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Just looking for support:)

Posted by on Dec. 27, 2012 at 10:12 PM
  • 8 Replies
Hi! I am hoping to connect with other step moms/moms of low spectrum autism kids. I've been married a year since November and have a soon to be 11 year old step son. He is high functioning, but lacks confidence and motivation. He lacks in social skills, and has occasional melt downs. He's very loving and respectful for the most part.
by on Dec. 27, 2012 at 10:12 PM
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Replies (1-8):
by Silver Member on Dec. 27, 2012 at 10:14 PM

welcome , im joy

by on Dec. 27, 2012 at 10:15 PM
Hello I'm Jasmine...what activities do you guys have going on for him?
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by on Dec. 27, 2012 at 10:42 PM
He is involved in some sports, played soccer and will be playing basketball in January as usual. He lacks interest in anything other than video games but he does respond well to our encouragement. My husband is great at pulling him in and he usually will participate in everything we do. The thing that frustrates me is that there are alot of things that I feel he can do for himself but mom and dad don't expect him to put forth any effort. It's very confusing for me!! He and I have a wonderful relationship. I just see more in him than what he portrays. The latest issue is him not wanting to tie his shoes. His 9 year old sister tells me that he taught her how to tie her shoes, yet when I've tried to get him to tie his own shoes he doesn't know how and gets very frustrated when learning. He's had straps in the past, but I got him (with dads consent) a new pair of lace shoes for Xmas. He likes the shoes alot but doesn't want to tie them himself.

My husband enjoys doing things for him, and I can understand. It's just hard for me to see everyone doing things for him when he's so capable (I believe). It looks to me as though he's being enabled and it is SO unattractive! It's hard to know when to step in, if ever! And then HOW??
by Amy on Dec. 31, 2012 at 4:05 PM


by Kari on Dec. 31, 2012 at 4:19 PM
Yes, it is easy to enable a child who has special needs and maybe you came along at just the right time for a little gentle reality check for everyone in the family. NOT to imply that it is your job to do anything in particular but with a little help you may be the fresh perspective that encourages him to do more for himself. I have a high functioning aspergers boy and I find myself having to hold back from doing things for him because I know it is in his best interest to be self reliant. Step mom can't be an easy spot because of course you don't want to step on any toes. Maybe you can just make a relationship with the boy individually and if he is anything like my son with a little extra encouragement you may be able to help him do some things he will be really proud of accomplishing. A very smart mom told me once that along with saying how proud you are of them also ask "aren't you proud of yourself for what you have accomplished?" I had never thought to ask that question and my son has reacted wonderfully to the idea of being proud of himself...good luck and welcome! xo
by Bronze Member on Dec. 31, 2012 at 4:44 PM

Welcome to the group! I have an eight year old aspie son and I feel (and know, actually) that in some areas he can do a lot more than the teachers at his school think.  I have been at odds with them over the past couple years over pushing him to do and be more.  I know that we all have the same goals for him but we approach things so differently.  I believe, perhaps naively, that kids rise to meet expectations to the best of their ability.  There are many things he can do but won't at school because he doesn't want to and the teachers, in order to avoid tantrums (not meltdowns), don't push or expect him to.  Whereas at home those things are the norm and no biggie.  He does them with no problems.

Perhaps you can work with your stepson and really boost his confidence.  I wonder if the different laces in the new shoes are what is throwing him off? Maybe take the time to show him once again how to tie them and have him do it again.  I sometimes have to show my son how to do things he already knows how to do when the circumstances change.  Like tying laces, for example.  If the laces are longer than usual or thicker than he is used to he gets confused and has to try harder.  I will encourage him and help him out and when he has done it, no matter how long it took, I tell him he should be proud of himself for figuring out how to do it.  And he is happy with that.

I suspect your stepson will really enjoy the boost of confidence you can bring to him by expecting more of him.  Challenges can be fun and exciting, and it will be fun for the two of you to see what other things he can do. It could be something as simple as asking if your stepson would like to help you with such and such, not making a big deal out of it.  Just as a matter of course, and you could be teaching him some real life skills like cookling, cleaning, doing laundry, shopping, etc etc.  Just things that you or your husband do on a daily basis.  Of course all things in moderation, but little pushes and nudges can be good.  Best of luck and keep us updated!

by on Jan. 8, 2013 at 6:55 PM

My thoughts on how you can effectively provide some great support.

Personal organization is one of the best tools one can use to build self-confidence. Incorporating self-determination opportunities reinforces personal organization and visa versa. I can't over emphasize the importance of being able to have a schedule that will independently prompt and remind someone to do something and the feelings of control and security that action creates. 

On top of this and looking forward, as young people with cognitive disabilities transition to adulthood, the profundity of this skill reveals itself almost overnight .

If we want to see confidence and control, we must provide the tools that give people the ability to perform that way.  Sincerely look towards personal organization and tools that support that skill.  Let me know if you need some help.

by on Jan. 12, 2013 at 10:59 PM

Thanks to all who have responded to my post:) you've helped in many ways!! Also is anyone familiar with A book by Martha Herbert "The Autism Revolution"? I've started reading it and it really is inspiring!!!

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