Does parenting style affect autistic children as it does NTs

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Calcifer
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11 May 2013, 6:27 pm

How was your parent(s) when you were a kid?

Just as a reference. I'm going through the motions of diagnosis, not really sure that I have AS or whatever.

I'm seeing a new therapist type person who deals regularly with autistic kids, and she told me one of the characteristics of autistic/asperger children is that they tend to be aggressive. By what my mother has told me, I was more reclusive than outwardly aggressive.
So I started thinking, and I was interested in how parenting style, or the general disposition of a parent could affect the behavior of an autistic child as it does NT children.

For example, my mom was very strict when I was younger (as she's gotten older, she's able to tolerate more behavior). She was also super scary, and she wasn't afraid to hit me if I did something she didn't allow. She also yelled a lot.

How would a more stricter type of parenting style affect an autistic spectrum child?

I hope this makes sense.



lelia
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11 May 2013, 6:32 pm

Parenting styles affect all of us as children. I was so fortunate to have an accepting mother who gently explained to me all my social errors and why they were errors and then explained what I should have done. I thinks that is why I was able to "pass" as a weird person instead of as a brain-damaged person.



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11 May 2013, 6:43 pm

"Strict" backfired on me. I knew I couldn't control my AS actions, therefore, I was being punished for something that I couldn't control. That causes resentment. MAJOR resentment. My "disobedience" got worse, and along w/ it, their "punishment". It just escalated in a snowball effect until I was scarred for life.


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redrobin62
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11 May 2013, 6:46 pm

All I experienced was pain, misery and suffering as a child.



Anomiel
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11 May 2013, 6:57 pm

"Tend to be aggressive"? :lol: Why yes, focusing on your interests and such is very aggressive...
Is this a case of mislabeled meltdowns and misinterpreted social inappropriateness?

The ones that do get labeled as aggressive in the actual official literature (which you might want to check up on) are those of us with lots of co-morbids. Like MCDD people (which is just a "collection diagnosis" for autism + lots of other stuff that causes them to behave a bit different than the straight up aspies...)



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11 May 2013, 7:07 pm

Calcifer wrote:
How would a more stricter type of parenting style affect an autistic spectrum child?


      Since people on the spectrum have a tendency towards cooperation and loyalty, 'behavior choosing' is not the issue.
      In other words they're more likely to choose cooperative behavior.
      Therefore (in my opinion) strict has nothing to do with it. Consistent and reality based outcomes are more important in my opinion.


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lelia
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11 May 2013, 7:28 pm

Reading about many of the parents of those on WrongPlanet makes me weep, so many of them were abusive.



MjrMajorMajor
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11 May 2013, 7:32 pm

I agree that firm and consistent is not the same as strict. I still have the occasional nightmare of my father's voice yelling at me, and the sound shakes the world like a never-ending sonic boom.
I have raised my kids with structure, leniency, and clear expectations. They seem to be growing up with a sense of self assurance and security. I'm not their "buddy", but it would kill me for them to see either parent as a source of fear or hostility.



League_Girl
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11 May 2013, 7:34 pm

I was spanked, grounded, had privileges taken away and dessert, went to bed hungry for refusing to eat, lost snack time, sent to my room, sent to time out, had my mouth slapped, not allowed to do anything else until I did what my mom wanted me to do such as taking my clean clothes upstairs to my room. I honestly thought parenting was all about controlling your children and punishing them just to punish them and yell just to yell, and hitting just to hit. I was always spanking other kids at home ad my brothers and I slapped my brother's mouth for calling me a poo poo head and told him it was a terrible word to say echoing my mother about the f word when she slapped me. I also took things away from my brothers and made things off limits to them just like mom did to me.

But Mom also talked to me about my behavior and always drew pictures when something would happen and she also had to figure out why I was doing a certain behavior before she did anything about it. She and dad also had to be very careful what they told me because I would twist it around. One time my brother grabbed me so I hit him or whatever I did and Mom had to talk to me about it and my defense was he wouldn't lt go of my shirt so I hit him to get him off me. So she role played with my brother and she was holding his rubber bat and told my brother to grab her and he did, the way he grabbed me, and Mom handed him back his bat. She was showing me why he grabbed me because I had his bat and what i got out of it was if I wanted something and the person had it, I grab them to scare them and they will give it to me. But I had missed the point what my mother was telling me but she was justifying my brother's behavior acting like what he did was okay and I don't think he got in trouble for it but it taught me if you want something and the person has it, grab them and scare them to get it from them, be aggressive. I didn't understand rules for different age groups and whatever was okay for a four year old to do and get away with it, I thought it was okay to do. It was as if little kids were a bad influence for me because they taught me the wrong behavior.

I know now parents don't punish their kids to punish them or take stuff away just for the sake of it or spank them just for the heck of it. I know it's all done for discipline and it's not like they dictate them and make unreasonable rules and be all controlling. But it felt that way when I was a kid so I thought people had kids so they could have something to control and punish and watch them suffer. I was in my teens when I didn't have that concept anymore.

My mom did most of the parenting and consequences and my dad did little of it because he was always working. He worked at home and in his car and he still watched us if mom was away and took us out. I don't even remember him having a day off unless mom was sick in bed or when we were on a trip or went somewhere for fun or when it was a holiday. He also cursed when mad and slammed things when mad or something tossed stuff and sometimes hit when angry but he was still a good man. He ran his own business so he took days off whenever he wanted and could go on vacation whenever he wanted and mom was just a stay at home mother and then went back to work as a teacher's aid when I was in 5th grade when all us kids were in school full day.

We also went to places a lot and went on family trips and also ate out and went to movies and to malls or bookstores and we also did family time.

