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Old 10-19-2013, 06:13 PM   #1
alizesmom
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Question about persistent behavior.

Rory, I don't know the proper term but I've learned that kids with autism fixate on certain things. My daughter has put herself in charge of family dressing. If we don't change from pajamas quick enough, she will drag us to our bedrooms over and over until we change. This, I can live with. She also critiques how we are dressed by trying to remove any clothing she doesn't like. This is not acceptable. I just haven't figured out how to stop her from tearing at my cloths. Any ideas? BTW she is nonverbal.
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Old 10-19-2013, 08:46 PM   #2
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As you know what she is doing is communication.

The trick is how to reciprocate in a way that sets reasonable boundaries without suppressing her expression.

Children often understand much more verbal speech than it is easy to perceive when they are non verbal.

I would try to confirm her "fashion advice" as much as possible and let her you know how you feel about what you want to wear. Any chance of letting her help you with your choices before you change? This does not mean that you always have to agree with her wishes, but just her knowing you are considering and valuing her opinion can go a long way.

Any area of special interest is always a way to make connections
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Old 10-19-2013, 10:07 PM   #3
alizesmom
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Thanks for the response. I try to affirm her but she doesn't like anything that looks layered including sweaters and coats which makes cold weather difficult. Lol. Interestingly she doesn't seem to care what she wears.
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Old 10-20-2013, 06:44 AM   #4
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Is it safe to put a full length mirror where she gets dressed

How is she sensory wise, just and off chance that she is projecting how she would feel with layers on
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Old 10-21-2013, 05:23 PM   #5
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She wears layers without a problem, loves checking herself in the mirror, cuddly on her own terms and big on self stim with lots of spinning. I think her problem is related to seeing layers as meaning someone is leaving without her so she tries to dress us down. In my case she goes overboard.
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Old 10-22-2013, 06:12 AM   #6
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Interesting, our kids are always fun trying to do the detective work to dig to the underlying basis of the communication. Yes the practical implications can be frustrating, but the honest communication and love that is expresses it priceless
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Old 10-22-2013, 02:48 PM   #7
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Something off the top of my head. You would need to adapt them to her level of understanding.
Could you possibly do a social story, something along the line of everyone is different and they choose what they wear. Like Ann likes to wear this, Sally wears this and Mary wears something else. Ann, Sally and Mary are different people and they choose to wear different clothes.
Also, I was thinking of something along the lines of paper dolls, where you can change and add clothes. I've seen magnetic paper dolls, which I think would be easier to manipulate. Doing the story combined with paper dolls might be fun.
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Old 10-31-2013, 03:37 PM   #8
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I'd also add to the social story "when people leave they put on their coats", and "when people are cold they put on a sweater."

I agree that personal boundaries need to be set. One can't just drag someone away to get what one wants. That's really dangerous behavior, communication or not. Does she use boardmaker at all for communication?
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Old 10-31-2013, 08:02 PM   #9
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Schmeck, she has some rudimentary sign language. Socially and emotionally she is probably 2 years old. I shouldn't have said drags. She takes us by the hand and tries to lead us. If we refuse, she will eventually give up but she does have a one track mind. We don't allow her to strip us but that doesn't stop her from trying.
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Old 11-02-2013, 06:40 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alizesmom View Post
Schmeck, she has some rudimentary sign language. Socially and emotionally she is probably 2 years old. I shouldn't have said drags. She takes us by the hand and tries to lead us. If we refuse, she will eventually give up but she does have a one track mind. We don't allow her to strip us but that doesn't stop her from trying.
I'd recommend getting the boardmaker program if you can afford it - or if they use it at her school maybe they could print you out some icons. I've used it in the past with nonverbal/socially delayed students, and it's really helped. If you think her issue is that she thinks you are leaving, she could learn the icon for 'go' and 'stay' to start with, or maybe the icon for cold so that she could understand why you are putting on a sweater?
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Old 11-02-2013, 07:08 PM   #11
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Schemk, I'm not trying to be negative but the board has been tried and we will continue to offer it. She acts like it doesn't exist. It's as if she looks at an item and makes an immediate decision whether or not it's worth her attention.
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Old 11-09-2013, 08:37 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alizesmom View Post
Schemk, I'm not trying to be negative but the board has been tried and we will continue to offer it. She acts like it doesn't exist. It's as if she looks at an item and makes an immediate decision whether or not it's worth her attention.
I understand that completely! Spent a year with a student with the same issues. We ended up having someone draw us icons with Barney the dinosaur acting out the words we wanted (so a cold Barney, a hot Barney, a yes Barney, a no Barney) because that's all she would look at. How does she do at school with the same situation, or does she only do it at home? Can you ask the school for some communication help?
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Old 11-09-2013, 09:29 PM   #13
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Do you have an iPad? There are some great dressing apps (barbie, etc.) that may interest her. Melissa and Doug also have stand up dolls you can dress in magnetic clothes, maybe you can nurture it in a different way...

My DS is autistic too, pics only work for us with real people in them, not the board (pec) type ones.
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Old 02-14-2014, 11:17 AM   #14
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I would recommend getting the school involved. I know that if your child is in a public school this could be more difficult for you than if your child has been outplaced. The public school can often be the problem and not the solution to your child's needs. However, hopefully your child's school is the exception to the too common problem of battling the public schools for your child's rights.

Usually, most kids with an ASD have a certified BA helping the team. If there is a BA at the school, maybe they can come to your home and observe the behavior and come up with a behavior plan. If they can not come to your home you could have them observe the behavior with you at school.

If the public school is unwilling to provide a BA, and your child also displays this behavior with the teachers or other kids at school you could make the argument that it is necessary. You could argue that it is disruptive or that it involves invading someones personal space by the unwanted touching.

A BA most likely would be the best solution to this particular behavior.

Good luck.
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