Sorry for the long hiatus! As you know, 2020 happened and that basically meant that everything has changed. I’ve started dabbling into the world of homeschooling as my 3 year old autistic son no longer attended pre-school. I thought I’d share some information on the types of homeschool syllabus I found suitable for pre-schoolers with autism.
Tagged: Autism Malaysia
Most parents were clueless on autism red flags until someone pointed it out. I wish I knew more people who talked about autism when our son was little so I could pin point his red flags to autism instead of assuming that he’s just a “difficult baby”, “problematic child” etc.. In the end, autism is a spectrum disorder so just because your child does or does not have the symptoms stated above doesn’t mean he or she is or isn’t autistic. Trust your motherly instinct and gut feel, do your own research and consult with your paed if you notice any red flags.
His autism and sensory disorder means his brain processes certain sensory input differently from ours. It is like he has spidey senses. Here’s how his brain works in terms of sensory processing”. This means that he takes in every sound and visual that there is to take in. He does not filter out white noise like we do, he hears them all. He hears all 3 Azan prayers from the suraus nearby, he hears the aircond, the dishes being washed, the fan whirring, the buzzing in the kitchen light, the cars on the streets.
The waiters were all very amused with him, one tried to engage him few times but he gave no eye contact or respond. The other customers were probably annoyed and judging me. He was SO noisy. But I just couldn’t do anything. I know they probably think he deserves scolding or spanking. But to us he’s doing so well just self entertaining instead of having a tantrum and anxiety. I wish they understand but they don’t. I don’t blame them. Me last year would probably judge myself too.
In therapy centres, in his school, on social media and YouTube videos. William is definitely one of the more hyperactive ones. It is very common for autistic children to be diagnosed as ADHD as well (go follow @adamsautismfamily). Further, William’s score was borderline ADHD based on a questionnaire the doc asked me to do. He was not too worried as he said his attention span is not too bad. Usually ADHD is diagnosed at a later age (ie: above 5 yo cos that’s when the symptoms are clearer). So at his age now it’s still a questionmark.
Is he being stubborn or is it his autism? That is one question that had been bugging us for a while. Sometimes we tend to forget that he also have a personality that he’s born with just like everyone else. For instance he’s super affectionate, probably something he inherited from mommy’s DNA haha. But he is also super defiant. We’ve always known but I guess I wasn’t sure about it once his autism diagnosis came in because autism is such a wide spectrum.
Besides just dealing with an autistic child with sensory disorder and global developmental delay (and possibly ADHD in future), we have to also deal with the normal aspects of the child. Yes, sometimes we tend to forget that he also have a personality that he’s born with just like everyone else. For instance he’s super affectionate, probably something he inherited from mommy’s DNA haha. But he is also super defiant. We’ve always known but I guess I wasn’t sure about it once his autism diagnosis came in because autism is such a wide spectrum.
Every time I tell someone about my son, one of the most common things I hear is that autistic people have special abilities/gifts. In reality, this savantism trait really occurs to only 10% of autistic diagnoses. Autism is a spectrum disorder. Most likely these people have Aspergers Syndrome (which is now considered a mild for of autism). Individuals with Aspergers can be verbal and academic with no obvious learning disabilities but they still show some autism characteristics like being really antisocial, sensory issues.
Almost all well-meaning people around us; friends, colleagues, neighbours, and even family members alike, had doubted our son’s autism diagnosis at one point in time. We know people have our best interest at heart and meant well, and we still love them; it just goes to show how severely awareness on autism is within our society. In spirit of spreading awareness, I would like to share 4 common comments that we had received that were less thoughtful.
Medical professionals usually would only diagnose a child with autism at 2-3 years old as the symptoms tend to be clearer then. The earliest you can usually detect is at 18 months old BUT after I did my research of other families with autism and my observation of my own son, I have put together a list of symptoms that could mean your baby has autism features even before 1 year old. Knowing the symptoms early on would be beneficial as the earlier the intervention, the better.