I am trying to discern if my three and a half year old son has PDD-NOS, or high needs with Sensory Integration Dysfunction or if he's simply just an energetic little boy. I've posted this question in a couple of other forums because I don't know what is the best fit for him if any. He's definitely a handful for me and his preschool class, but I can't tell if that's because he's very much a boy, or if it's something else. Some of the things that I would say I'm concerned with are:
- Extremely high energy. He will sit still and focus when a book is being read to him, he's playing with his toy trains or he's watching TV, but other than that he's constantly in motion.
- Does not listen well. When he wants to do something or touch something you have to tell him six times till Sunday to stop and even then he'll try to argue his cause.
- Has extreme difficulty in transitioning. Even with a five minute warning he will still have melt downs if he doesn't want to cease and desist the activity he's engrossed in.
- Becomes very anxious when he senses an activity it coming to an end. For example, if you go for a walk and it's time to turn round and walk home he'll start to fuss to continue walking because he doesn't want the walk to end.
- Tends to hug people quite a bit. I've started to tell him that it's okay to hug his mummy and daddy, but a simple "hi" to other friends and adults is fine.
- In his preschool last year the teacher was frustrated because if a child initiated bad behaviour, Vaughan would immediately join in and continue even after the other child stopped.
- When he's in trouble and you tell him to look you in your eyes, you have to ask him repeatedly before he will do so (can't tell if that's because he knows he's in trouble and doesn't want to face the music.)
- Vaughan has always been high on the sleep scale and even now at 3 1/2 if he doesn't get his two hour nap (after sleeping 12 at night) his behaviour deteriorates and becomes unbearable and destructive.
- Hates having a bath and his hair washed.
- Between the ages of 2 yrs and 35 months had a phobia of leaves blowing on the ground.
- Sucks his thumb and attached to his blanky (but only sucks thumb when watching TV, being read a book or sleeping).
Now the positives:
- He is very empathic and loving to his siblings and friends. When I'm upset with him he'll cry "Mummy, I want you to be happy with me! Don't be sad!"
- Bright, articulate and creative - loves to read books and make up stories with his trains. Enjoys play dough.
- Friendly in preschool and never verbally or physically abusive with peers.
- Mischievous and funny - likes to make other people laugh.
- Athletic and enjoys playing games like soccer and tag with the neighbourhood kids.
I hope I've written enough to give you a sense of my little guy - it's a complex age and I don't want to slap a label on him, but I also don't want to not parent him according to his needs.
Vaughan Alexander 3/2/2002
Niav Elizabeth Wynn 28/9/2003
Simon Nathaniel 15/1/2005
and a Saint Bernard puppy