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how important is a play group?

Sounds odd, but I had my brother to play w/ until school at age 4 (we are 18 months apart) my younger brother played w/mom until we got back from school (9 &10). My mom insists that being in a daycare @ age 4 was the trigger for his autism where he in one week went from being fluent in his 3rd language & potty trained to bed wetting to diaper use to autistic zombie. The daycare was into spanking & isolation punishment.
Now every time I mention my 18m girl being in a play group, she warns me about this-esp if the other children are delayed or younger- she is making me second guess myself. She is telling me that she sees autistic traits in her. Other than her not speaking much yet (only 25 words) & only being able to understand 2 languages & being obsessive about her teethbrushing I dont see any indication of her being slow or autistic. Is it important for her to be in a playgroup at this age or is it just for me?

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Asked by elizabooks at 3:50 PM on Jan. 15, 2010 in Toddlers (1-2)

Level 15 (1,946 Credits)
Answers (8)
  • we attended a playgroup when my older two were little (thy're 8 and 6) but I don't go to one with my youngest (3).

    I don't see any differences in my girls - but a playgroup and a daycare are two completely different places. a playgroup - mommy's there. a daycare - mommy's not there.

    Answer by hypermamaz at 3:57 PM on Jan. 15, 2010

  • Hmm, I don't know much about autism but If I were your mom, that would scare the crap out of me seeing a change in 1 week of that measure. Did she more than BLAME them? go to clinics? therapists? I don't blame you for being scared, but I have been terrified of autism also, however, being that area is still so grey as to why and who and how it happens, I just do the best i can. Make sure if you do childcare they are a state rated 4 star place, one you can stop in at any time, where you meet the teachers and get daily sheets and get all the basics of what goes on there. MY son goes 3 days for half of the day, started at 16 months where he sounded JUST like your fdaughter. he's only 26 months but he is speaking in sentances as of 19 months with a verbal expolsion, I get all of what I mentioned above, he has an obssessive personality ( but so does his father ) lol!! he loved to brush his teeth 40 times a day, then it was cont'd

    Answer by maxsmom11807 at 4:06 PM on Jan. 15, 2010

  • playing with cars for an hour straight and lining them up, then it was to have his blue blanket, he's always liked fans and lights, so he has some of the "signs " of autism but you know what, SO WHAT? I feed him an 85% organic diet, he gets the least amount of toys made outside of the USA where the toxic toys are coming from, his MMR shot has been delayed, all of what I've read besides having a genetic gene to link autism with.. if it happens, it happens. I know for my son, his daycare center has really blossomed his verbal skills and motor skills. I am sorry to hear what your mother had gone through with her son though, that would be devistating enough for me to not want that to happen to my daughter's child also! Good Luck!

    Answer by maxsmom11807 at 4:09 PM on Jan. 15, 2010

  • Seriously? Come one, seriously? Okay, so here's my thoughts, your mom is a wack job if she thinks that a day care turned your brother autistic, and seriously has a perfectionist streak if you don't think that ONE language is enough so young. I am so glad that you are letting your child engage socially, it will make her a well rounded little girl, otherwise play groups are mostly for the mom's to socialize just as much.

    I am sorry if this is a little harsh, but give the kid a break! She is only 18 months old, 25 words is A-OK, she will develop at HER rate. I would tell your mom to mind her own business, because all she is doing is making YOU worry about nothing. Call your doctor, get a referral...check it all out so you can tell your mom to be quiet. The tooth brushing thing, is common. My 17 month old LOVES to brush his teeth, I help, but then I let him do it too. He loves it.

    Answer by MamaRoberts at 5:01 PM on Jan. 15, 2010

  • I'm not saying she isn't a bit of a perfectionist. We had very strict standards to live up to. All of us learned to read & write before school & being only 3nd generation speaking 3 languages was just so we could converse w/our elders. I lived through it as well. 1 day he was fine-if wetting the bed and the next he was a rag doll. I had to help get him dressed to go see the doctor. The doctors (we went to 5) had no clue what was going on LOOKED UP his symptoms in a medical journal (this was 1986) & came to the autism diagnosis. At the time they said she caused it due to being emotionally detached (they did think this then), later they said it could have been caused by a profound emotional shock to his system- which the day care did to him. I know she just wants to prepare me for the possibility, but it is freaking me out here. We checked for fragileX but that is all they can do.

    Answer by elizabooks at 6:58 PM on Jan. 15, 2010

  • I don't know much about autism, I guess I lean towards if you have a propensity for it, it will develop, but I highly doubt that the day care had ANYTHING to do with it, but that is just me. The language thing is understandable now, so I will hush it on that one, but seriously if your daughter is happy, healthy (as far as you or her DOCTOR can tell) and developmentally on point (which sounds like she is) I would just tell your mom that everything is okay. You need to explain to your mom that while you are appreciative of her concerns that you would never put your daughter in a situation that would harm her. She needs to trust YOU, now. Not the other way around. It's hard, but some grandma's don't know when to mothering stops and where grand-mothering starts. Stand your ground mama, tell her that she is freaking you out and that you will take any concerns that YOU have to her doctor.

    Answer by MamaRoberts at 7:37 PM on Jan. 15, 2010

  • There is absolutely no way that being in daycare for 1 week caused your brother's autism. (Your brother's case is also very extreme.) However, it is true that originally some felt that it was caused by mothers who were emotionally distant. They now know this is absolutely untrue. My nephew is autistic and he never went to daycare. By all means, join the playgroup. It's good for your child to be around other kids and you'll get to meet other moms. Now, on the flip side, there is some suspicion that autism may run in families. Thus, you'll want to keep an eye on your daughter. 25 words is very typical for an 18 month old and the whole multiple language thing is definitely not a reason to be concerned. I can simpathize with your mom's experience and fears but they are extreme. Don't make yourself nuts worrying about it.

    Answer by momofryan07 at 7:49 PM on Jan. 15, 2010

  • Honestly, they are more important for moms. It is so good to be around adults and have friends who have kids the same age as yours.

    Answer by rkoloms at 8:12 PM on Jan. 15, 2010

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