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JannaCope
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26 Sep 2016, 10:15 pm

My son is 14 and recently diagnosed with ASD. It took a while for a diagnosis, related to some other comorbities. Before the DSM change they were ruling out pervasive developmental disorder.

Anyway. Last year we found out he'd been sneaking out in the middle of the night and stealing food from a neighbors house. Later, we found out he was also cutting out pieces of girls underwear from the house. He didnt want to take the whole garmet for fear of getting caught. He wasn't sleeping well and come to find out a lot was being caused by his adhd meds. We did therapy, didnt get anywhere. He's been doing well for a year, really no issues. Until the other night. My 12 year old daughter had a sleep over and when they woke, noticed her friends sleep shorts and underwear had snips removed from them. They'd been cut. Little quarter size peices removed.

The girls thought maybe the dog did it. I knew it was my son, and he admitted it to me.

I didnt make a big deal about of it, for the girls' sake. I wrapped up the sleepover and explained the situation to her parents. They decided they didnt want her to know.

Ive installed alarms on all the doors and my son's door and we're never havi g sleepovers again. I cant get him into his therapist for 2 weeks. Im so freaked out. Im afraid he's going to turn into something horrible. He has no explanation. All we ever get is "I dont know". He seems to have a complete lack of regard for personal privacy and boundries. Im terrified for society and terrified he's deeply broken.

I cant sleep. My husband thinks he has a personality disorder and thinks we should commit him, but I still love him deeply and pray there's still hope. Is there? Is this something social skills and therapy can teach? Can you teach empathy? Im lost. I need to protect other first and foremost, but I have a duty to teach him and help him understand this is unacceptable.



Sweetleaf
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26 Sep 2016, 11:24 pm

That could really get him into trouble, better he get help now even if it means being committed to a psych facility as it could help him avoid trouble later on...if he did this thing as an adult he could probably get sex offense charges or something.


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Spiderpig
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27 Sep 2016, 12:14 am

That kind of "empathy" is best taught with tough love: you violate someone's boundaries, I violate the integrity of your bones.


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Jute
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27 Sep 2016, 7:08 am

Have you tried simply buying him a pack of cheap girl's underwear, to cut up, masturbate on, sniff or whatever it is that he's doing with the pieces that he steals? Simply tell him that if he wants some girl's underwear all he needs to do is say so and you'll buy them for him but impress upon him that he has no right to steal them. Remind him that stealing is a crime and that he could get in trouble with the police.


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ChorisOnoma
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27 Sep 2016, 1:06 pm

JannaCope wrote:
My son is 14 and recently diagnosed with ASD. It took a while for a diagnosis, related to some other comorbities. Before the DSM change they were ruling out pervasive developmental disorder.

Anyway. Last year we found out he'd been sneaking out in the middle of the night and stealing food from a neighbors house. Later, we found out he was also cutting out pieces of girls underwear from the house. He didnt want to take the whole garmet for fear of getting caught. He wasn't sleeping well and come to find out a lot was being caused by his adhd meds. We did therapy, didnt get anywhere. He's been doing well for a year, really no issues. Until the other night. My 12 year old daughter had a sleep over and when they woke, noticed her friends sleep shorts and underwear had snips removed from them. They'd been cut. Little quarter size peices removed.

The girls thought maybe the dog did it. I knew it was my son, and he admitted it to me.

I didnt make a big deal about of it, for the girls' sake. I wrapped up the sleepover and explained the situation to her parents. They decided they didnt want her to know.

Ive installed alarms on all the doors and my son's door and we're never havi g sleepovers again. I cant get him into his therapist for 2 weeks. Im so freaked out. Im afraid he's going to turn into something horrible. He has no explanation. All we ever get is "I dont know". He seems to have a complete lack of regard for personal privacy and boundries. Im terrified for society and terrified he's deeply broken.

I cant sleep. My husband thinks he has a personality disorder and thinks we should commit him, but I still love him deeply and pray there's still hope. Is there? Is this something social skills and therapy can teach? Can you teach empathy? Im lost. I need to protect other first and foremost, but I have a duty to teach him and help him understand this is unacceptable.

I might be able to shed some light on this. Being both an Addie and an Aspie, and it sounds like your son is both too, I recognize this kind of behavior from myself and from a young relative of mine. The stealing is a way to get a thrill. As a pre-teen/teenager, when ever I was visiting f.i school mates I would come home with my pockets filled with little stuffs, small toys, a handful of marbles, a tinker toy etc. I could never explain why I did it, or to myself how it actually happened. My answer to those questions was invariably "I dont know".
Because of my personal family situation (poor, broken home yada, yada) I graduated to money, food, and clothing around 16 - just aswell get something useful if I was gonna "do it anyway", right?

Today, through having read up on ADHD, I know that this behaviour is quite common in especially boys with ADHD. It has to do with us simply and constantly being bored out of our skulls. Addies are extremely often thrillseekers - the act of doing something dangerous or forbidden gives our brains/minds a very strong jolt of excitement that takes us out of our bored, sluggish state, for a brief moment we have crystal clear focus. It is a form of self-medication. However ridiculous this sounds, we literally cannot help doing the stuff we do.

Here in Sweden studies have shown that 60-70% of career criminals incarcerated for property crimes (petty theft, burglary, etc) are Addies. I have broken into homes, churches, and small shops, just for the thrill of doing it - I didn't know that at the time, but that was the reason. I was never caught as an adult. I didn't stop until I was around 30, when I found other, more acceptable ways of getting that jolt. (I fell in love)
The specific items are inconsequential. That it is girls' underwear that your son steals is - secondary (he is a 14 year old boy, full of hormones, and the nature of the items and the cutting out pieces is probably just "icing on the cake" in the thrill-department).

I would get him into a thrill delivering activity - these days lock-picking can actually be pursued as a sport, they even have actual, real competions.
Hunting, Skeet-shooting, Parkour, Paragliding? Google it. Parkour is a great way for a 14 y/o to get his thrills, and it is absolutely free.

One thing I do know is that punishing him in any manner will not help. Really, truly, it will not help.


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ChorisOnoma
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27 Sep 2016, 1:21 pm

Spiderpig wrote:
That kind of "empathy" is best taught with tough love: you violate someone's boundaries, I violate the integrity of your bones.
Beating the crap out him, breaking his bones, as you suggest will not teach him anything. This has nothing to do with empathy or the lack of it.
He has plenty of that, the absolute vast majority of kids and adults on the Spectrum has an abundance of empathy.


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Looking or asking for a cure for Autism is like looking or asking for a cure for being Black.
---
there, their, they're - learn the difference goddammit!