Jump to content


Does anyone have links or book recs on Autism, ASD or Fetal Alcohol Syndrome ?

Recommended Posts

I am really beginning to wonder about dfd 22mths. She seems to be showing some fairly strong signs that something is not right within her.



I am doing some research this week and will call to make an appointment with her peditatrician next mths to have a talk with him. I just want to know what types of behaviors are typical and what to watch for.


I really, really hate to see a diagnosis attached to her that seems to be over used in society right now, but some of her behaviors are over the top for typical toddler behavior.


Thanks, Tap

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Here's a link to an autism checklist:




I hope you don't recognize the behaviors, but if you do you need to get her into therapy ASAP. It makes a huge difference in kids' outcomes. IMHO, autism is rampant, but I've never met a kid with an official diagnosis (as opposed to parents' self-diagnosing) who didn't have major behavioral and communication challenges before receiving therapy.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The book Sam and George definitely comes to mind as well as the latest book by Jenny McCarthy. I learned so much from both of these...both available at your library or on Amazon. You won't regret the time you spend with these books. They taught me so much about autism.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Our youngest came to us at 11 months old with attachment disorder. I knew right away that something was wrong, (stiff as a board when I held him, did not play well with toys or relate to other kids, didn't come to me for comfort when hurt/sad, had trouble solving problems). We used a book called Holding Time to work through his issues.


I also had him tested for FAS when he was 5 at a Ped. Neurologist.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

What exactly are you seeing that is concerning?


Depending on her history, Fetal Alcohol, Attachment, Autistic spectrum disorders, ADHD, or even mental illness might all be options.


My 12dd was showing signs of mental illness when she came to us at not quite 8 months old. She was seeing a psychiatrist before her 2nd birthday, things were that bad.


Did bio mom or dad abuse drugs/alcohol? Any family history of mental illness? Autism?


Is she still having visits with them? Are the behaviors worse for several days after visits?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

First let me say that I know that all these behaviors are typical toddler behaviors. It isn't each behaviour seperately that is concerning it is more of an overall look at her personality. And each behavior is progressively getting worse, not better.


As far as concerning behaviors:


If she has a bm during the night or nap time, she will paint the walls with it. I recently solved this by modifiying her pjs so she can't get in her pants, so it stopped but only by my intervention.


She has days where she throws 10-20 viloent tantrums a day. Laying on the floor kicking, screaming, hitting her fists into the floor, slamming her body around. It seems like it is either a good day or a bad day. We put her in the corner for a minute or two when she has a tantrum, and then if she quiets down and seems to come out of her tantrum, we let her come out. Then she will go immediately back into the tantrum. It is like once she starts a tantrum, she can hit the pause button, and then just pick up where she left off. It is almost like she can't help but finish it. I have just left her on the floor to see what happens if I let the tantrum run its course and she flailed about for an hour. Stopping and starting but never really coming out of it.


She hits, slaps, kicks and now scratches at NO obvious provocation. She is the worst in the morning and afternoon and I or my 9yo dd are the typical targets. She also hits at daycare. I am her primary care giver, and dd and her share space the most often (same bedroom, back seat....) so I think that her level of contact with us is why we get targeted the most. She will look at you, walk across the room and start hitting. The other morning I got her out of bed, she was happy and giggling with me, and then as we walked down the stairs, she started hitting me and scratching my face.



Once she starts something, she MUST finish it. If she is dropping something off her tray like Crayons, and I try to stop or redirect her, she will flail about, move her hands furiously, and do everything to send the crayons flying off the tray. If she is hitting someone and we put her in time out, when she comes out, she goes over and starts hitting the same person again.


She is very, very auditorily stimulated. She loves music and dancing. She is very afraid of loud or rumbling noises like car motors (exhaust sounds from trucks are very scary to her), vacuume cleaners, lawn mowers... She will be in the house, store, or church and cover her mouth, open her eyes wide in fear, and indicate in a certain word/sound she uses to tell us she can hear a noise. It can be a noise so faint you have to strain to hear it, but she hears it and reacts like it is in the room.


Some things that make me think it is unlikely to be Autism: she is verbal, not accelerated but talks and communitcates with gestures/movements. She is quite cuddly (but on her terms) and will definitely make eye contact. In fact she will stare you down if she is not happy. She doesn't like to be/play alone. She wants enormous amounts of contact. To the point of rarely playing with toys. She is very attached to a small doll and puppy, but really doesn't play with other toys often (may 20min total for a day). She

most likes to play with Play Dough, playing the piano or drawing.


She is very attached to us. She has been with us since she was 5mths old, and while in the beginning she did have an adjustment period, she is now firmly attached to all of us. She is very affectionate towards all of us. She is not as affectionate to her bio-parents, daycare employees, or other people.


