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wonkabar

Sensory Integration Dysfunction And Gluten Intolerance

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FYI, I agree with all of this, but keep in mind that SID can go the other way as well. I have a 2 y.o. who also has SID, but he is UNDERsensitive to almost every sensation--touch, taste, motion, etc.

Oh, no doubt about it! With all that I've written, I'm sorry I wasn't as clear about that. Zachary LOVES input through his feet...he asks for us to rub cream into his feet! :P (He sounds like me!) When he gets a little "stimmy" he'll rub his feet on the floor to get the input. We always let him run around barefoot both inside and out...he just loves it! He likes to run from point A to point B. Nothing like a little vestibular and proprioceptive input from the tv room to the kitchen!! :blink: We always laugh and tell eachother that he'll never work for the CIA b/c he's too heavy on his feet and can't sit still long enough to focus on the person he's spying on!! :lol:

:) Toni, omgosh, you are a busy, busy girl. I was wondering what the differences are with Aspergers and Sensory Integration-they both seem so similar.

There are HUGE differences b/t Asperger's Syndrome and SID. More often than not, kids with Asperger's Syndrome have sensory issues, but SID and Asperger's Syndrome are two *very* different things. Asperger's Syndrome falls on the Autistic Spectrum (Pervasive Developmental Delay). Kids with Asperger's are typically very bright and articulate, have language skills that are quite advanced/atypical for their age ("little professors" is often the term you hear), have poor social skills, have difficulty understanding non-verbal language, often perseverate on one particular point of interest (flags, cars, trees, maps, geography, etc) and tend to be "clumsy"/non-athletic just to name a few of the characteristics. SID can also be Dx far earlier than Asperger's Syndrome. I hope Toni adds to this as well. Ursula should also be able to give great insight, too.

I'm so happy that so many of you responded to my post. I never expected to get this many responses!! :D Putting Zachary on a gluten free diet was purely for medical reasons. It had nothing to do with SID or ADD. Yes, his behavior was *much* better once he went gluten-free...I'd be throwing myself around crying all the time if I felt like sh** all day, too. But, we haven't seen a dramatic change in his sensory or attentional issues as a result of the gluten-free diet. If anything, it made it much easier to identify the fact that he is *truly* distractable and inattentive. The other behaviors were absolutely the result of him feeling lousy all of the time.

While I think removing gluten can improve issues related to SID and ADD, I don't believe it's in any way a "cure-all". They are both far more complicated than that. The flip side is that a gluten-free diet is non-invasive and healthy so it's a win-win situation. Considering there's been so many responses to this topic I'll ask...what do you all think?

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Okay, I've been avoiding this thread, knowing I shouldn't. MyThreeSons, if you'd combine your three sons into one, you'd have me. :blink: I have AS, TS and almost all the sensory issues in that list (and a few that aren't on that list). But I am not undersensitive for the most part.

Tags drive me out of my mind (I have to cut out the tags and wash everything before I can wear it). I can only wear soft things, that don't bind anywhere (tight clothing is completely out). I am very light and sound sensitive, sudden noises (even if they aren't very loud) startle me (I jump out of my skin at times), as does somebody tapping me on the shoulder to get my attention (anybody who does that might get slapped, which is an instant reaction I can't control). Being patted on my back feels like somebody hitting me (my husband finally stopped that a couple of years ago, it took him that long to believe me).

In fact, I generally hate being touched (other than by babies and small children). I have learned to appreciate a caring hug these past years (but not a surprise one, I have to know it's coming).

I love shiny things and used to really love spinning tops as a kid (I still like them, but stopped playing with things like that, because my kids would tell me how childish I am, and that made me feel bad, I only do it in secret now <_< ).

I used to go and swing on a swing for hours when I felt bad. Can't do that now, because I get too motion sick (I get motion sick from anything that moves).

Smells bother me that others don't even notice. During the summer I said once, that I had to go inside, because 'the smell' (whatever it was) was driving me crazy, and nobody else could smell it.

My socks have to be on just right, sometimes I take my shoes off several times, having to adjust my socks, before I am able to go out. That's one reason I like sandal-season, don't have to worry about that.