My mom didn't yell much compared to some moms. I had a couple friends whose parents yelled all the time and I was so glad mine didn't that often. She also wasn't strict compared to some parents. I knew a girl in my high school who couldn't play video games unless there was snow on the ground, I knew a family who did not allow their kids to play inside if it was nice out, I had two best friends who would always get locked out of their homes because their parents and grandparents didn't want them around, I knew a few families who did not allow their kids in their dining room and living room in their home, I have heard of some parents who will not let their kid watch TV at all and they restrict it nearly to zero so my parent's were pretty loose. At times she would make us play outside if we were in the house all day long and never went out to play, she would only take away video games if she felt we have been playing them too much and never did anything else, same with TV. I have known several families in my neighborhood who would not allow kids in their home on a nice day when they had friends over, my mom wasn't like that and I knew one family who never want other peoples kids over and it would be rare when they would allow it. So my mom wasn't that tough as I have made her out to be in the past. she didn't restrict activities or what rooms we could be in at home, she allowed kids over and let us play inside even if it was nice out.

I was also taken to doctors growing up and therapy and she gave me speech therapy at home and worked with me on seeing the big picture.

I think the only effects they did would be me repeating their mistakes and faults they did as parents which is pretty typical and it takes work to break the cycle when you have kids.


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chlov
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12 May 2013, 6:03 am

I don't know.

My parents have always been quite supportive.
I've had people there to support me during all my childhood, and my childhood wasn't bad (I've never been bullied or anything).

But my parents weren't able to influence me with their ideas.

Everyone else I know was influenced during their childhood/teen years by their parents' ideas, but I wasn't.
In fact, my way of thinking and my ideas are totally different from my parents'.
People have told me that they ask themselves how can I be their daughter at times.



Kafke
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12 May 2013, 6:23 am

My parents had a "love me but I better do what I'm told" type of attitude. When I was younger, I wasn't allowed to leave the table until no food was on my plate. Being someone who hates certain types of food, I sometimes sat there until I fell asleep.

Some spanking/hitting occurred when I was young, but not as much as my siblings.

Most of the time the punishment was psychological. Take away toys, games, controllers, etc. Lots of yelling.

They were very strict for a long time. I had a certain bed time (mostly 9, but gradually got later). I'd get in trouble for getting less than straight A's.

I eventually learned all the "rules" and followed them pretty well, so that type of stuff ended up not happening as much. Still makes me a bit resentful though. I'm glad I finally moved away. Once I graduate college I hope to move even further though.


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12 May 2013, 6:24 am

Calcifer wrote:
How was your parent(s) when you were a kid?

Just as a reference. I'm going through the motions of diagnosis, not really sure that I have AS or whatever.

I'm seeing a new therapist type person who deals regularly with autistic kids, and she told me one of the characteristics of autistic/asperger children is that they tend to be aggressive. By what my mother has told me, I was more reclusive than outwardly aggressive.
So I started thinking, and I was interested in how parenting style, or the general disposition of a parent could affect the behavior of an autistic child as it does NT children.

For example, my mom was very strict when I was younger (as she's gotten older, she's able to tolerate more behavior). She was also super scary, and she wasn't afraid to hit me if I did something she didn't allow. She also yelled a lot.

How would a more stricter type of parenting style affect an autistic spectrum child?

I hope this makes sense.


Some autistic children are aggressive not all. Also, the aggression often depends very much on the environment (I don't mean necessarily parental effects I mean sensory issues etc.).

Show your therapist this list by Lorna Wing et al (and I hope she is aware of the differences between autistic children as it sounds dangerously like she has some outdated and cliched views):

Quote:
Aloof

Most frequent subtype among the lower functioning. Most high-functioning in this group are a mixture of aloof and passive. Limited language use. Copes with life using autistic routines. Most are recognised in childhood. Independence is difficult to achieve. There may be loneliness and sadness beneath the aloofness. Rain Man is an excellent example of this subgroup.

Passive

Often amiable, gentle, and easily led. Those passive rather than aloof from infancy may fit AS. More likely than the aloof to have had a mainstream education, and their psych skill profiles are less uneven. Social approaches passively accepted (little response or show of feelings). Characteristic autistic egocentricity less obvious in this group than in others. Activities are limited and repetitive, but less so than other autistics. Can react with unexpected anger or distress. Recognition of their autism depends more on observing the absence of the social and creative aspects of normal development than the presence of positive abnormalities. The general amenability is an advantage in work, and they are reliable, but sometimes their passivity and naivete can cause great problems. If undiagnosed, parents and teachers may be disappointed they cannot keep a job at the level predicted from their schoolwork.

Active-but-odd

Can fall in any of the other groups in early childhood. Some show early developmental course of Kanner's, some show AS. Some have the characteristic picture of higher visuospatial abilities, others have better verbal scores (mainly due to wide vocabulary and memory for facts). May be specific learning disorders (e.g., numerical). School placement often difficult. They show social naivete, odd, persistent approaches to others, and are uncooperative in uninteresting tasks. Diagnosis often missed. Tend to look at people too long and hard. Circumscribed interests in subjects are common.

Stilted

Few, if any clues to the underlying subtle handicap upon first meeting. The features of AS are particularly frequent. Early histories vary. Normal range of ability with some peaks of performance. Polite and conventional. Manage well at work. Sometimes pompous and long-winded style of speech. Problems arise in family relationships, where spontaneity and empathy are required. Poor judgement as to the relative importance of different demands on their time. Characteristically pursue interests to the exclusion of everything and everyone else. May have temper tantrums or aggression if routine broken at home, but are polite at work. Diagnosis very often missed. Most attend mainstream schools. Independence achieved in most cases. This group shades into the eccentric end of normality.


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