Friday, May 10, 2013

What I learned in therapy

One of the many things that has been a true blessing since our move has been finding a wonderful psychologist. She has spent the last 15 years working with children on the spectrum. She has a true understanding of how these kiddos think, feel, and act. She is also a wonderful resource as to what we can expect in the years to come. She is great because she is very direct with him and does not pull any punches. She lets him know when he is being rude or out of line. She is also compassionate when she sees that he is struggling. God Bless this woman for having the patience and love for these children and for making it her life's passion to do this work every day!

I sent out these tweets and posted on my Sassy Aspie Mom Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/pages/Sassy-Aspie-Mom/117289368463117) yesterday about Hunter's psychologists appointment.

I learned some very important information from my son during his therapy session today.

Important fact #1 We are rich! WTH...and no one told me!! Whoopee!!! (Apparently, wearing the right socks to school makes him rich!)

Important fact #2  He has memorized an entire "Your mama is so fat that..." joke book and has retained almost every damn joke!! (This also includes "Your mama is so ugly" jokes which makes it all the more fun! He told about 10 of them during the session which was mighty embarrassing!)

Important fact #3 I found out at therapy today..the 6th grade boys play "spin the bottle at lunch". The good news is that it's not "that" spin the bottle! (Wow, you should have seen the look on my face when he started on this topic!)

Important fact #4 His little brother is annoying...shocker!!! (I didn't need a therapy session for that one!)

Yesterday's therapy was quite interesting in so many ways. It was almost tiring because he just didn't want to talk and he was trying to avoid subjects. Even in his silliness,  I actually learned something very interesting from this amazingly patient woman. She told me that it is very common for children on the spectrum to struggle with therapy because the therapist is telling them so much information about themselves. From the child on the spectrum's prospective, this person, that they don't really know, is pointing out many things about themselves that they never realized. They start thinking, "How does this person know so much about me that I don't know about myself." Therefore, they start acting out or saying odd things or showing off to distract the attention away from themselves. He actually said  to her towards the end of the session, "I don't feel comfortable with you knowing so much about me!" It broke my heart.

Therapy is hard for every human being. It is raw and sometimes painful. For Hunter, I think it is hard because he is being exposed to how other people see him! He is realizing that most people function so differently in society, and that he has to learn a new way of thinking and behaving in order to be accepted. As his mom, it is my job to continue to support him as he walks through this tough journey. It is not easy folks...I may need a few of those jokes! He's got plenty!