Most people are completely devastated when their children are diagnosed, or in disbelief, they go through the motions of why her/him, why us. Why can't my child be normal, but I had fought since she was one for a diagnosis of autism. I had already come to terms with it. Already prepared myself for the future, i understood that I was never going to get those "firsts" that other families have, well not at the right time anyhow. I'd grieved for her "normalness" way before she was diagnosed so when she was, I cried with relief not loss, finally these "professionals" could see what I saw!
You see it's so much harder to "see" autism in girls,
Mainly because they are social, but let me tell you it's all a mask, she copies and mimicks and creates a model for herself from others to get by socially and in turn that masks her symptoms of autism. Let's face it, who here hears the word autism and automatically thinks of the child that hums in the corner under a chair whilst banging their head, or thinks of the genius child who can name every dinosaur possible, or divide 862/364 within three seconds?
That's why it's more difficult for girls to obtain a diagnosis, they get left under the radar. The statistics of males diagnosed with autism are 1:4 and for females it's 1:19 so that's significantly lower. In fact research suggests that the ratio could be equal if there were more research and training on girls and autism.
Still now Polly hasn't quite grasped the correct social behaviours that should be used. One minute she could playing really nicely and the next bang, she's snatched a toy and ran away, or she's bitten someone on the arm, or she's bashed them over the head with it. Naughty? Bad behaviour? Or something different? For those people who have open minds, they will see that she was playing nicely for a while, she was coping. Masking her symptoms and interacting nicely, it all becomes to much for her, she is exhausted of "pretending" to be someone she isn't and so she lashes out. I'm not in any way excusing this behaviour. It's wrong and she's taught that it's wrong, but for Her consequences do not mean anything.She isn't in our world she has her own world, she doesn't have anything of importance to take away to teach her a lesson. And in any case if we did do this, her behaviour the next day in the same situation would be the same. Because it's not punishment she needs, it's not rewards for good behaviour (although they do help sometimes)
It's understanding and prevention that's the key. And she's teaching me this ....
She has always been a live wire, never stops, is a whizz around the house and would rather play with my belongings than toys, she is very far behind her years and this has only become more apparent since her little sister "moo ma" has gotten older and started playing, she's teaching polly It's great! Imagine a 3 1/2 year old as a teacher for a 6.5 year old. Mentally they are the same age.
She has communication difficulties relating to her autism, and this also affects the way she plays, she can't communicate with her peers effectively and so everyone gets frustrated, she doesn't understand games, and her Imagination relating to playing games is very limited. However she does use her imagination but in a completely different way, she "pretends" to be a teacher (this is her fave) or which ever other professional comes into her life. She watches them intently, their mannerisms, what they say, how they speak and what they do. And she memorises this and then acts it out all day every day! And children don't want to be bossed about by the "new" teacher or doctor they want to run around playing chase, IT, or football. She can do this but not well, for instance if she was playing chase she would become too rough and end up pushing another child over, the same with IT. She's very heavy handed and likes the feedback the pushing sensation gives her. So we need to teach her that she can get that feedback from another source but not to do it on other people.
It's really hard trying to help her understand these things because of her communication and understanding difficulties. She really struggles. I'm hoping as she gets older that her friends can understand her the way we do and she can get on ok in school And grow up with some real good friends. That's my one wish for My little polly pocket 💗💗