Little Lawyer

July 8, 2008 at 6:31 pm 4 comments

     C has incredible debate and discussion skills that fluctuate between charming and irritating. He has the ability to drone on, asking question after question, that renders the person to whom the questions are directed completely foggy. “Yes.” “No.” “I don’t know,” I’ll say, and realize after 30 minutes of questions that I’ve zoned off into la-la land and I’ve completely tuned him out. Too much of our interaction is simply meaningless drivel because he’s assaulting me with lists of questions and I’ve ended up in this place where I’m a zombie and it doesn’t really matter what I say as long as I say something. This is hard for me to admit, as it brings to mind a parenting style I don’t wish to emulate.

           Granted, he is a curious child, but I see through this barrage of questions, and see his need to constantly connect with the people around him. He’s simply trying to engage, in whatever way possible, with the person on his radar screen. His way of engagement is battering one with questions, often ones asked a zillion times before, but perhaps in a slightly different way. While this curiosity is a positive trait in a child with an autism spectrum disorder, I see it for more than simple curiosity – it’s perseverative. Yet I think to myself it will make him a dynamite litigator someday.

     This rapid-fire questioning is coupled with a truly frustrating habit, which includes his coming up with another idea for anything I ask him to do. “C, please pick up those building blocks and put them away,” I’ll say. His response? “But I have another idea, Mommy.” This is followed by some other suggestion about building with those blocks, Mommy putting away those blocks, or throwing those blocks out the window. “But I have another idea” has become my least favorite sentence in his vocabulary. It doesn’t matter if the task is something he wants to complete or not, boring or fun, interesting or mundane. He always has another suggestion. And looking on the bright side, I tell myself it’s good he’s asserting his independence. 

     We waited many years for C to talk. I wouldn’t take back his words for anything, and I know how lucky we are to hear his voice. Yet in the same nanosecond of thought about how lucky we are to hear his voice, I admit to the occasional fantasy of joining a silent convent simply for a little peace and quiet.

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Entry filed under: autism. Tags: , , , , , , , , .

Sibling Revelry What if?

4 Comments Add your own

  • 1. robinaltman  |  July 9, 2008 at 3:27 am

    I love your observation that C’s barrage of questions is him trying to connect with people. A light went off for me. Maybe all little kids ask questions partly for that reason. If I get the Nobel Prize for this one, I’ll share it with you.

    Well I sure hope you’ll share! LOL! I don’t care about the credit, just want the $$$. 😉

    Reply
  • 2. Imapixiemama  |  July 9, 2008 at 6:19 am

    Oh boy. Remember how you said you wanted to check out Foster to see how C will be in a few years? Well, Foster still has another idea. All the time. The good news is that now, at age 5, he is starting to have some conversations – not directing or lecturing – honest-to-goodness observational conversation. Not a lot, but enough to bring some relief. And now we’re into math equations, too. So there’s a lot of “What’s a million plus… zero!” Followed by hysterical laughter. So I guess you could say he’s joking, too.

    I think that we – like most parents of children with autism – wish we had enjoyed the silence just a teeny bit more when we had it.

    Okay, I did go check out your blog, and what somehow both of us missed is that C is OLDER than Foster!!! C is 7. How funny is that? Guess I need to go read you more carefully!

    I always feel terrible complaining about the constant chatter, and quickly reminded myself he was silent for a long time. I guess sometimes I wish for the happy medium!

    Reply
  • 3. goodmum  |  July 9, 2008 at 9:42 am

    Oh man. I think we’re living the same life! Have you read my posts about Little Man and his questions? They might be the same kid, split in two! It’s so exhausting. Glad I’m not the only zombie mom who just grunts and mumbles her responses at times….

    No – I need to go read your blog thoroughly, which I will do this weekend! Fraternal twins born of different mothers, perhaps? LOL!

    Reply
  • 4. Imapixiemama  |  July 9, 2008 at 10:01 am

    Wow! How did we miss that? C is my oldest son’s age, then.

    I was thinking this, too, about your post on siblings a few days ago – Foster gets along brilliantly with his older brother. And fights with the younger two. A lot. When my girl was a baby, I was really worried he would hurt her. When she started crawling is exactly when Foster starting biting his own hands during tantrums. So that might be the bad side to siblings – too little quiet time & space for kids who prefer a lot of quiet time and space. However … when Foster’s chatting and math jokes are really driving me batty, I tell him to go tell a joke to his brother. It sure does give me a moment to breathe!

    I know that if we had more kids, it would just be a different set of issues, and I, for one, can’t stand the SHARING issue. It drives me nuts to hear kids fighting about toys, even though I know it’s a developmental step! And I really did want to sell my brother when I was a kid. And I know lots of people who can’t stand their siblings even when they are grown up, so I know it’s no guarantee of lifelong friendship. Plus when I see how absolutely SKILLED C is at dividing and conquering us, it’s scary to imagine what would happen if there was a sibling in the mix! I simply don’t think Husband and I are smart enough between us to handle THAT! LOL

    Reply

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