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AS_mom
Snowy Owl
Snowy Owl

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Joined: 1 Dec 2010
Age: 61
Gender: Female
Posts: 139
Location: Kelowna, Canada

01 Jan 2011, 2:05 am

I think if you are talking about children and teenagers and you are dealings with a number in your practice forming a social group would be off benefit. My son is 13 and clearly knows he is different in how he thinks and relates to peers. He currently has online friends only and the great thing about a social group would be being able to relate to other kids that may have similar interests and shared difficulties. Being able to provide a safe environment and some social skills would allow for increased confidence in communicating with others.

Recently only identifying myself with having AS and not knowing why I struggled so much as a child and couldn't relate to my family or make friends my desire is to give complete understanding to both my children of their disabilities but more importantly of their gifts.

There do not seems to be many professionals who understand and from my own personal experience I grew tired of trying to exlain myself in detail and gave up. I was also met with the view that one day I would be normal and function in the world as my therapist felt I should which invalidated my feelings of who I am.

So for me key to your practice would be for you to allow your young clients (and son) to feel validated and accepted for who they are. For teenagers personally I would work towards using their special interests as areas that may turn into a job/career. My own interest in computers early on worked into a highly specialized job in the computer industry. Many years later I have gone in the direction of working with children with a variety of learning disabilities.

If you have not come across it Tony Attwood's book The Complete Guide to Aspergers Syndrome is a great source of information. It also helped me understand the differences between male and female Aspie's so I can better help my son.