I have tried to write this post over and over. It is not that I have nothing to say it is possibly that I have too much! (which is nothing new really!)
Dinky has real trouble with expressing her emotions (also understanding them) and expressing herself properly verbally.
I am forever trying to get an understanding of Dinky.
Dinky is very prone to over reacting over simple things. I am much better at understanding this now. I never used to be. I used to shout at her for being awkward, but since January I have become more understanding, not perfect, but I’m trying. It is the same in reverse, things that should make her really upset… don’t.
Example, Dinky kicked off and had a meltdown over not having a monkey spoon for her breakfast as she used them both for yogurts after dinner yesterday.
When she says she hasn’t seen her grandma in ages, it is purely factual and she goes back to what she was doing.
One of the harder things to work out is how to respond to her when she doesn’t understand her own emotions? I had a proud mummy moment a few days ago and I couldn’t help it, the tears rolled down my cheeks. I wasn’t sad, I was happy, and dinky couldn’t understand how she made me sad. So I tried to explain that I was proud and I love her so much that tears came out.
Today Dinky had tears falling down and she looked sad, I asked her what was the matter and at first she said that she was fine and her eyes were just wet. She couldn’t look at me and didn’t know what to do with herself so she flapped her hands and took some breaths. Once I held her tight and she seemed better I asked what was wrong. Her reply was “yesterday (she doesn’t know the days of the week or understand how many days pass), you said you love me… it is that. I love you”. As much as that is lovely, she genuinely seemed upset and neither of us could work out why. One of the most baffling things I have come across so far. It s something I know nothing about or how to help her. To be honest I am not good at emotions, I spent my whole life trying to ignore them, so I am probably the worst person to try and help her.
Expressive language problems, probably one of the harder things to get people to acknowledge when it comes to Dinky.
I like this poster I found it on Facebook on the ‘Autism discussion page’.
Just because Dinky can talk.. (usually too much, too fast and too often!), doesn’t mean that she is effectively expressing herself! Her speech and language report says her language profile is indicative of a specific expressive language impairment. A case of Quality not quantity! I continuously get annoyed by those who are taken aback with the news that dinky is behind in this area, more so that she is roughly 2 years behind! Even more worrying for me is that this is only in the last 12-18 months that she has really dramatically improved.
Yes I have had the SENCO, the teachers, the head, the integrated services lady and the paediatrician ask “really?” when I say that they need to look further than the fact that she can and does talk.
Then again I think they take her too much at surface value.
When I mention ASD to anyone their instinct is “but she is sociable and talks a lot”. Yes she goes up to people and talks at them. I wouldn’t consider that to be an indicator that she doesn’t have communication difficulties.
I just wish people would see under the water and stop watching the fact she seems to glide smoothly on the surface.. this time it is Dinky the duck!