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[#] Sun Aug 29 2021 12:31:56 MST from ParanoidDelusions <paranoiddelusions@wallofhate.com>

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So, again - if you want to drop to Michelle that I have an autistic daughter and have spoken about the difficulties and trials we had navigating raising our daughter, and that I'd be willing to talk to her about it - that might be a way to start. Not that you're getting involved - that you don't care either way - but you just thought you would put it on the table. Do just that - and if she calls, I'll talk to her, if she doesn't... that is what it is...


Maybe if your local support network is failing you - speak to others. Autism Center in Phoenix can't help you directly - but maybe they have networks up there that they can put you in touch with that would do better than whoever you're seeing now.

Billion Strong is a national organization for people with all kinds of disabilities. Maybe they have local resources.

If something isn't working for you - don't necessarily stick with it and hope it will improve - look for alternatives that can help you with the things you do want to stick with and see improve.

I mean, otherwise, it feels like just delaying the inevitable, right?


Sun Aug 29 2021 10:16:25 MST from Jerry Moore

Great advice, but not easily taken and accepted around here. They HAVE tried outside assistance and found the system to be inefficient and unwilling to help, under the pressure of this Covid thing. They have both seen therapists - Tom gave up on therapy, while I think that Michelle is still going, unless she missed two sessions in a row, in which case they drop you from the system and you have to call them and start all over again. The social worker who was supposed to help Landon failed to show up on time, which resulted in my daughter and her husband not being home because of the need to get their kids to school, which is still happening here except for periods of a couple of weeks at a time, when someone has tested positive for Covid. Since each of the kids attend a different school, it's a bit more complicated getting them there and back, and takes both parents working together. Unfortunately, the social worker stopped trying because of the "missed" appointments resulting from the above, and Tom reacted in his usual teenage attitude, with "Fuck them, they're not coming on time and then blaming us!" -  and when Michelle tried to get the system started again, his loud, profane comments in the background when she was on the phone have made things more difficult. I understand your advice, but the problem is really that we're not all on the same page, here. There has been too much hate and mistrust generated, and the resulting attitudes are hard to get around. Landon's attitude and reaction is much like you described, Michelle's is she could do it alone if Tom would just go away, Tom's is authoritarian but weak and laced with profanity, which he is unwilling or unable to control. He acts like he thinks he's God, but has no follow-up except for threats of violence, which upset Michelle and cause immediate arguments. As for me, I've been told by both parents to stay out of it. My daughter and I have an agreement regarding politics, religion and child care to disagree and not talk about it, because we both get upset. I left Layton out because he is the one who seems to be coping with things the best, and not contributing to the problems. Other than Layton, we all seem to be at fault in some way, and we all seem to feel powerless to do anything to make things better. Oh, Layton is in the first grade, this year, and Landon is still in the Head Start program, so both have the opportunity to socialise with kids of their age. I suspect that Landon gets firmer control at school than at home, since he doesn't hit his classmates like he does his brother. At home, Layton sounds off periodically that Landon is pulling his hair or hitting him or trying to bite him. Michelle then talks to Landon, telling him that he shouldn't be hurting his brother, which sometimes results in Landon biting or kicking his mother. I'm just the observer here, unable to do anything but this effort to document things. Of course, it's all from my point of view, so take it as you will.



 



[#] Sun Sep 05 2021 17:08:47 MST from Jerry Moore

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I had a brief talk with my daughter and told her that we have a conversation going and that she was invited to read what had transpired so far. She said that she'd like to do that, but didn't have the time to read it all directly from my tablet, so I should forward it all to her in an email, which I have done. Now I'm waiting for for her to find the time to read over it. Meanwhile, the shit is in the fan here most of the time. Today I heard her and her husband having a loud discussion of our overall situation here, and she was despairing of what to do about me if we lost our apartment here, which is still a possibility, since the courts decided that she government can't stop landlords from evicting tenants, now. They don't seem to have an answer, and neither do I.

That discussion either paused or ended, and now I'm hearing sounds of Tom interacting with his sons.

I really don't have an answer, and it worries me. If my recent surgery had not gone well, I might have been hospitalized, or died, which would have solved the problem (at least, for me), but it went quite well as an inpatient procedure, and I'm feeling physically much better than I have for quite a while. If I had gone to the hospital because, problems, then I might have been able to transfer to a local rehab hospital and get the government to cover me staying there indefinitely, but you could say that I had the bad luck to have had good with the operation. Now, I'm just waiting to see what happens. Sometimes there just isn't a solution to a problem, and, honestly, I never expected to live this long. I'm also waiting for Michelle to find the time to read over the massive text file I sent her. Depending on how she reacts to it, you may hear from her before I do, since she could decide to call you and ask for advice. . .or she may just not find the time. The ball is in her court, now, as far as the care of my autistic grandson goes.



[#] Mon Sep 06 2021 08:50:02 MST from ParanoidDelusions <paranoiddelusions@wallofhate.com>

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Well, maybe even reading it will help. Help know that this isn't something unusual to experience, that the stress, regret and uncertainty and second-guessing oneself in this kind of situation is natural - and that it IS manageable and that there is assistance out there.

