Just a little nuts

Just a little nuts
A blog about single parenting & autism

Monday, May 26, 2014

Eating and watching/Eating and drawing

The latest annoying quirk: Little Squirrel has convinced herself that she cannot tolerate "just eating." She insists to be watching something or drawing/coloring while she's eating. It's gotten so bad that whenever she even hears the word "eat" or "eating," even if it has nothing to do with her, she has to interrupt and insert "and draw" or "and drawing." Then she goes on to remind those around: because I don't like to JUST EAT.

Yes! We know! ugh! (my response usually goes something like that)

It's gotten so bad that she is now anxious about all eating events of the day that may happen, to the point she can't enjoy fun activities. For instance, today I told her we're going to the fair. Instead of just being happy about going to the fair, she interrogated me about whether or not we would eat there and if we do eat there then what can she do while she's eating, and then after the fair will we be having dinner at home, and if we have dinner at home can she watch something while she's eating...

I gave in about letting her watch tv (usually something short on Netflix like an episode of Curious George) while she eats awhile back after I tried to make a rule about no watching and eating. I told her she can draw or color or do homework or write in her journal or do activity books, etc while eating. And this is how that went during the meal:

Little Squirrel: Can you hear something?
Me: No
Little Squirrel: Now can you hear it?
She writes really hard with the pencil or pen so it makes a terrible scratching sound that is hard to ignore.
Me: Yes, can you stop it?
Little Squirrel: But I'm eating and drawing. Not just eating.

Basically, she wants me to HEAR and to be aware for the entire time that she is drawing and eating, not just eating, god forbid.

God help me, seriously...

Saturday, May 17, 2014

Three's a crowd

Today at a playdate with A. (Little Squirrel's best friend at school) I found out more about the real cause of the horrible social problems that have been escalating since around January. I started having emails and meetings with Little Squirrel's teacher about problems with another girl in class. Little Squirrel and E. have had a "frenemy" thing going on that seemed to have come out of nowhere. I was confused because I thought Little Squirrel and A. were BFFs, so why take time for psychological warfare with this girl, E.? And all this girl E. seems to do all day is say, "I'm not your friend" to Little Squirrel, which makes Little Squirrel instantly burst into tears until E. says, "I was just kidding!" EVERY TIME! Then E. does the same thing again in about 5 minutes. All. day. long. And E. has gotten A. to do it to Little Squirrel also. And E. has even gotten Little Squirrel to do it to A. Basically, it's a 1st grade "mean girls" scenario with E. pulling the strings. I've been trying to talk to Little Squirrel about ignoring, and role playing how to ignore, and we've dealt with the issue a lot in our weekly counseling sessions. But Little Squirrel just doesn't have the self esteem or social skills to pull that off. Today, with A.'s parents, we compared notes and put all the pieces together and I feel really bad for Little Squirrel. Basically, Little Squirrel and A. were BFFs. They have a very positive, innocent friendship that consists of jumping up and down and running around, both are ADHD (though I don't think A.'s parents are aware of this about A.), hence why A. doesn't notice Little Squirrel's differences. No fighting or bickering--which is notable for Little Squirrel since she has had social problems in this area since she became social at age 4. I was encouraged by this positive friendship and the teacher even commented on what great friends Little Squirrel and A. are and how they are so good for each other. Then along came E. She joined the class in December and set her eyes on friendship with A. She's a manipulative little thing and started telling A. not to be friends with Little Squirrel anymore or she wouldn't be A.'s friend. And she's been pressuring A. to ditch Little Squirrel. It's become like a tug of war between Little Squirrel and E. over A. Little Squirrel just wants her fun, innocent friendship with A. back, but to E. it's psychological warfare. Little Squirrel is completely ill-equip when it comes to social complexities. That's why her friendship with A. worked so well. Little Squirrel has only very surface level social understanding, so she's been just floundering around, trying to keep A. and fight off E., but sometimes that means buddying up to E. to avoid being left out. She is in way over her head and this is only 1st grade. This situation would be difficult even for a NT, but disastrous for a kid with ASD who scored 0% on the social communication part of an evaluation. It's like sending her into battle every day without any weapons, armor or strategy. This is making me rethink the mainstreaming. Her teacher says it's getting in the way of teaching and learning. Little Squirrel is gifted and advanced academically. She doesn't even know how extraordinary she is compared to other kids in her class. She reads fluently, has the handwriting of an adult, is a gifted artist, and has superior math skills. Yet she's trying desperately to be accepted by little girls who are already dressing like teenagers and can't even read the notes she writes to them.

We have a meeting next week to talk to the teacher and counselor about options for next year.

So long, MyAutismTeam.com

I had to get the heck out of there! Actually I'm not out yet. Turns out you can't delete a profile without emailing and asking them to do it. It's even worse than Facebook.

Why am I leaving? Simply because I can't keep their "Remember the golden rule policy" because people are just so damn stupid and annoying. Sorry. No, I'm not sorry. It's just true. I run on empty with patience on a daily basis and the last thing I need is EVERY single post I make to have some dolt idiot pop up making the most obvious "suggestions," when I my post did not even solicit suggestions. I could say, "Gosh I'm so sick of the rain." And some moron would pipe up and say, "Have you tried an umbrella?"

Seriously.

"Have you tried a rice bucket?" [no, I just arrived here from another planet]

"Maybe you should just tell her to just ignore those mean girls." [gee! That sounds so simple. I should have tried that FIRST!]

"Sounds like she needs a confidence boost. Take her to the zoo and let her tell you about the animals." [Again, what was I thinking! Of course, a simple trip to the zoo will cure major depressive disorder.]

"Can you structure your weekend with a schedule and free acitivities?" [Lady, puh-leaze...I am the Master of schedules and structure.]

"Have you tried hiding fruit and veggies in a smoothie? My kids drink kale brussel sprout turnip eggplant smoothies while they get liver and onion enemas -- and they can't even tell!" [okay that's an exaggeration but it's pretty damn close to the crap I've heard]

"There are other pressure vests/shorts for a lot less, only $19-59. I'm not sure why the inflatable ones are so much more..." [Because they are INFLATABLE! They PUMP UP! It involves more complex technology than just neoprene and velcro. That's why it's $350! GAH!]

I. just. can't. take. it. anymore!

MyAutismTeam.com was a great idea at first, but like most everything, people ruined it.