She is very, very picky about the food she will eat. She is texture specific but also likes/dislikes seemingly random foods. If you give her something she doesn't want, it will put her into a full blown tantrum. It can be a simple as the wrong cereal. She will only eat if she wants what you are giving her. But if you give her something that she really likes, she will eat, and eat and eat. Almost like she has no internal switch telling her to stop. If you try to take away food after she has eaten a good size portion, and she should be very full, and she wants it still...she will go into a tantrum (this has happened when both dh and I fed her without realizing the other had just fed her). Just as a side note: She has a dairy and whey allergy but she loves any thing cheese flavored. I now buy her goats milk cheese, soy or rice yogurt and she loves them. Because of diahhrea and vomiting I wondered about Celiac early on but her GI distress symptoms were resolved with eliminating milk and whey. She is in the 90th plus percentile for height and weight so she definitely doesn't have "failure to thrive".


A new bazaar thing that has started is that she is throwing up at night in her crib or during the day. It is whole foods from 12 hours before but isn't a large volume. She has thrown up 6 times in 4 days with no other 'illness' symptoms. If this doesn't stop, I will take her to the ped this week. Now that I think of it, she does seem to put her fingers in her mouth a lot lately so maybe she is doing this and making herself gag... She doesn't seem to be teething, but more like she is sucking on her fingers. She has only been getting a pacifire at night for 6 mths so maybe it is her way of thumb sucking. I will have to pay more attention on this one.



If anyone has a direction for me to look for ideas please let me know. I would like to have some more information before I go to the doctor. I would like to be able to give good observation of her behaviors to the doc but I don't know what all to watch for.


ETA: She is very, very intelligent. Even her daycare remarks about how incredibly intelligent she is.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I recommend that you x-post your most recent post about what she's doing to the Special Needs boards. Your post is more likely to be seen by more mom's with experience there.


I would also recommend you see a developmental pedatrician, or a DAN! doctor if you suspect aspergers or autism. My experience is that some DAN! doctors are also good for diagnosing other developmental problems (Our dev. ped became a DAN! doctor)


A couple of more suggestions. There may be a sensory component to her problems because of the food texture and sound sensitivity. You might read The Out-of-Sync Child to see if you recognize other sensory problems. People with dairy problems often also have problems with goat products and large amounts of soy milk (3-4 glasses a day) so you may want to eliminate the goat and reduce the soy milk. I used other milk substitutes for my ds, but would get ds soy ice cream and other products not eaten daily.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

... goat products and large amounts of soy milk (3-4 glasses a day) so you may want to eliminate the goat and reduce the soy milk. I used other milk substitutes for my ds, but would get ds soy ice cream and other products not eaten daily.




Ooops, that did sound like that but we actually use rice milk to drink, and she gets soy yogurt 1-2 times a week and an ounce or two of goats milk cheese a week.



I limit it but when she gets it...she loves it.


Thanks for the sensory suggestions.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

had lots of attachment-disorder type behaviors that got MUCH better with a gluten- and casein-free diet.


Look at the foods she adores -- is there a pattern? Is it mainly dairy? Wheat? Carbs? If she craves something, watch how she acts after she has it.


I thought ds just craved carbs. It turns out that he was having an opioid-like reaction to gluten and casein. So, when he ate chicken nuggets, for example, he'd eat the breading off the nugget and balk at eating the chicken.


Over time, I've realized that stress from early life can cause adopted/foster kids to have long-term issues with foods, behaviors and emotions. They react differently to meds, are more sensitive to small changes, and have only two emotional settings: calm, and through-the-roof angry/sad. Before we started doing biomedical treatments, NOTHING stopped my son from a meltdown when he started. We just had to wait it out. Since we started "the diet" and added specific vitamins/supplements, he's a different child.


I'm on a yahoo group for parents who are using gfcf diet and other biomedical treatments that are thought of as ASD treatments -- but we use them on our adopted kids. It's called AdoptBiomed and it's the place I learned about all of the diet stuff, vitamins and supplements. It's ONLY for adopted (or foster) kids. If you'd like to join, email me and I'll send you an invitation.



Link to comment
Share on other sites

I TOTALLY understand. People say, "oh, yeah, that is what 2 year olds do" until they spent 1 hour with my daughter and were EXHAUSTED. The behaviors might be the same but the intensity and the frequency are what push you over the edge.


I agree with the ideas of following up on food allergies, etc. I would also push for a developmental pediatrician ASAP. Some of what you say really fits with pediatric onset bipolar as well.


At this age though it can be really tough to tease out all of the issues and then to complicate things---often these kids have multiple issues so it isn't just one thing.


Print out what you posted and give to your ped. and to the developmental ped. A peds. psychiatrist might also be in order but it is hard to get into them with a child so young---although they will treat them as young as 18 months old in some cases.


If possible, keep a behavioral chart on her daily to see if there are any patterns to this or food triggers, etc. The more information you have, the better.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


  • Create New...