I am VERY distractible. I also tend to be a toe-walker when I walk in bare feet.

I find that fairly frequently, I can hear somebody talking, but can't figure out what they're saying (it sounds like total gibberish). Sometimes people get very annoyed with me for having to repeat something several times, before I understand what they're saying (it's very embarassing to me).

I can't eat anything 'slimy' (like fat meat, or cooked raisins), it makes me gag, and if I try to swallow it anyway, I'll vomit. So, if I inadvertently put something into my mouth when at somebody else's house, it's much more 'polite' to try to discreetly spit out the offending food, than trying to swallow it ;) .

My coordination isn't great, exactly. I have to consciously pay attention to walking, or I'll stumble. If I get distracted it's worse (like having to talk to somebody while walking). I also have a bad 'habit' of walking into doorframes or table corners. I think that particular one has gotten a little better being gluten-free (I don't think I have as many bruises as I used to have :D ).

Uhmmmmm, as to resisting new situations, me????????? Yes, I HATE new situations, and avoid them if I can.

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Guest ~jules~
:) Omg, Alison, my oldest son had to play with my hair to fall asleep too! I used to get so tired and neck cramps, so one day gave him my mothers' wig to hold and he freaked out so bad! I never knew another one like that -wow, the symptoms that are so obscure and strange with some of these things are unbelievable. He would stand and look up at ceiling fans for ages, and loved to stare at windshield wipers moving. He also loved pinwheels and would tip his trikes over and spin the wheels for ages. This is so eye-opening. Thank you so much for this information everyone.

Wow, my youngest is now 6, I am reading through this thread and caught this. My yougest son as a baby-almost toddler pulled and played with my hair, it got to the point that he balded me on the bang areas even though my hair is all one length. And WOW...also he stared at the same things...to this day he is a very hyper active child.

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Okay, I've been avoiding this thread, knowing I shouldn't.

I'm so glad you stopped avoiding this thread. ;) You're always such a great source of information and have so much insight!

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I was wondering what the differences are with Aspergers and Sensory Integration-they both seem so similar.

Very many kids with Asperger's do have SID, but SID doesn't have many of the components of AS. From http://www.aspergers.com/aspcrit.htm:

DSM-IV DIAGNOSTIC CRITERIA FOR ASPERGER'S DISORDER

A.Qualitative impairment in social interaction, as manifested by at least two of the following:

(1) marked impairment in the use of multiple nonverbal behaviors such as eye-to-eye gaze, facial expression, body postures, and gestures to regulate social interaction

(2) failure to develop peer relationships appropriate to developmental level

(3) a lack of spontaneous seeking to share enjoyment, interests, or achievements with other people (e.g., by a lack of showing, bringing, or pointing out objects of interest to other people)

(4) lack of social or emotional reciprocity

B.Restricted repetitive and stereotyped patterns of behavior, interests, and activities, as manifested by at least one of the following:

(1) encompassing preoccupation with one or more stereotyped and restricted patterns of interest that is abnormal either in intensity or focus

(2) apparently inflexible adherence to specific, nonfunctional routines or rituals

(3) stereotyped and repetitive motor mannerisms (e.g., hand or finger flapping or twisting, or complex whole-body movements)

(4) persistent preoccupation with parts of objects

C.The disturbance causes clinically significant impairment in social, occupational, or other important areas of functioning.

D.There is no clinically significant general delay in language (e.g., single words used by age 2 years, communicative phrases used by age 3 years).

E.There is no clinically significant delay in cognitive development or in the development of age-appropriate self-help skills, adaptive behavior (other than in social interaction), and curiosity about the environment in childhood.

F.Criteria are not met for another specific Pervasive Developmental Disorder or Schizophrenia.

