A slap in the face...

iVillage Member
Registered: 10-13-2010
A slap in the face...
6
Tue, 12-20-2011 - 8:46pm

I am engaged to a man who has an 8 year old son who, at a very young age, was diagnosed with Autism, Aspergers, and PDD. I have never been around anyone with an Autism diagnosis. My children have never been around anyone with Austism. We are trying very hard to understand. My 11 year old son has been referred to a therapist for possible Autism or Aspergers...or possible outright anger issues.

We have been together for over a year. At that time, his 8 year old lived with his mother. He now lives with us..he has since June. Most things have been wonderful. My kids and his kids have mostly gotten along. We've had some minor issues that in a non-blended family would be normal sibling rivalries. The only truly major issue we have had has been over video games. He has always let his son play as long as he wanted to. I have always limited the amount of time for my kids. Because we didn't know his son would be staying with us, he does not have a game console in his room. However, my son has as X-Box, and my daughter has a Wii..we have a PS2 in the family room. There is normally enough time each evening for each child to play for an hour on the PS2 if they want to; aside from homework and dinner. My children do not play everyday...they enjoy doing other things. We have always used game consoles as a thing for a rainy day...or something to do on a weekend day. 8yo will ask to play every day..which is fine. DF and I agreed that each could play for an hour.....until 8yo said it wasn't enough time for him. NOW, DF says he didn't really want to agree to an hour.

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-15-2004
Wed, 01-25-2012 - 9:15pm

i am late to the discussion, but it seems to me one issue has not been considered.

iVillage Member
Registered: 10-13-2010
Mon, 01-02-2012 - 9:36pm

Wow...not sure what to answer first...!! :)

Yes, he has been telling me over and over again about the video games..we've discussed several times. He didn't give it to me as 'advice'...it's always after something becomes an issue that he says that something has to be a certain way. Only after my kids come to me with feelings that something isn't 'fair'. I realize that all kids are different..whether they have special needs or not. Trying to blend a family is hard...trying to do it with a child who has Autism seems impossible some days. His 8YO is mainstream schooled...he is very high functioning. Most days, he does have any 'symptoms' of autism...

Which brings me to my son...the things he does, are things he's always done. But, because DF has the knowledge of autism/aspergers, he connects behaviors and personality traits together in a way I would never have thought of. When my son gets stressed...he blinks..very rapidly. He's been doing it for a very long time. He also has almost no sense of empathy...which makes things between him and 8YO very strained. He tries to joke around with people, and it only comes across as him sounding mad. He gets angry very easily...and has a very one sided sense of fairness. He has a lot of traits that can be atributed to Aspergers...but it could also just be anger. Anger at his dad for lying and 'making' me divorce him...angry at me for not giving his dad another chance...angry at his sister for being older and getting to do more (she's 16)...angry that 8YO 'seems to get his way' or get babied all the time.

I am so frustrated right now. I get that he has 8 years of experience to my 6 months...which is why I DO ask him about things. What I have a problem with is that if I don't ask...he doesn't tell. He assumes I'm just gonna know it's the autism...how do I know that?? IS it the autism

iVillage Member
Registered: 12-22-2007
Tue, 12-27-2011 - 5:40pm

Darkeyedhoney, I hope you had a lovely Christmas.

I get that it's hard for your kids to understand the different rules if they've never been around other kids who have disabilities.

iVillage Member
Registered: 10-13-2010
Sun, 12-25-2011 - 1:37pm

I understand 'different rules for different kids'...I even partially understand using video games as 'therapy'. MY issue was HOW he told me the Dr agreed with him. With the 'lol' and the 'it's what I've been telling you'. My children and I have never been around anyone with autism...we've never had to have different rules for different kids. It's very difficult for me to help my children understand why 8yo can be on the game more. And surprise, it's Christmas...he now has a Wii for his room.

iVillage Member
Registered: 12-22-2007
Wed, 12-21-2011 - 9:59pm

darkeyedhoney, I have a 14yo son who has autism and a 12yo daughter who doesn't.

Avatar for Cmmelissa
iVillage Member
Registered: 11-13-2008
Wed, 12-21-2011 - 4:12pm
I would be very hesitant to put a Wii in his room also. I think it's pretty common for boys his age to struggle with frustration while playing video games, I know that mine does. I think it's wise to be able to monitor him when he's playing so you can intervene when he's about to lose control. You could always use the goal of having one in his room later on as a way to work with him on controlling his temper.

I hope that you can make your DF understand why you need to work together on rules for the family.