The big take away for me is that traditional parenting methods don't work with autists. We struggled with our kid until her Sophomore year, when she self-diagnosed and sought a clinical diagnosis and we started to understand that it wasn't just that she was willful or manipulative. It became more apparent as she grew older that while she was high functioning at many things - there were basic things that she was developmentally disabled at. She couldn't make herself a PB&J at 15 years old - like, she couldn't assemble her own lunch. Getting too and from school less than a mile away on a bike was a struggle for her. Directions - like, if she got lost - the odds of her turning a mild issue into a MAJOR crisis were HUGE. She had an irrational phobia of flying insects that would send her into full blown panic attacks. This was actually the point where we realized there was an issue. We had a foreign exchange student - and we had already noticed the major developmental difference between that exchange student and our daughter - the social developmental delay. We were in Yosemite, and we were walking to a vista - and there were a lot of meatbees flying around the garbage cans - and they're a pretty aggressive, menacing flying insect - but everyone knows they're just annoying. We're all walking to the view, and our kid is having a total meltdown. Like, I *recognized* it wasn't just discomfort of phobia - it was a panic attack. Debilitating anxiety. Took her back to the car and let her calm down there.

And, upon a clinical diagnosis, I had to live with the regret of all the things I had been fucking up for the previous 15 years as a parent. Trying to be a good parent, trying to do the things I *thought* a good parent did to make their child a functioning part of society - I was doing more damage than good. Just like it sounds like your son-in-law is doing. It isn't his fault... unless someone tells him that he needs to change his approach and he remains stubborn and adamant that his way is the BEST way.

Since we found out - our kid has grown so much. She is away at college in Chicago right now. She has a Vespa and she drives to friends houses miles away. She talks about moving out for good, and soon. She is interested in cooking for herself. She navigates Chicago, and its train systems, and its suburbs, by herself. She shops for herself. She is a fully functioning, independent adult. She still has challenges. She still has developmental disabilities, but she is aware of them, has had assistance in learning coping strategies, and *we* understand and are better able to support her.

If we hadn't changed our approach, we would have a 20 year old arrested mentally at about age 12 living at home with no hopes, no plans, no sense of independence or self worth and no chance of ever overcoming that.

We were at *war* as a family between about 4 and 15 - and it was almost all related to our Kid's issue and our inability to recognize it and find strategies to overcome it. I mean, my daughter and wife were at war, and I was in between, like the US trying to broker a peace between the Middle East and Israel. Like the US - I'd have my own swings from being accommodating and conciliatory to being angry and taking zero-tolerance hardline positions. Nothing worked. 

I hated meal time, I hated clothes shopping, I hated getting dressed for school in the morning, I hated travel, I hated family leisure events, I hated birthdays, I hated all of it - and I was very angry at my wife and my daughter for making things so damn difficult. Neither one would budge, and I couldn't find any strategies to get one to compromise with the other. For 11 years.

Then she got clinically diagnosed, we started getting some expert advice, we started educating and learning *ourselves* - and it was like the clouds parted and things haven't been *perfect* - but they've been so much better.

I'm not real open or much about being public about things like this. I'm not big on the people who are preachy about "raising their autistic child," on social media. It seems like they're looking for recognition and a medal.

I wouldn't speak up on this issue - but it sounds like your family needs help with this. It is out there.




Sun Sep 05 2021 17:08:47 MST from Jerry Moore

I had a brief talk with my daughter and told her that we have a conversation going and that she was invited to read what had transpired so far. She said that she'd like to do that, but didn't have the time to read it all directly from my tablet, so I should forward it all to her in an email, which I have done. Now I'm waiting for for her to find the time to read over it. Meanwhile, the shit is in the fan here most of the time. Today I heard her and her husband having a loud discussion of our overall situation here, and she was despairing of what to do about me if we lost our apartment here, which is still a possibility, since the courts decided that she government can't stop landlords from evicting tenants, now. They don't seem to have an answer, and neither do I.

That discussion either paused or ended, and now I'm hearing sounds of Tom interacting with his sons.

I really don't have an answer, and it worries me. If my recent surgery had not gone well, I might have been hospitalized, or died, which would have solved the problem (at least, for me), but it went quite well as an inpatient procedure, and I'm feeling physically much better than I have for quite a while. If I had gone to the hospital because, problems, then I might have been able to transfer to a local rehab hospital and get the government to cover me staying there indefinitely, but you could say that I had the bad luck to have had good with the operation. Now, I'm just waiting to see what happens. Sometimes there just isn't a solution to a problem, and, honestly, I never expected to live this long. I'm also waiting for Michelle to find the time to read over the massive text file I sent her. Depending on how she reacts to it, you may hear from her before I do, since she could decide to call you and ask for advice. . .or she may just not find the time. The ball is in her court, now, as far as the care of my autistic grandson goes.



 



[#] Wed Sep 22 2021 04:03:22 MST from TheDave

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My other brother is on the spectrum.  My parents know this but they still try to treat him like a "normal" person, which he has never been.  James acts like an emotional magnifying mirror.  Whatever you give him, he gives back around 1.5 times.  So my parents wouldn't understand the rages he got into when they spoke sternly to him.  I learned to just be upbeat with him all the time and that's never failed me yet.

I can't speak to all of the issues you're going through, but I'm another person who can attest that it's not easy to figure out how to act with someone on the spectrum, but it is worth the effort.



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