GILLBERG'S CRITERIA FOR ASPERGER'S DISORDER

1.Severe impairment in reciprocal social interaction

(at least two of the following)

(a) inability to interact with peers

(B) lack of desire to interact with peers

© lack of appreciation of social cues

(d) socially and emotionally inappropriate behavior

2.All-absorbing narrow interest

(at least one of the following)

(a) exclusion of other activities

(B) repetitive adherence

© more rote than meaning

3.Imposition of routines and interests

(at least one of the following)

(a) on self, in aspects of life

(B) on others

4.Speech and language problems

(at least three of the following)

(a) delayed development

(B) superficially perfect expressive language

© formal, pedantic language

(d) odd prosody, peculiar voice characteristics

(e) impairment of comprehension including misinterpretations of literal/implied meanings

5.Non-verbal communication problems

(at least one of the following)

(a) limited use of gestures

(B) clumsy/gauche body language

© limited facial expression

(d) inappropriate expression

(e) peculiar, stiff gaze

6.Motor clumsiness: poor performance on neurodevelopmental examination

(All six criteria must be met for confirmation of diagnosis.)

While I think removing gluten can improve issues related to SID and ADD, I don't believe it's in any way a "cure-all". They are both far more complicated than that. The flip side is that a gluten-free diet is non-invasive and healthy so it's a win-win situation. Considering there's been so many responses to this topic I'll ask...what do you all think?

Well, I may be putting all my kids on a gluten-free diet, but not for their neurological issues, although I know there is a correlation between implementing the diet and improved functioning. I know too many families who have tried to implement the diet and just got undermined left and right by the school, neighbors, or well-meaning family.

But if I do it for a MEDICAL reason, they can't be so flippant, eh? I mean, I got a letter from the school telling me there was a child in my son's class who has a peanut allergy so please be aware when we're sending food to school for parties and such. I mean, if they have to do that for a peanut allergy, then they have to do that for a gluten allergy, eh?

Anyway, that wasn't what I had intended on posting about. LOL Honestly, I'm trying to figure out my own issues with gluten before I subject my children to the diet. And they are having digestive issues, so I definitely have plans to think about the diet for them. Um, was that non-commital or what!? LOL

I'm waiting to see my EnteroLab results, and then I'm sure I'll start getting my kids tested as well. Whether or not I do the diet will be based on their medical concerns, not their behavioral concerns.

Okay, I've been avoiding this thread, knowing I shouldn't. MyThreeSons, if you'd combine your three sons into one, you'd have me. :blink: I have AS, TS and almost all the sensory issues in that list (and a few that aren't on that list).

LOL Yes, I did notice that in your signature. I took it as confirmation that my AS son WILL eventually grow up and be able to have a rational conversation...sooner or later....right? LOL

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Hi

I wanted to add that my almost 3 yr old Zachary has been dealing with reflux/food issues hsi entire life

He has always been VERY sensitive to sound/light etc and has what I call a Dr Jekyl/Mr Hyde personality

He has been dairy/soy free his entire life

It wasn't until Dh started talking about HIS reaction to gluten (cramps, b/m problems etc after eating pizza) that I started to think about zach's behavior and a possible connection

My friend's son who is autistic has been told by several Dr to try a dairy/gluten free diet

Anyway, Zach has never had b/w or biopsy for celiac but on a gluten-free diet he is a different kid

he is still a crazy 3yr old (I've always had a bit of a spazzy persoanlity/ADD) but he is much less bothered by noise/light, calmer, etc etc

Kim

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Somehow, I had not seen this thread until today.

My older son, age 8, was dx with Sensory Integration Dysfunction at about 4 years of age. He was language delayed as well. He's been tested for Celiac and gluten intolerance, twice. All results come back as negative as they can possibly get. We were, of course, relieved. (He had all his testing done with the Great Plains Labratory - looking for peptides in the urine)

But, then 3 years later... my daughter was DX with Celiac, and was dx gluten intolerant. So, what gives??

We are thinking about having my older son tested AGAIN.

He was in occupational therapy for 3 years, and is now in the 3rd grade and doing great!!! However, we are starting to have "issues" in the home again.

I swear, if I put him on a gluten-free/CF diet, he'd starve to death. He lives on pasta and crunch foods.

I have not yet read the majority of the replies here...but I'm going back to do so.

