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Life my Asperger's teen can be so disorienting


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I'm just reaching out here.  My 17 yo is always throwing me for a loop.  He's smart, witty, insightful and philosophical, except when he's suddenly a 12 yo emotionally, hyperfocusing on some jag he's suddenly absorbed in and incapable of doing the most basic commons sense thing without step by step instruction.  Sigh.  Sometimes it gets so bizarre.   

 

 

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Interesting. My 17 yo has appointments for testing the end of next month with ASD being the most suspected diagnosis (but who knows?). I think I'd be just a little bit happy if he did disorient me a bit once in awhile. He's so quiet, composed and self contained it's almost eerie sometimes. But probably I should be careful what I wish for. ;)

Edited by Pawz4me
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I have a 19 yo ASD kiddo and I never know if it is Jekyll or Hyde I'm going to be dealing with moment to moment. He is smart, funny and capable one minute. The next he is irrational, impractical, angry and dependent.

 

His first year of college brought tremendous growth and tremendous struggles. Through high school I was never sure he'd be ready to go to college, not because of academics, but everything else. Now I wonder if he'll be ready to move on with life after college. We just keep baby-stepping along. 

 

I don't know that it is harder now than it always has been with this guy. It is hard sometimes and easy sometimes. It has always come in waves with him.

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I have a 19 yo ASD kiddo and I never know if it is Jekyll or Hyde I'm going to be dealing with moment to moment. He is smart, funny and capable one minute. The next he is irrational, impractical, angry and dependent.

 

His first year of college brought tremendous growth and tremendous struggles. Through high school I was never sure he'd be ready to go to college, not because of academics, but everything else. Now I wonder if he'll be ready to move on with life after college. We just keep baby-stepping along. 

 

I don't know that it is harder now than it always has been with this guy. It is hard sometimes and easy sometimes. It has always come in waves with him.

 

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Edited by Erica H
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Thanks all for being comrades in arms.  I am always still going through these weird cycles.  When he's especially funny, brilliant, clever, I'll think oh things are looking up and then when he goes into his truculent, 12 yo old, helpless mode, I am always a little bit gobsmacked.  He's had it rough the last few weeks for lots of little reasons. He's had two anxiety attacks so we just upped his medicine for that.  He's actually going to World Youth Day in a month.  This may be a terrible idea.  If he was going with a youth group, we'll that would be awful, but he's going with his adored older brother, who can handle him plus some of his older brother's friends who also seem to 'get' him.  I am hoping that though it will be taxing on him, it will also help him get that independence he is craving too.  To go off on an adventure without mom or dad.  

 

Anyway, thanks.

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Do you know of any online support groups for parents of Aspies?  There are times when I could really use some support or answers, but don't know what to do.  

 

Me too.  I am often overwhelmed lately.  

 

I think there is a group here actually, a private sub-group.  I'd love to talk to any of you though; facebook private group, here, another, anything.  

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Me too.  I am often overwhelmed lately.  

 

I think there is a group here actually, a private sub-group.  I'd love to talk to any of you though; facebook private group, here, another, anything.  

 

I would like that, too!

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Someone can start a new group here and make it private. The problem with that (as I understand it) is that since no one can see it once everyone who is initially interested joins you have to either bump the topic for new people to know the group exists or someone has to think to tell them or send them an invitation to join.

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I know there are still Yahoo groups but I'm not familiar with how to set one up.  I'd love for it to be for the parents.  I wouldn't mind starting a private one here and we could bump the topic like Pawz mentioned.  What does everyone think on that?

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I know there are still Yahoo groups but I'm not familiar with how to set one up.  I'd love for it to be for the parents.  I wouldn't mind starting a private one here and we could bump the topic like Pawz mentioned.  What does everyone think on that?

 

 

I would love that!  Thank you!  

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I am pretty sure there is a private social group. If you ask on the SN forum, someone might be able to answer.

