I am a pagan mom.
I am a pagan mom with Asperger’s Syndrome.
I am a Pagan Mom with Asperger’s Syndrome who has a child with Asperger’s Syndrome.
I have an 8 year old boy who has struggled with any organized “anything” in a group setting since he was 2. I did not think much of it, then, as you know they all talk about the terrible twos. Yeah, he does not like other kids, neither did I. So what?
Further down the road, I would hear he does not play with other children, and my response was: “Well, perhaps he feels the other children are beneath him?” Now, I know that this sounded a bit snooty, and coming from an American woman in the UK, I had the double whammy going. But what I meant was: Don’t you think that he may feel his peers cannot “get” what he is doing and he prefers to play alone? Of course, as a woman with Asperger’s I have very little filter between my brain and my mouth. Yes, now and then, it WILL kick in. But there are times, biting my tongue simply hurts.
After Xan and I moved back to the US, about a year later, he began Kindergarten. Things did not go well for him. He butted heads with his teach, I butted heads with his teacher (whom I suspect lost her joy for teaching a while back, and she showed it) and I had him put into another class in the middle of the year.
In first grade, he still struggled. While he is very intelligent, has a great knack for speaking to adults like a 40 year old midget, he had trouble focusing.
I had him enrolled in a martial arts before and after school program, but it did not seem to work for him. The Martial Arts are great for teaching discipline, but this particular one, I cannot say a good thing about. They ignore bullying, the adults are bullies, and I would NEVER recommend them to another parent in the Eastern Shore Area. If anyone moves here: Avoid Mitchell’s Martial Arts. I had Xan in there for 3 years. It got worse as the years went on.
When Xan was at the end of his 1st grade year, his doctor diagnosed him with ADHD. I also fought to get him special education concessions, and he now has an IEP. I had been trying to go by a natural means of treating him. By the beginning of 2nd grade, Xan was on a stimulant for ADHD. It worked for a while. When he grew, it stopped working, and the Doctor decided to try a different medication. This one after 10 hours, gave him a frightening Tic, and made him manic. I took him off of these meds immediately.
About a week later, I was let go from my position at work. While they say the position was eliminated, I believe it was due to my having to leave suddenly to care for my child. While I was covered under FMLA, they could not fire me. So they came up with a creative solution. Position Elimination.
Back to the subject of meds… As Xan was having a terrible reaction to the stimulant meds, his Doctor made a referral to see a neurologist. We had to wait 2 months for this visit.
Within 10 minutes of seeing Xan, the neurologist proclaimed: “He doesn’t have ADHD as much as he has Asperger’s Syndrome.” I asked him a few questions, and he said to me “The apple does not fall far from the tree, you have it too.”
Wow, just wow. But having done a tin of research on the subject, a LOT of things make sense about the way I was and still am, AND the way Xan is about certain things.
I cannot stress enough how important it is for parents, and aspies, as well as other people with conditions that are not NT (Neuro-Typical) seek a support group. It is really helpful to become an advocate for your child, as well as yourself.
While I am fortunate that both my son and myself are high functioning Aspies, I have to view it as a gift.