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Jayhawkmom, if you don't already have Special Diets for Special Kids by Lisa Lewis, please try to find a copy. She talks at great length about kids with these issues who will eat nothing but nuggets and fries. She put in a lot of gluten-free CF recipes (and this was way back before Annalise Roberts even thought about gluten-free!).

gluten-free ingredients today are easier to find, and genius recipes abound. You can duplicate nearly an gluteny food you can think of, and it will actually taste GOOD and close to the original.

Glutino even makes gluten-free pretzels that taste just like...pretzels!

And Tinkyada pasta tastes like--pasta! (Can't say that about all gluten-free pastas.)

If it helps--it's worth a try. You can always give it a couple of months, and if you don't see any change, go back to whatever you were eating before.

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I want to add that it is suspicious that your son only wants to eat gluten containing foods. It might mean that he is addicted to them, and when you're addicted to something you're also intolerant/allergic to it.

So, even if you manage to get him to eat the substitutes, be aware that he may have bad withdrawal symptoms and will likely turn into a monster for a while. Which may mean that rather than the diet making him worse, it is likely working. Just thought I'd warn you.

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gluten-free ingredients today are easier to find, and genius recipes abound. You can duplicate nearly an gluteny food you can think of, and it will actually taste GOOD and close to the original.

Thanks. My daughter has been gluten-free since June, so I'm getting pretty good about finding substitutions. We LOVE the Glutino Pretzals. I can't get my son to eat them though.

Ursula... I've been told that before, much to my dismay. So, if he refuses to eat anything else.... how in the world do I get him to eat anything else??

Since he has no outward symptoms, it's difficult to even consider. He's growing just fine, in fact...he's pretty darn tall, but skinny. He's a great student, does very well in school, is rarely sick...but when he does get sick, it's almost always asthma related. Even still.... I know that in the real world of Celiac, none of that means anything. *sigh*

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Thanks. My daughter has been gluten-free since June, so I'm getting pretty good about finding substitutions. We LOVE the Glutino Pretzals. I can't get my son to eat them though.

Ursula... I've been told that before, much to my dismay. So, if he refuses to eat anything else.... how in the world do I get him to eat anything else??

Since he has no outward symptoms, it's difficult to even consider. He's growing just fine, in fact...he's pretty darn tall, but skinny. He's a great student, does very well in school, is rarely sick...but when he does get sick, it's almost always asthma related. Even still.... I know that in the real world of Celiac, none of that means anything. *sigh*

You know, if ALL you served at home is gluten-free food (your husband will have to agree with that), and there is absolutely NOTHING else to eat, what will he do? He may go on a temporary hunger strike (that is a definite possibility), but a kid that age won't be able to keep it up for long, before he'd give in and eat whatever is around (even if you have to pretend you can't see him sneaking the gluten-free food, because he is starving but won't openly admit defeat). He will NOT starve himself, believe me. Especially if you make an effort to make (or buy) the most appealing gluten-free foods you can find (which of course, you may not be able to keep up for long, healthwise or money wise, but it will be good for 'bait', anyway).

You won't know what will happen until you try. :D

Since somebody posted all the (negative) symptoms of AS, I thought I'd even things out a little, and post a list of all the positive aspects of AS. This list has been published and put together by Tony Attwood (in Australia), one of the two leading AS experts in the world.

Discovery criteria for aspie by Attwood and Gray

A. A qualitative advantage in social interaction, as manifested by a majority of the following:

1. peer relationships characterized by absolute loyalty and impeccable dependability

2. free of sexist, "age-ist", or culturalist biases; ability to regard others at "face value"

3. speaking one’s mind irrespective of social context or adherence to personal beliefs

4. ability to pursue personal theory or perspective despite conflicting evidence

5. seeking an audience or friends capable of: enthusiasm for unique interests and topics;

consideration of details; spending time discussing a topic that may not be of primary interest

6. listening without continual judgement or assumption

7. interested primarily in significant contributions to conversation; preferring to avoid

"ritualistic small talk" or socially trivial statements and superficial conversation.

