Friday, May 11, 2012

A Visit from the Grandparents

My dad and his wife came to visit this last weekend. They have been trying to learn more about autism since SensiGirl was identified as having autism.  Dad has attended an autism seminar and plans to attend more as well as reading several books on the subject.  My step mom has been helpful and finding resources for them to educate themselves about autism. Dad is getting a different understanding of SensiGirl as well as me.
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I am adopted, so as I was growing up, my family put most of my differences down to me just being me. My mom took me to the doctor for my rocking, and were asked if I spoke. I did, so they were told not to worry about me, I would grow out of it. There was only a glimmer of understanding in the 1970's of sensory processing disorder or even autism as applied to a child who can speak. In some ways the doctor was right and I did grow out of most of it.
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 There was no understanding of my experience like I have for my children. My parents didn't know how to be sensory detectives since they had no reference for understanding it. They just thought I was misbehaving, being picky or whiny and that was the end of it. Now that I am a parent and have children of my own I am able to articulate what it is like for my children to move through the world, as well as how it was for myself all those years ago.
What was nice about their visit, besides having a chance to catch up is that since my dad and his wife are infrequent visitors they can see changes more readily.  They can hear how Random Guy has clear speech and there is no need for a speech specialist in school. They also are aware of how Random Guy has been bullied and they try to look out for him in their own way.
It was so nice to hear that they saw marked progress in SensiGirl's abilities to visit with them, pay attention to the conversations we where having, make eye contact and to regulate herself in a new environment. They know that some of this progress is due to the extra therapies and special education placement that SensiGirl has. This all is hard work, and they help me when I ask or however they know how. Thanks Mr. Grandpa Poppop and Grandma B.
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resources: bibliography of Dr. A Jean Ayers


  1. This was so nice to read. It's great that they're so supportive, I wish all parents were like them!

  2. It is nice that your dad and stepmom are really taking the steps to understand what is happening with your children. It is kind of strange how little was known when we were kids and to look back on it now and see where we fit, isn't it? My husband and I made a choice long ago to not involve our parents in my son's diagnosis because they are in their late 70s and 80s with problems of their own so we have chosen not to worry them as well as having serious doubts of their capacity for understanding autism.

    Nice to have a person who does not see the children that often to gauge their progress as well. Especially since our daily contact means we may not really "look" at the progress the same way someone else does. Sounds like it was a successful visit! :)