Lots Going On

G was having enough trouble in school that a meeting to develop a Behavior Intervention Plan was called.  This isn’t the first time we’ve been through this so while I was anxious, I wasn’t as stressed as I have been at past meetings.  Overall, I was pleased with the plans they had developed and wanted us to approve.  Most of the interventions are positive, working to encourage acceptable behavior.  There are also consequences for negative behavior that seemed sensible to me.  While I understand G isn’t in complete control of his impulses, I’ve never allowed him to get away with bad behavior and wouldn’t expect the school to do so either.

Another issue is G’s classmates are asking why G gets what they perceive to be special treatment.  For example, G gets to chew gum in class after recess, after lunch or whenever the teacher thinks he needs it as a soothing technique.  There was also an incident where G had an outburst and slapped his hands on the floor in a fit of temper, but pulled himself together shortly after.  Because he didn’t hit anyone else and he didn’t continue to rocket out of control, he wasn’t penalized on the class behavior chart.  Apparently this was seen as an inequity among the other kids.  So a presentation has been planned for a time when G is out of the class to explain G to his peers.  Originially his teacher suggested that I come in and do this presentation – and I panicked.  I came home and read everything I could find and stressed about what I was going to say.  Then this idea evolved to the school psychologist giving the talk and keeping the topic to a general comparison of differences instead of slapping an autism or asperger’s label on G.  Then she’ll move onto similarities and go into what G has to offer a friendship.

I’m much more comfortable with the psychologist’s approach.  And one reason why is that we haven’t disclosed G’s diagnosis to G yet.  I intended to do that soon, but I wanted to wait until he was settled into school first.  I didn’t over the summer because I didn’t wasnt to add to his anxiety about starting school.  And when I realized we needed to really sit down and work this out, I ran into another obstacle – DH.

DH is not at all comfortable ‘outing’ G to his class.  He thinks it will cause the kids to shun him.  And he doesn’t think we should tell G that he has Asperger’s until he’s at least 10 years old because he won’t understand it until them.  I strongly disagree, but I’m only one half of the parenting team.  So I’ve had to re-do my research, making sure my sources were objective and reputable before passing it along to DH. (who doesn’t think the information gained from blog posts is valid – silly man)  I sent a very topic-neutral email to the school psychologist soliciting her professional opinion.  I asked DH to read the books for G I’ve been collecting so he could see the age-appropriateness of what I was planning.

I eventually got him to agree to the presentation to the class.  And I have an agreement on disclosure to G, but not an agreement on the exact timeframe.  Which is ok, because I don’t have a firm idea on the time.  I’m thinking in a couple of weeks, on a Friday so there are a couple days before he returns to school, I’ll slip in the chosen book for the bedtime book.  We’ll see if G clicks to the fact that the character in the story I want to use is a lot like him.  Maybe on Saturday during the day I’ll use another book, but maybe not.  I’m really just planning to introduce the concept and then see how it evolves from there.  I don’t want to make a big deal or make this a “Big Talk,” I’m aiming more for making this part of our families vocabulary so that he can grow up with it.

And you’ll notice I switched from working with and planning with DH to a whole bunch of “I plan to” statements.  I have problems with teamwork and would rather make all the decisions by myself.  Sound familiar?

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Published in: on September 16, 2009 at 8:57 pm  Leave a Comment  

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