Friday, September 25, 2009

The continuing story: he didn't go

september 25 2009

Finally we arrived at the day that my son (17) with classic autism would go to daycare.
A special facility where people with special needs get the chance to experience a real life working setting.

I woke him up at 6.30, as he requested.
We went downstairs, had breakfast, and then I was thrown back into years of struggling each morning for 1,5 to 2 hours to get him to school.
OK, he was a bit different, but he's older.

He moaned, argued, sobbed, yelled, threw with doors, and was perfectly clear: he was not going.

Ofcourse I went through all sorts of behaviour towards him: I was patient and kind, clear and strong, manipulative, even blackmailing him, but I could not change his mind.
Getting angry didn't help, nor did crying.

Even his dad, lying on the couch with his painful knee, meant he could help and started to try and give him enough confidence to go.
It didn't help at all.
The boy in question only got more angry and more afraid to go.

It's awful to see someone struggle so much with his own fears and lack of ability to take a risk.

When it was beyond the time he could reach his "job" in time, he was even told we could call to tell them he would be later, but it was very clear: he was not going.

So I called and told one of the daycare leaders he wouldn't come today.

Everyone calmed down, and to be honest, I felt sad and a bit betrayed that my first day without him after having him home for almost 2 years just had been nothing more than an illusion.

Later in the morning his tutor called.
She asked how he was and was very, very kind.
He even was invited to come over for a cup of tea in the afternoon.
But he didn't want to go and promised he would go next wednesday without any problems.

We've been in this situation before.
Not only that we had to deal with this kind of extreme behaviour, but also that he had his own system in his mind.

The last two weeks we have been there on wednesday. So he feels it's only logic that he starts on wednesday. Starting out of line, on friday, makes him feel uncomfortable.
He can't explain his feelings and he doesn't have an insight in this kind of obsession.

We can only hope that wednesday will be alright.

As a consequence of his early morning temper and meltdowns, he was rather kind today.
He even allowed the girls to practice for their bagpipe exam of tomorrow. (Practicing is not with bagpipes, but with a kind of flute.)

Please keep your fingers crossed for the girls, so they will get well through their exam.



  1. So sorry he couldn't go today. Hopefully Wednesday will be easier.


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