 

The ages between 12-23 were the worst for our Ds. He is much calmer and emotionally in control these days. But, he still does not function like a typical adult. He is truly disabled by his issues. We are proud that he is living in his own apt, waking himself up to go to work, works full-time as an unskilled laborer, and fixes his own meals. (We pay all of his bills (with his $$.) Buy his groceries. Basically, we have to enable him to function.)

 

This is a young man who was a strong student and has a very high IQ. He just can't keep all of the adult balls in the air at the same time.

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I can relate - my son is all over the place, definitely a Jekyll and Hyde. We were in Texas for work, and we had him in the office with us with people he was unfamiliar with, and he just blew us away with the work he did and how well he communicated with the employees there. As soon as we got home it was just about impossible for him to get any work done. And the mood swings this past year are driving me crazy!! He is 17, and so many parents of Aspies tell me that 19 is the magic age of maturity. I'll have to see it to believe it, lol. There is a private group here already for parents of teen aspies. I'm not sure how to invite people, but I'll check it out later after my company leaves. If anyone started a new group I'd love to be a member. :001_smile:

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The ages between 12-23 were the worst for our Ds. He is much calmer and emotionally in control these days. But, he still does not function like a typical adult. He is truly disabled by his issues. We are proud that he is living in his own apt, waking himself up to go to work, works full-time as an unskilled laborer, and fixes his own meals. (We pay all of his bills (with his $$.) Buy his groceries. Basically, we have to enable him to function.)

 

This is a young man who was a strong student and has a very high IQ. He just can't keep all of the adult balls in the air at the same time.

 

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Edited by Erica H
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My son will be 22 in August. In some ways he's improved with age and, in others, he's gotten worse. He has fewer meltdowns, but has gotten more rigid. He can't see anyone else's perspective and always has to blame someone for things. Everything is so black and white with him, and he can be so unreasonable.

These are many of the same issues we face. Our Ds also suffers from extreme anxiety. He is not a good contender for a professional type jobs bc bc he cannot fill in the details that are necessary for those types of jobs. He follows directions, but does not see the big picture that is not spelled out.

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There is a private group here. It is called: Middle/High School W/Learning Challeng  It was created by Onestepatatime and I think you have to request admission though her. The group is fairly young and fairly active. They have also been welcoming to parents of college age kids who can share btdt experience, but who also need a safe place to chat.

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There is a private group here. It is called: Middle/High School W/Learning Challeng  It was created by Onestepatatime and I think you have to request admission though her. The group is fairly young and fairly active. They have also been welcoming to parents of college age kids who can share btdt experience, but who also need a safe place to chat.

 

I tried sending her a pm, but it came back saying she can't receive new messages.  

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I'm part of that group.  Let me see if I can send an invite.  We could have a thread just on our Aspies.  

 

It's so interesting how you said there are fewer meltdowns but more rigid.  Mine is 19 now and it's the exact same.  So many ways he's better and so many ways he's worse (as far as fitting into society).  

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I'm pretty sure there is another group that focuses mainly on Aspie teens.  I remember thinking that it was a group I would never be invited to join b/c it was more of a rah-rah type group.  (I am pretty cynical about our ds's employability outside of an environment like Goodwill which is forgiving of his many issues and cynical about his ability to function independently as an adult even 10 yrs from now.)

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I invited Faithr and ehb87.  Does anyone else want an invite?  I'll see if OneStep will make a sub-forum for Aspies too.  

 

If anyone would rather we just have our own Aspie group, I can do that too.  

 

Thank you!  I sent a request to join.  

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Oh, I can so relate to all of the above.  It actually helps to know we are not alone in our struggles.  My DS (19) is diagnosed with ASD (Aspie), and it has definitely seemed to get exponentially harder as he has gotten older.  He needs A LOT of support from us to function at all.  Super smart academically, but completely lost socially/emotionally.  Simple things that we take for granted (like making a shopping list, or organizing time, making (even the simplest) decisions, or waking up to the alarm...), prove to be so challenging/debilitating for him.  We have struggled to find outside support for him as he has gotten older...lots of programs available for littles, but as he has aged up, fewer and fewer opportunities (at least that we've been able to find).  It doesn't help that he isn't terribly motivated to help himself (we fluctuate between 'it is your/his/her fault/problem' to 'I can't do anything right').

