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

Flapping - how do you stop it?

Posted by on Apr. 27, 2014 at 3:56 PM
  • 26 Replies

My 7 year old flaps when he gets excited.  Shouldn't I stop this before some kid makes fun of him?   Meaning, should I encourage him to do something else, instead of flap?   What do your OTs and docs say about this?


Thanks.

by on Apr. 27, 2014 at 3:56 PM
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Replies (1-10):
emarin77
by Silver Member on Apr. 27, 2014 at 4:12 PM
1 mom liked this

If it is hurting him I definitly would teach him to do something else.  You could teach him to clap his hands twice for example.

AnnaNonamus
by Member on Apr. 27, 2014 at 4:13 PM
1 mom liked this

I give gentle reminders to my daughter if her stimming gets out of control (she doesn't flap, she rocks), but it's a way for them to self soothe.  It's a natural action for children with Autism.

lady-J-Rock
by Bronze Member on Apr. 27, 2014 at 4:17 PM
1 mom liked this
I don't stop him it seems to make things worse.
JoshRachelsMAMA
by JRM on Apr. 27, 2014 at 4:27 PM
4 moms liked this

It's a natural way of letting you know there's an issue. I'd leave him be and f$ck whomever wants to make fun of him..

SamMom912
by Gold Member on Apr. 27, 2014 at 4:51 PM
1 mom liked this

Id talk to him about how e flaps when he is excited. How it isnt completely socially acceptable.. ask him how he might handle someone not being nice to him based on this action. Ask him if he thinks there is something else he could do to replace the flapping that maybe more socially appropriate. Id also be patient while he learns this, as I am guessing this is completely involuntary- and he will need some reminders
I think a fun way to do this may be suggesting he practice this.. one day go buy him 5 toys... (dollar store- ?) but things you think he will like- building up to something he loves... and have him open them 1 at a time over an hour +.. call him back every 15 minutes... to open another toy and see the reaction, see the excited flapping-- redirect to suggested action.. and then at the end-- Id give him something freakin awesome... and see if he can "hold" the flap... and use the new action.
Again, i just think it would be fun to practice with the positive reinforcement... but it may not work.. he may NOT care enough to change.. and it may not be a big deal. IF these are his freinds, they need to be ok with him flapping when happy... I have an NT GF who is a flapper when she is all happy/ emotional. There is NOTHING ASD about her... but when she saw her kids walk (I saw the video of Jack walking to her-- hubby was taking video) she was all flappy and happy tears on her face... LOL..I didnt think ASD.. I thought happy emotional.. and the smile on her face as well as baby Jack) was the real attention getter.. not the flap!.:)  

Momof4AEMW
by Gold Member on Apr. 27, 2014 at 4:52 PM
1 mom liked this

My son does not flap but has other stims.  As long as he is not hurting himself or others, I just let it go.  I could care less what others think anymore, and it makes him happy. 

smarieljlee
by Sara on Apr. 27, 2014 at 5:01 PM

No I would not.

Simran81
by Bronze Member on Apr. 27, 2014 at 6:16 PM

Maybe redirect to squeezing hands together.

jowen905
by Jan on Apr. 27, 2014 at 7:36 PM

 You could try redirecting him to something else.  Call the flapping to his attention, with gentle reminders and try the redirecting - maybe to squeezing his hands together, twisting a bracelet, opening and closing his hands into fists.  It may or may not work.........my son used to twist the bottom of his shirts around his index fingers and eventually he'd have the shirt wound up to his chest, with bare belly showing.  He now "plays" with his fingers instead.  But he needs to do something to soothe himself and at home he loves to repeatedly throw stuffed animals through the house and twirls in a circle occasionally.  He's old enough to self-regulate himself, and I know he holds it together all day at school, so at home we are pro-stimming!

darbyakeep45
by Darby on Apr. 27, 2014 at 8:04 PM
2 moms liked this

I agree here.  I could care in the least if my son flaps...he does it ALL the time.  He's not hurting himself or others so why should I care?  

Quoting Momof4AEMW:

My son does not flap but has other stims.  As long as he is not hurting himself or others, I just let it go.  I could care less what others think anymore, and it makes him happy. 


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