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Is my son autistic?

Posted by on Jul. 23, 2014 at 12:44 AM
  • 4 Replies

My 4 yr old son doesn't always answer us lately.

Usually it's at dinner time. Everyone else is eating and I'm asking what he would like to drink. I give him options. He won't answer. But, if I go over to him and ask him right in his face, he will eventually answer me.

He didn't answer his uncle when he was babysitting, and when I returned, the uncle told me he put my ds in time-out for not answering. When in the car, I asked why he didn't answer and he said, "Because I was eating."

We talk throughout dinner, there's no rule to be quiet in our house while eating.

Aside from the meal time situations, there are other times he just won't answer, or will answer after being pestered. Recently we've been in situations where I'm with him, other adults ask him a question point-blank, and he will just walk away.

Other than this, he talks a lot. He likes to tell lengthy made-up stories duing dinner time especially. When he was born and they put him on my tummy, he wasn't crying - he was chattering.  When he was 11 months old, he stunned the nurses in the hospital when my other son was born. He looked at his infant brother and said "What's that?" So, by a year he was speaking in 3 word sentences.

Just recently he's been pacing back and forth when we're home sometimes. When he gets excited he flaps his arms. I've been reading this is a sign of autism, but not always. 4 year olds have a lot of energy.

He just attended vacation Bible school and for the first 2-3 days, his group leader said he "floated along with the group" or on the outside of the group. However, by the 3rd or 4th day, he was answering questions and making comments in 'class'. He told me when we got home that he didn't make any friends, and he was sad about this. Although, I learned that most of the boys his age there had attended preschool together and knew each other already. He has not been to preschool yet but we are looking into this year. VBS was only a week long.

I grew up in a family where we were all shy. My husband isn't shy so much as very quiet with a passive personality. I used to be very shy as a kid. My other two children are shy.

But I became concerned because of the times my son doesn't answer me. So I brought it up with my dh and before I could say anything, he said he was concerned.

This is all fairly recent. My 13 year old dd has been getting mad at him for not answering, and tonight she on her own without being privy to mine and my dh's conversation said, "I think he has autism."

About a month ago, before this, my dh and I had a really loud argument, and I took off for about 15 minutes in my car. We don't fight often at all, usually a big one once every year, and this was it. Unfortunately it happened around the two boys. Could this have caused him some anxiety?

Just tonight he was looking right in my face, telling me that Mars and Jupiter are twin planets, and tha Jupiter doesn't have any land on it. I don't know how he knows this. I googled twin planets because I'd heard the phrase but there are planets called twins, but they're venus and earth. Still, he said the twin planets were green and blue; venus is considered green, earth blue.

There really isn't anything else except he isn't interested in writing his name, but some children aren't until they're even 6 years old. Otherwise, he's actually really smart and converses well.

In his 2 and 3 year old check-ups, the pediatrician give me a form with an autism check-list and told me "I can see he doesn't need this...but I give this to everyone." He was playing with his brother and talking to the doctor, chattering away.

I worry now has he changed? We stopped vaccinating the children after the boys had reactions, and this one was 18 mos or younger for his last. He seemed fine until now.

Or, is this just a phase? Or something some 4 year olds do? A personality querk? Just regular shyness? Anxiety?

Sometimes I think he's just really really smart. I wish, I hope that's all it is.

I'm really stressed about this. I'm taking him for a blood test tomorrow ordered by my naturopath to test for allergies related to his asthma (not severe). My next step is to either talk to the pedi  or the naturopath or both, about getting him screened.

Please, somebody tell me this doesn't look like autism.

And if it does, I have a question...does this progressively get worse, and how much worse?

I'm sick to my stomach, it's in knots, and I need to hear from someone because I certainly can't sleep.


by on Jul. 23, 2014 at 12:44 AM
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by Silver Member on Jul. 23, 2014 at 1:52 AM

The flapping is what jumps out of me as it is like the #1 symptom of it though if anything he is high functioning because he does eventually respond when asked a question.  I would have his hearing tested first though.  there is no cure for autism so I dont think the naturopath would be much help.  Sometimes pediatricians miss things (mine did), so maybe a neurologist if the hearing test yields no indications of a hearing issue.  There are issues with regression but not always.

by Silver Member on Jul. 23, 2014 at 7:10 AM
I'd make an appointment with a developmental pediatrician for an evaluation. It will put your fears to rest or get supportive interventions if that's what's needed.
Your son sounds like he may have SPD- a sensory processing issue or perhaps an auditory processing disorder. He doesn't sound as if his symptoms of autism are severe and there are tons of successful high functioning mildly autistic people running around out there-- so really, you should have no worries even if he is.
There is no blood test or other "defining" (MRI) tests that "diagnose" autism. Meet with a developmental pediatrician or a neurologist or neuropsychologist for the answers you need
by on Jul. 23, 2014 at 8:10 AM

I was concerned with my son about the possibility of having autism for the longest time.  I could not get a doctor to listen to me.  When he went to Kindergarten, I talked to his teacher about the possibility of autism.  She in turn talked to the school counselor.  The counselor asked her if my son will look at the teacher in hte face when she is talking to her.  My son will do that for a couple of seconds and then look away.  

When he gets nervous he will blink his eyes constantly.  He did not start talking until he was 4.5 years old and he was not potty trained until he was 4 years old.

He is now an active healthy 7 yr old.  He no longer shows signs of autism.

My sugestion to you is talk to a child phcharist (sp).  There are many varients of autism on the ASD.  Hopefully you can get more answers than I did.

by Bronze Member on Jul. 23, 2014 at 9:56 AM

 I don't have a lot of experience with this. Have you checked out the autism group here at Cafemom?



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