If it is still an option, I would also love to join the private group.

 

Thanks for being a listening ear!

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The best source of help we found for our Ds as an adult was through the state's Department of Rehabilitative Services. If you don't claim him on your taxes, he should qualify for all services for free. (On the job observation, job placement, job coach, special driver's training if he doesn't have his driver's license-- no need to go into the DMV for testing, etc.)

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We have a group here on TWRM Mom's w/ Teen Aspies. It's meant to cover the teen through the college years. It's a private group and definitely not "rah rah," because, well, we all get it. Parents of NT kids just don't get it. Just ask to join the group! 

Edited by TechWife
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We have a group here on TWRM Mom's w/ Teen Aspies. It's meant to cover the teen through the college years. It's a private group and definitely not "rah rah," because, well, we all get it. Parents of NT kids just don't get it. Just ask to join.

I have friends of all NT children who actually do understand and are great support. Equally, I know a couple of of parents of kids on the spectrum who haven't struggled with employment that don't "get it" and make assertions that all they need to do is to find their niche and are dismissive of the huge number of Aspies who struggle with employment.

 

Support comes in a lot of different forms.

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I have friends of all NT children who actually do understand and are great support. Equally, I know a couple of of parents of kids on the spectrum who haven't struggled with employment that don't "get it" and make assertions that all they need to do is to find their niche and are dismissive of the huge number of Aspies who struggle with employment.

 

Support comes in a lot of different forms.

 

You are absolutely correct. I've been over-generalizing. Thanks for pointing it out! 

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Oh, I can so relate to all of the above.  It actually helps to know we are not alone in our struggles.  My DS (19) is diagnosed with ASD (Aspie), and it has definitely seemed to get exponentially harder as he has gotten older.  He needs A LOT of support from us to function at all.  Super smart academically, but completely lost socially/emotionally.  Simple things that we take for granted (like making a shopping list, or organizing time, making (even the simplest) decisions, or waking up to the alarm...), prove to be so challenging/debilitating for him.  We have struggled to find outside support for him as he has gotten older...lots of programs available for littles, but as he has aged up, fewer and fewer opportunities (at least that we've been able to find).  It doesn't help that he isn't terribly motivated to help himself (we fluctuate between 'it is your/his/her fault/problem' to 'I can't do anything right').

If it is still an option, I would also love to join the private group.

 

Thanks for being a listening ear!

 

nm

Edited by Erica H
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Your son sounds so much like mine.  Brilliant academically, but the simplest things seem to stump him.  Mine hasn't been diagnosed with ASD and doesn't know we are pretty sure he has it.  I'm torn about telling him - I don't know if it will be a relief to know why he's different or if he will be upset.  He just recently started expressing frustration with himself - that he's clumsy, socially awkward, has no friends, etc.  Our big struggle right now is driving.  He can drive easy routes that he's familiar with, but is terrible with directions and can't drive on the highway or on busy roads.  I don't know what we're going to do about that.  He has a summer internship and we were able to find him an apartment very close to where he works and shops (he walks to work).  But sometimes things come up for work where he needs to drive and he can't.  And he can't drive home (we are three hours away) for the weekend.  

 

FWIW -- DS is 17 and has been seeing a psychiatrist for anxiety for a few months. She believes he is ASD, but she told me and not him. I don't know why. After thinking it over for a few weeks (and waiting for his school year to be over) I told him. I think he's been relieved.

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FWIW -- DS is 17 and has been seeing a psychiatrist for anxiety for a few months. She believes he is ASD, but she told me and not him. I don't know why. After thinking it over for a few weeks (and waiting for his school year to be over) I told him. I think he's been relieved.

 

 

nm

Edited by Erica H
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