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Autism - Support Across the Spectrum Autism - Support Across the Spectrum

I have a Question or should I say my husband does? update in red on pg 34

Posted by on Aug. 27, 2012 at 9:19 AM
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The below describes what my best friend does with her Autistic son. The question is should we report it?

I have witnessed our friend hitting her son who suffers from Asperger's with a plastic spatula whenever he 'lashes' out (i.e. Hitting his sister, hitting her, etc) also when he has a major meltdown (crying/screaming) she will shove him on to the couch (which doubles as his bed) and hold a pillow over his head until he stops his it. She also refuses to let him go outside or anywhere other than school, her husband (whom she has separated from) has got her so scared that DCF will get called if he goes outside and starts screaming. She does not provide any toys for him to play with, he ends up playing with the cat's toy or making paper spinners (tearing up paper and wrapping string around it). She allows him to take several baths a day, he uses the bath to have BM's, she allows him to do this, he was fully potty trained up until last school year (around Jan or Feb) something has happened to him at the school that has scared him of the toilet, and She blames his father for this, even though his father would not put up with him pottying in his pants, he (the father) would not yell at him but simply make him use the bathroom.  This boy is almost 12 years old and is non-verbal, he is enrolled in public school and from what I can tell in a basic special ed class. He receives SSI and she uses the money on her needs (rent, phone, etc) she does not provide him with anything that might help him progress. Our biggest concern is that the boy is taller than her and stronger and very aggressive towards anyone, and he is going to end up hurting his 8 year old sister (who is the size of a 5 year old) he is already lashing out his sister whenever she is in the living room (his bedroom) regardless of what she is doing. The mother simply excuses this behavior and relocates her daughter to another room. Also worth noting is that the boys diet consists of mainly pastas pizza, hot dogs, etc. She refuses to try a Gluten free diet on him; she stated that he became sick when she tried it before. He is taking risperidone and melatonin.

Should we report her to DCF? She has been investigated before but nothing came of it. She also been told about Cafe Mom, but thinks it is a joke :( I know that this is not any of my business, but I am really concerned and need to know what I should do, please do not bash me for asking.


by on Aug. 27, 2012 at 9:19 AM
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Replies (1-10):
Sheriff6
by on Aug. 27, 2012 at 9:29 AM
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It is my opinion if a child is being abuse you have a moral obligation to report it.
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Momma2JandK
by on Aug. 27, 2012 at 9:29 AM
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Putting the pillow over his head is definitely out of line, I'd venture to say so is the spatula but some social workers would find that if there are no marks left then there's nothing that they can do.  They won't do anything about the diet, the child is fed it is minimal standards.  Relocating her daughter to another room is probably the best for everyone since the 12 year old is so aggressive.  It is easier to move the non aggressor than the aggressor.   I'd report it so they keep an eye on the family.  It sounds like there is alot of stressors that perhaps DCF may help with through family preservation services.  It is not our place to make a final decision on if it is reportable, that is left to the investigators.  They can only do that if we let them know there are concerns.

Mewlan
by on Aug. 27, 2012 at 9:34 AM
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I can't imagine how terrible this is for a boy who is struggling with puberty, Autism Spectrum Disorder and middle school and his parents have separated and cannot even talk.  Sounds like the mom is overwhelmed also--as well as the father who evidently left.  A lot of things she is doing are desperation things sometimes and other times it seems like she is just too tired and is trying to survive autisms destruction of her son and family.  The fact that he has become incontinent when he was potty trained before is bad.  I truly wish this family could get some real help.  I'm not sure how that can be done.

What is going on is not a simple fix.    She has to fix the problem that has made him once again incontinent.  She needs help from a physically strong person at home.  Her son needs interventions that will give him a real life.  His bedroom is in the living room?  He has no place to get away from people at all?  His living situation putting his anxiety over the top (rightfully so) and he has no more resources to cope.  The mom and dad have no more resouces to cope either.

I'm not sure if DCFS are the people to help.  Would she be open to getting some help  I believe that he is severe enough that she could get the school district to pay for a residential education placement.  I can't imagine that he is progressing in his education program at all.  If she can look around and find a program in her area that she thinks might work for her son, maybe that is what the family needs...her son could get 24/7 rested help and they could get some respite.

JJsMami511
by Member on Aug. 27, 2012 at 9:35 AM
13 moms liked this
I'm so sorry you have to go through this and making a decision like this is never easy (being your friendship is on the line here) but the reality is this child needs more help and support than his mother is providing him right now and I would say some intervention is definitely in order..speaking as a person who has worked in social services for 15 years this would be an issue I would definitely report... And the truth is sometimes instead of taking the children away from the home Dept of Children Services would make other measures ( getting intervention for mom and child, getting him and her counseling, etc) removal of the home is always the last resort... The best of luck to you again I know this is a very tough decision but you have to follow your gut and do what you feel best for the child
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Mewlan
by on Aug. 27, 2012 at 9:57 AM
37 moms liked this

And I wonder if she is going to the right doctors?  Aspergers dx criteria is no delay in language.  This boy is nonverbal...he has pretty profound autism--not Aspergers.

lasombrs
by Sara on Aug. 27, 2012 at 10:06 AM
1 mom liked this

you can call social security and report the spending. They make you provide reciepts to show how you are spending the money on your child. I am in the process fo applying and was told to expect to provide documents every few years.

I move my daughter out of ds path a lot. Its easier. And she could get hurt while trying to get through to him that what he is doing is wrong. I can kinda see the outside thing, if she does not think she can handle both kids at once outside. It could be a safety matter and isn't to terrible in my mind. The potty in the tub while gross may be all the can get out of him at the time. I think it should be worked on, but not super terrible either. Better then him sitting in a mess in his clothes all day.

My trouble is the hitting him and putting pillows over his head. It couldn't hurt to report it.

I also agree he is probably more then high functioning and needs additional medical help. But that may also not be her fault. My son has quite a few doctors and not all of them are very attentive and helpful. She could just have a bad dr that is all she can afford with the insurance she has and the only doctors that accepts it in the area :/

JTMOM422
by Brenda on Aug. 27, 2012 at 10:09 AM
5 moms liked this

My question is if she is doing that stuff when you are there what is she doing when you aren't. I would call someone. It's better that she gets the proper help that she needs not only for him but for her and her daughter

shashta102
by Member on Aug. 27, 2012 at 10:12 AM

The mother left the father. I have showed her a school for Autisim and she flat refuses to look into it, she is convinced that the public school is fine for him. She totally refuses to allow him outside the home (regardless for help, etc) she has convinced herself that he does not need any help. He had some OT and PT when he was in pre-school, but she refuses to continue it, he has been doing pre-k to k school work since kindergardten. She will not accept any help "He's fine" I have offered her help as well as previous DCF workers and the DR, she will not listen to anyone but herself. I can not understand why the school, or DR do not offer her any help (to the best of my knowlegdge)

aidensmomma508
by Wendy on Aug. 27, 2012 at 10:13 AM
3 moms liked this

I would report it and they can see what they think

shashta102
by Member on Aug. 27, 2012 at 10:14 AM

What should I say to DCF when/if I report this? Please help me out here, I am affraid to say the wrong thing to them.

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