8. seeking sincere, positive, genuine friends with an unassuming sense of humour

B Fluent in "Aspergerese", a social language characterized by at least three of the following:

1. a determination to seek the truth

2. conversation free of hidden meaning or agenda

3. advanced vocabulary and interest in words

4. fascination with word-based humour, such as puns

5. advanced use of pictorial metaphor

C. Cognitive skills characterized by at least four of the following:

1. strong preference for detail over gestalt

2. original, often unique perspective in problem solving

3. exceptional memory and/or recall of details often forgotten or disregarded by others,

for example: names, dates, schedules, routines

4. avid perseverance in gathering and cataloguing information on a topic of interest

5. persistence of thought

6. encyclopaedic or "celiac disease ROM" knowledge of one or more topics

7. knowledge of routines and a focused desire to maintain order and accuracy

8. clarity of values/decision making unaltered by political or financial factors

D. Additional possible features:

1. acute sensitivity to specific sensory experiences and stimuli, for example:

hearing, touch, vision, and/or smell

2. strength in individual sports and games, particularly those involving

endurance or visual accuracy, including rowing, swimming, bowling, chess

3. "social unsung hero" with trusting optimism: frequent victim of social

weaknesses of others, while steadfast in the belief of the possibility of genuine friendship

4. increased probability over general population of attending university after high school

5. often take care of others outside the range of typical development

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Ursula,

Would you mind if I contacted you, personally, regarding some "Aspie" issues? When my son was 4, his pediatrician sent us for a full developmental screening - he was convinced that Joshua has Asperger's Syndrome. He was screened at the University of Kansas Medical Center. We spent a whole day there, we saw physchologists, psychiatrists, developmental pediatricians, occupational therapist, SLP's, and a bunch of other doctors.

They came back with their "results" and told us that while Joshua has some "aspie type tendancies" and signs of OCD - he didn't really "fit" anywhere on the Autistic Spectrum. Of course, we were very well relieved, but then we were told that we'd "probably be back to revisit the evaluation" when he reached somewhere between the ages of 7-9. They were right.

They considered him "quirky" with sensory issues. And yes, quirky was the word THEY used to describe him...and boy, it fits.

I don't want to hijack this thread, but I was hoping to be able to further discuss this with someone who understands.

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Of course I am willing to help you. I am sending you my e-mail address by PM.

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ROFLAMO!!!! :D:lol::D:lol::D

This happened well before my own personal gluten concerns, otherwise I would've been checking the label! LOL

Given your own family dynamics, you might be able to appreciate this mix:

*12 y.o. Asperger's child who is extremely sensory defensive

*9 y.o. Tourette's child

*2 y.o. with low sensory registration and limited language skills whose primary language is screaming

*33 y.o. with a migraine

*very small sedan

Yikes! Sounds like quite the nightmare. :P

Lots of fun, though. :)

However, since starting Topamax, I haven't had a single migraine. If yours get really bad, it might be worth a call to your doctor...

Shalia

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Wow, Nic--when my daughter was 5 weeks old, she ran a fever, and the pediatrician immediately had her admitted to the hospital and treated for bacterial meningitis--which it wasn't. They determined on the 4th day that it was 5th disease. I do understand why they felt they had to treat it as meningitis, though. And I also found out that between 4-7 weeks, the immunity in breast milk drops, but the baby's own immune system doesn't start to kick in until 7-8 weeks. Wish I'd known that earlier.

This year, (she's 5) she has developed some tactile issues--mostly, itchiness in response to non-cotton clothing, and extreme itchiness when she gets upset. She also can't seem to feel when it's time to go pee, although she will pee on the toilet just fine when I ask her to.

I have some mild tactile issues of my own (Itchiness, I hate being touched on my arms, and I can't stand music played at a level that seems acceptable to everyone else (say, at the health club). These all only seemed to start in the last 10 years or so--and I've only had signs of gluten intolerance the last couple of years. Coincidentally (or not), the last couple of years were when I started baking bread and serving pasta (because my kids liked it so much.

Both my oldest son and my daughter need warm bodies to sleep with them. The son makes do with the cat; the daughter is still little enough to get away falling asleep with one of us. The middle kid has always had a major hair fetish, and always put himself to sleep playing with my hair.

