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Friday, October 15, 2010

Hear That? That's My Heart Breaking.

As we were driving to meet up with our homeschool group for P.E., he said something I will never forget. He told me in a very matter-of-fact tone, "I know why I don't have any friends anymore. It's because I'm weird. I do stuff other people don't do." Unless you've experienced this, you can't imagine how heart-breaking it is to hear your child say something like this. It made me even more determined to help him find his way. I told him, "You're not weird. Everybody's different." I didn't know what else to say and even that didn't seem to help much. It's hard when you're dealing with a kid who's really smart. He knows something's not right.

He does have a couple of friends, but it's true that as he's gotten older, fewer kids click with him. They've moved on and he's kind of stuck spinning his tires. He's always played well with younger kids and fortunately as homeschoolers, we have the advantage of a mixed group of kids. He's not sitting in a classroom surrounded by kids who are chronologically his age, but emotionally years ahead of him. I'm not sure "emotionally" is the right word, but mentally doesn't really fit because he's so smart. He's ahead in his schoolwork and he's always tested above grade level. So "mental" isn't really what I'm looking for. "Emotionally" will have to do. When he's playing with younger kids, though, he's as happy as can be. Since he's not rough or mean, none of the moms have a problem with him hanging with the little ones. Actually, they talk about how good he is with the little kids. So for now, I'll just make more of an effort to get him together with the kids he *does* click with so he doesn't feel so left out. And we'll keep working on the program.

7 comments:

Anonymous said...

I know how you feel as my son nearly the same thing to me about 3 years ago (he was then 7). Since then, alot has changed. He now has a close group of friends that he calls his "best" friends. Those kids parents have been told what is going on (My kid has AS)and most are okay with it. A few have told their boys, who in turn are okay with it. I don't broadcast it, though there are times (like in the middle of a meltdown in the grocery store) that it takes everything I have not to broadcast it. But for S and his "group" of 3 best friends all is well and good in their world!

Keep trying hun. It will get better! Remember that any kid will have their ups and downs. For a child with AS, the downs are lower and the ups are higher, but they tend to even out!

jaci said...

{{AMANDA}} You are such a wonderful & sensitive mom. I can imagine how your heart broke. But I really believe you are on the right track and one day this, too, will be in the past.

Valerie said...

Amanda, I think your answer was just right. Everyone is different. I went through something similar with my eldest when she was about ten years old. Now at 21 she has so many friends I can't keep them all straight. But when she was little it really hurt my heart when she said, "I don't really have any friends."

Lesa McMahon said...

it's an emotional/social gap. i knew exactly what you meant when you said it. his comment reminds me of i boy i know who is autistic... he comments all of the time about not having friends. i can see it really hurts him and it does break my heart.

i know yours will find his way because he's got you. {{{hugs}}}

Amanda said...

Thanks for the encouragement, ladies. :-)

Deanna said...

That made my heart hurt and I haven't even met your son. But you are doing everything possible to help him live up to his potential. You are a good mom.

Amanda said...

Thank you, Deanna.

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