Fair is Fair

Part of the reason I’m able to understand my son, to the extent that I do, is that I share many of the same sensitivities.  Pulp in my orange juice makes me gag to the point of throwing up, I’m easily overwhelmed in chaotic situations and sometimes need to retreat into a book or a quiet room to level out.  One way we’re different is that I am very, very, very sensitive to repetitive noises.  I have considered myself fortunate that G’s stimming takes the form of movement rather than being expressed verbally.  I’d like to think I’d be a grown up and learn to deal with it, but I’m not completely sure…

G’s current facination is with coins.  He loves to spread out all the coins from his piggy bank and examine them.  He compares their shapes, the patina and discoloration of older coins, organizes them by age, then reorganizes them by size or value and so on.  He’s content to do this for hours. 

Last night he was trying to get the last coins out of his piggy bank by swirling it around.  For about 20 minutes, even though the tv was on and I was working on something else, all I heard was this: 

Swirl swirl plink plink plink.

Swirl swirl swirl plink plink.

Swirl plink plink plink plink.

It was like a version of water torture for me.  Right before I cracked and became a raving maniac I went to  G and asked him to stop.  I reminded him that I was sensitive to certain noises and just couldn’t handle that sound any more.  He was pretty insistant tha he needed the coin and he had to get it without help from me.  But I was just as firm that he wouldn’t accept help then he had to take a break and try to get the coin again later.  I was able to relate it to his sensitivities and how I respect his needs but need that same respect in return.

I find as he gets older the concept of mutual respect is clicking.  We’re gently shifting away from an ‘everything-for-G-the-moment-G-needs-it’ type attitude and we’re asking him to consider his family members needs from time to time.  He’s still 6 (almost), so even if he were a typical kid this would be hard.  But I have to say, I’m pleased with progress.  He left his coins in a pile on the rug and moved onto another activity.  About an hour later, he asked if I had a long enough break and if he could start sorting his coins again.  He was so sweet about it, I would have dug out earplugs before I said no.  After all, fair is fair.  If he takes a break for me, I need to find a way to accomodate him as well.

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Published in: on July 24, 2009 at 2:32 pm  Comments (3)  

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3 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. Boy do I hear this. Ditto Boy has some compulsion to sing almost under his breath all the time…but not quite. “Doo-doo-doo-doo-dooooo-dooo-dooo-dooo…” and so on for 20 minutes straight in no kind of time, rhyme or reason. And no real song, just doo-doo-doo-doo-dooo…… *shudder* Right under my nerves and then on fire. Bless them. 🙂

  2. Aw, how awesome that he’s starting to grasp the “fair is fair” attitude and empathy. For what it’s worth, annoying, repetitive sounds like that would drive me insane too!

  3. […] on this blog in the past that G and I share similar sensitivities.  And I have some other sensitivities he doesn’t share .  We walked quietly for a moment, then I asked Dh the big question.  “Do you think I might […]


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