Hmmmm....

Hi, my son was given a spinal tap and it determined meningitis. So we staying in the hospital for several days waiting to see if bacteria would grow and indicate it was bacterial. It did not so they said it was viral. My son who is diagnosed Celiac complains that everything hurts him when he has been glutened. I can't even wash or towel dry his hair without him yelling. Anyone else have a similar reaction?

Nicole

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Doctors always say that in most cases of a developmentally delayed child with hypotonia they never find the cause. That just doesn't sit right with me.

Nicole

Very often there is no explanation or direct cause for developmental delays. The types of delays that our kids have are neurologically based, however if there's been no trauma to the brain it's almost impossible to give an answer as to "why?". There is a genetic component to sensory related issues, though.

I can't even wash or towel dry his hair without him yelling. Anyone else have a similar reaction?

Nicole

I feel your pain!! Over a year ago, Zachary would scream and shake his head at the sound of shower. He was both over-stimulated by and hypersensitive to the sound. :blink: He'd also cry, yell and jump out of the tub when we tried to wash his hair. :blink: This certainly made bathtime VERY stressful. Now neither one of these things are a problem. In fact, he loves to take a shower and is all about washing his hair if it's a game of sorts!

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Discovery criteria for aspie by Attwood and Gray

A. A qualitative advantage in social interaction, as manifested by a majority of the following:

1. peer relationships characterized by absolute loyalty and impeccable dependability

2. free of sexist, "age-ist", or culturalist biases; ability to regard others at "face value"

3. speaking one’s mind irrespective of social context or adherence to personal beliefs

4. ability to pursue personal theory or perspective despite conflicting evidence

5. seeking an audience or friends capable of: enthusiasm for unique interests and topics;

consideration of details; spending time discussing a topic that may not be of primary interest

6. listening without continual judgement or assumption

7. interested primarily in significant contributions to conversation; preferring to avoid

"ritualistic small talk" or socially trivial statements and superficial conversation.

8. seeking sincere, positive, genuine friends with an unassuming sense of humour

B Fluent in "Aspergerese", a social language characterized by at least three of the following:

1. a determination to seek the truth

2. conversation free of hidden meaning or agenda

3. advanced vocabulary and interest in words

4. fascination with word-based humour, such as puns

5. advanced use of pictorial metaphor

C. Cognitive skills characterized by at least four of the following:

1. strong preference for detail over gestalt

2. original, often unique perspective in problem solving

3. exceptional memory and/or recall of details often forgotten or disregarded by others,

for example: names, dates, schedules, routines

4. avid perseverance in gathering and cataloguing information on a topic of interest

5. persistence of thought

6. encyclopaedic or "celiac disease ROM" knowledge of one or more topics

7. knowledge of routines and a focused desire to maintain order and accuracy

8. clarity of values/decision making unaltered by political or financial factors

D. Additional possible features:

1. acute sensitivity to specific sensory experiences and stimuli, for example:

hearing, touch, vision, and/or smell

2. strength in individual sports and games, particularly those involving

endurance or visual accuracy, including rowing, swimming, bowling, chess

3. "social unsung hero" with trusting optimism: frequent victim of social

weaknesses of others, while steadfast in the belief of the possibility of genuine friendship

4. increased probability over general population of attending university after high school

5. often take care of others outside the range of typical development

I second that! Thanks for thinking of it, Ursula.

However, since starting Topamax, I haven't had a single migraine. If yours get really bad, it might be worth a call to your doctor...

Thanks, I do take Relpax for the migraines as a PRN. It works pretty well. But some days the migraine hits on the way home.....

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You know, if ALL you served at home is gluten-free food (your husband will have to agree with that), and there is absolutely NOTHING else to eat, what will he do? He may go on a temporary hunger strike (that is a definite possibility), but a kid that age won't be able to keep it up for long, before he'd give in and eat whatever is around (even if you have to pretend you can't see him sneaking the gluten-free food, because he is starving but won't openly admit defeat). He will NOT starve himself, believe me. Especially if you make an effort to make (or buy) the most appealing gluten-free foods you can find (which of course, you may not be able to keep up for long, healthwise or money wise, but it will be good for 'bait', anyway).

