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I sent the below note to my sons psychologist and she said she will address "sensory seeking behavior"... have you had this come up with your children?  I always thought he was just very affectionate but it has been getting more and more lately.

... "DS has a tendency to be really touchy with people around him, not just adults.  Where some kids might have an aversion to contact, DS seems to need it.  It is getting to the point of being inappropriate and other kids don't like it.  Not that he touches anybody inappropriately, just doesn't seem to know when it is ok.  We have been talking to him about using his words instead of his hands.  It's hard though because he just craves the contact."

by on Apr. 4, 2013 at 7:23 PM
Replies (11-19):
by on Apr. 5, 2013 at 12:19 PM

My son does the verbal stim thing when he gets excited too. He does the ticka ticka ticka and also just kind of a yell, almost like the sound an older infant makes when they want something. I guess I always thought it was just his way of expessing his excitement, but I will have to try taking cues from that and calm him down whenever its not an appropriate time to get excited. Still new to Autism, so much to learn!

by on Apr. 5, 2013 at 12:55 PM

Mine is a seeker and avoider too. He seeks touch, bear hugs, deep pressure, and was pretty inappropriate with other kids at times. He isn't mean anything by it either, it was his way of reaching out. Now he tends to flop on the ground more (on the playground(, and his teacher has given him some ideas of things he can do that won't bother other people. 

This was part of what delayed my seeking an autism diagnosis actually, he has always loved hugs. I thought all children with autism avoided hugs. I wish this was listed on general symptom checklists more. 

by Platinum Member on Apr. 5, 2013 at 9:31 PM

 My son is a sensory seeker. That is why they moved him into aqua speech therapy. They feel the water will help him focus more. He is also constantly touching my face with his hands or cheek. He only does this to me and dad.

by Member on Apr. 6, 2013 at 2:05 AM

My 3.5 yr old has all sorts of sensory quirks- as we call them. He used to chew everything!! And by everything I mean my house looks like I own beavers! Now, after 2 yrs, we found 1 thing he will chew on-straws!!!!! He licks everything! I don't think my windows will ever be clean again! He loves the deep pressure. He will pull on our hand and lead us to the couch, lay on his stomach and we know what to do. He is S L O W L Y growing out of slapping everything. Wall, door, window, t.v., table, clapping til we thought his hands would bleed! Straws and his trampoline are excellent with helping to reduce some of his quirks.

by on Apr. 6, 2013 at 5:30 AM
My son loves to touch boobies. And he asks about them all the time. He will walk up to a random stranger and say: May I touch your boobies!!! Good Lord! But that may be puberty?? Maybe not, though.
by on Apr. 6, 2013 at 9:34 AM

My 3 year old is a sensory seeker....she likes to be touched..throughout the day she'll come and want to snuggle or she'll lay on my bed and push against me....the pressure helps her.

by Cathleen on Apr. 18, 2013 at 7:07 PM

We are dealing with that at the moment. DS is 6 and likes to touch other people's hair. His own, mine, his get the idea! lol. We have told him he needs to ask if he can touch someone's hair. We are trying to get him to understand "personal space". It's a tough one, but we are using visual aids and social stories. 

We are also trying to get him to understand if someone does not want to be touched, they will say no, and he needs to respect that. 

It's hard for him, but he's trying!

by on Apr. 18, 2013 at 8:13 PM

Set limits, expectations, and Routinely reiterate what is appropriate. But also understand that this is a Need and that your guy is going to need you, family, and maybe someone at school to allow him to display affection; hugs, hand holding, occasional laptime. Have you tried any compression vests or shirts? This might work as it gives the upper body the 'hugged' feeling. Other ideas would be to try to find alternatives where your son has something he can utilize when he needs to access that feeling but the setting/company isn't appropriate; such as a cuddle item he can hug, pet, cuddle with. I have found that my son really likes the feel of me making a circle motion on the top of his hand; he almost goes limp and just grins from the inside when I do this. He knows that he must ASK for cuddles and wait for consent. We do a lot of hand holding and occasionally back rubs. Hopefully some of these ideas will help you and your guy. 

by Bronze Member on Apr. 18, 2013 at 9:20 PM

My son did this especially with touch elbows.  we discovered he needed the touch it comforted him.  especially when he was non verbal it was his way of communicating and reaching out.  My mom use to kiss his elbow and rub it for some reason and he took it as a sign of love and probably friendship.  We used and ABA who just made us use the phrase no touch when he did it and he had to repeat.  Also she had me do things like letting him brush my hair, hold my face, we also did things like patty cake and daps, or Hi five.  The Hi five allowed for the touch but these these gave him the ability to reach out but he could only do it when the other person reached out first. 

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