:00am

Dear Teri,

There are red flags in what you write for sure. Obviously noone can dx ove the Internet, but if I were you I would look into having him evaluated, if for no other reason than to rule it out. He may be borderline, but that could still mean he needs some help. I believe you need to write a letter to school officially requesting evaluation for all areas of suspected disability. Ladies at IEP Board on iVillage will have advice on exactly what to do so school has to honor legal obligations, sometimes when child is very bright and doing well academically, the school may balk. But there is recourse. At the very least, for the handwriting...

Might you consider changing pediatricians? How dare a doctor disregard your serious request because he only sees him quietly sitting in the office? And you have decribed his difficulties? Shameful. You want a referral to neurological psychiatrist for evaluation, possibly a developmental pedicatrician, someone who specializes in dx'ing ASD. Sadly, many medical professionals are not knowledgable at all about ASDs, and there are many stories out there about parents being steered wrong by their own doctors.

How long has he been at new school? It is great that he is able to function at a school so well that teachers don't think there is a problem. He could be saving all his woes for the safety of home, though.

Good luck. Welcome here, whether he is an aspie or not. Let us know how things are going and if you have questions we can help with. or just to vent...



iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
In reply to: teri_b
Sun, 07-02-2006 - 9:08am

I think you are correct in as much as you should at least get him evaluated. Like Sara said, we can't diagnose via the internet but you have mentioned some red flags and you are concerned so it is probably prudent to start the process.

Regardless of the doctor you can request starting an educational evaluation through the school district, even if he isn't in public school. Schools have to evaluate all children when thier are concerns. You mention that he is going to a new school in the fall? Is it public or private? The rules regarding private schools are slightly different. But if they have a special ed teacher on staff I would ask that person first thing.

If you son has AS he may have been able to cover in school up to this point. Some cover for even longer. But typically by upper middle school things start to become tougher and they start to require a bit more support. Things are not as concrete, there are less visuals and more language based things in upper elementary (ie lectures or more auditory learning). There is a greater need for organization and independence/responsibility. It would be prudent to talk to special ed teacher at any rate.

I agree with switching docs or calling your current doc and insisting on a referral. When Cait was 3 we got alot of the same and not because she sat quietly, lol. But alot of wait and see, all kids are different, and no referrals. We finally paid privately for a speech eval that showed her significantly delayed. We brought that too our pediatrician and insisted on referrals. Pediatricians are not the end all and be all of child development. They are more general practioners and if there are concerns they should refer onto specialists.


iVillage Member
Registered: 06-25-2003
In reply to: teri_b
Sun, 07-02-2006 - 10:25pm

Hi Teri,

I don't have much to add to the excellent advice you received already. I just want to it up: We can't internet DX but I think it would be good to have him evaluated if you can.

But most of all, I wanted to welcome you out of lurkdom. I hope to get to know you more over then coming months.



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iVillage Member
Registered: 05-26-2000
In reply to: teri_b
Fri, 07-07-2006 - 10:34am

Hi Teri and Welcome!

I agree with everyone else and don't have anything to add, but I wanted to say hi and welcome!

Take care,
mom to Josh (6 AS) and Justin (2 nt)