You won't know what will happen until you try. :D

Since somebody posted all the (negative) symptoms of AS, I thought I'd even things out a little, and post a list of all the positive aspects of AS. This list has been published and put together by Tony Attwood (in Australia), one of the two leading AS experts in the world.

Discovery criteria for aspie by Attwood and Gray

A. A qualitative advantage in social interaction, as manifested by a majority of the following:

1. peer relationships characterized by absolute loyalty and impeccable dependability

2. free of sexist, "age-ist", or culturalist biases; ability to regard others at "face value"

3. speaking one’s mind irrespective of social context or adherence to personal beliefs

4. ability to pursue personal theory or perspective despite conflicting evidence

5. seeking an audience or friends capable of: enthusiasm for unique interests and topics;

consideration of details; spending time discussing a topic that may not be of primary interest

6. listening without continual judgement or assumption

7. interested primarily in significant contributions to conversation; preferring to avoid

"ritualistic small talk" or socially trivial statements and superficial conversation.

8. seeking sincere, positive, genuine friends with an unassuming sense of humour

B Fluent in "Aspergerese", a social language characterized by at least three of the following:

1. a determination to seek the truth

2. conversation free of hidden meaning or agenda

3. advanced vocabulary and interest in words

4. fascination with word-based humour, such as puns

5. advanced use of pictorial metaphor

C. Cognitive skills characterized by at least four of the following:

1. strong preference for detail over gestalt

2. original, often unique perspective in problem solving

3. exceptional memory and/or recall of details often forgotten or disregarded by others,

for example: names, dates, schedules, routines

4. avid perseverance in gathering and cataloguing information on a topic of interest

5. persistence of thought

6. encyclopaedic or "celiac disease ROM" knowledge of one or more topics

7. knowledge of routines and a focused desire to maintain order and accuracy

8. clarity of values/decision making unaltered by political or financial factors

D. Additional possible features:

1. acute sensitivity to specific sensory experiences and stimuli, for example:

hearing, touch, vision, and/or smell

2. strength in individual sports and games, particularly those involving

endurance or visual accuracy, including rowing, swimming, bowling, chess

3. "social unsung hero" with trusting optimism: frequent victim of social

weaknesses of others, while steadfast in the belief of the possibility of genuine friendship

4. increased probability over general population of attending university after high school

5. often take care of others outside the range of typical development

Thank you so much for posting this. There are times when I get very concerned about the negative aspects of my DS's aspergers that I forget about all the positives that it has given him and to lesser extent myself. I know it sounds funny but in many ways I am glad that he is an aspie, he is so responsible and has always respected the rules we have to try and live by.

When he was younger it was much more troubling, he once let some bullies roll him up in a gym mat and pummel him for an extended period of time. When I asked why he didn't fight back his reason was because it was against the rules. This sort of thing happened to him all through school, he would never fight back until one day he snapped and sent a much larger boy all the way across the hall and onto the floor in middle school. He and the other boy got suspended and I was livid, the other boy had been shoving and hitting him for months. He refused to let me go to bat for him about the suspention because it was the rules, he deserved it he broke the rules. When he was older the thought of drinking and driving never crossed his mind, he also will ignore illness to go to his classes and this has resulted in a nice scholarship and a guarenteed job after he graduates at Xmas.

It has been hard for him socially, he hates large groups of people and small talk so people tend to think of him as rather aloof until they get to know him. But once they get to know him he is a steadfast freind and will go out of his way when needed to help them.

It is hard as a parent to watch our children struggle. I get too caught up a lot in the what if's of life and sometimes it takes a post like yours to make me realize that there is good and bad in everything. And in the end, in my mind, being an Aspie for my DS has really been more of an asset than a detriment. Thank you for pointing this out, sometimes I just need a reminder that perhaps being an Aspie has it's good points.

Ursula, on a differnt note something struck me from another post......

"2 y.o. with low sensory registration and limited language skills whose primary language is screaming"

You have most likely already checked this out but this describes my DD at the age of two perfectly but add biting on to it. For her it turned out she had issues with her hearing, she had an ear infection that cleared but left her with fluid but no infection. She lost all her speech, she had started to talk early, and began communicating with screams, hitting and biting. She required multiple sets of tubes in her ears after it was finally found, that took almost a year, OT and speech therapy for years but the hearing issue was the cause. This is most likely not the cuase in your little ones problems but just in case I wanted to mention it.

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"2 y.o. with low sensory registration and limited language skills whose primary language is screaming"

That was a quote from me. We did have his hearing checked when he first started having speech problems. Although he did poorly on the behavioral tests (probably because of his low sensory registration) he aced the ABR.

As to the information you posted about your son--thanks so much for giving me a glimpse of what I can hope for for my 12 y.o. aspie. He's in middle school right now, and although he's in a private school just for aspies, I do worry about how he'll handle the high school and college years.

He sounds a lot like your son, as far as the loyalty, the rule following, and not fighting back. I won't recount the incidents (because it still hurts to think of him going through them) but I remember many times how he suffered at the hands of other students, many of whom he thought were his friends.

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I didn't know that there was a school just for Aspies! (Boy, wouldn't that be a teacher's dream job? No rule breaking!!! :) )

My #1 son, too, is a major rule follower. He is just beginning to see the grey areas, though. His cousins, whom he adores, have some of the same sibling issues as my my #1 son (rule follower) and my #2 son (rule breaker). My son can't bear the thought of either of his beloved cousins being in the wrong, and this seems to help him understand that there is sometimes a grey middle ground where black-and-white rules simply aren't appropriate and could actually hurt (as in punish) rather than help (as in teach).

Where is this school for Aspies? Is it the only one of its kind?

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Where is this school for Aspies? Is it the only one of its kind?

The one my son goes to is in NJ. In Burlington County. Just so happens to be in our district, but kids from all over the state go there.

There are aspie schools in many areas. It has done WONDERS for Alex. They let him pace himself and work in his own way. He pretty much teaches himself the math and has flown ahead in that area. The language is tougher for him so they go slower.

This year, his class has 7 kids and 4 teachers! There are individual "centers" where subjects are taught, and its one teacher to about 3 kids in each center. There is a lot of "free time" which they use to work on social skills. The kids think they're just playing video games, chess, or playing on the internet, but really they're learning how to interact with others. ;)

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Since somebody posted all the (negative) symptoms of AS, I thought I'd even things out a little, and post a list of all the positive aspects of AS. This list has been published and put together by Tony Attwood (in Australia), one of the two leading AS experts in the world.

Ursula, This list was great!! I'm gonna print it and mail it to my girlfriends who are still teaching. They'll love it, too!! I've worked with so many teachers who look at kids with AS, and many other issues, as pains-in-the @**. :angry: This would certainly give them some food for thought now wouldn't it??!!. :rolleyes: It makes you wonder who really doesn't "get it", huh??

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Oh--what about transitioning from an Aspie school to college? Is there any literature about if these kids have an easier time? Or who knows, maybe a harder time?

Well, every kid is different, as you know. Some kids just will not be able to handle anything other than vocational training. My son is VERY intelligent and will do very well in a technical, engineering, or programming field.

I don't know about literature on this...I'd have to do some research. There are programs available (especially if your son is involved in your state's equivalent of NJ's Division of Developmental Disabilities) that will help young adults get integrated into the college setting or job setting.

I'm not *quite* there yet with my son, so I don't know that much about those programs yet.

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Ursula, This list was great!! I'm gonna print it and mail it to my girlfriends who are still teaching. They'll love it, too!! I've worked with so many teachers who look at kids with AS, and many other issues, as pains-in-the @**. :angry: This would certainly give them some food for thought now wouldn't it??!!. :rolleyes: It makes you wonder who really doesn't "get it", huh??

You know, it is hard for me when people consider AS as a 'mental illness', or a disease, and treat Aspies like something is seriously wrong with them, just because they're different. Why is 'different' so often thought of as 'defective'? So, I think this list puts things a little into perspective.

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