After reading a blog post from Autism Connect (see link below) about the signs, symptoms and treatment, I immediately had recollections of experience with my first cousin Jerry. We are six months apart in age and to my knowledge, he now lives in a group residence in Pennsylvania. I’ll tell you more about that but here is the link: https://autismconnectassociation.wordpress.com/2019/09/04/effective-treatment-options-for-autism/ . Here is an excerpt
Autism or autism spectrum disorder related to the brain, impacting the way an individual communicates and socializes with others. It causes problems in social interaction too. The term “spectrum” in autism refers to the wide range of symptoms that varies from person to person in its severity. Autism sets in early childhood, causing hindrance in […
In terms of my own recollection: I recall a hot summer day. It was visiting day at camp. A dog was barking and Jerry was inconsolable. His behaviors were those characterized in the youtube video link below. He was yelling, rocking from side to side and his hands were shaking. We walked away from the dog and up a dusty dirt hill. The behavior finally stopped; but, I have no idea how and it seemed like hours during which I tried to help him calm. Nothing seemed to help. I felt awful because I was unable to help him.
I know now that he was stimming/ˈstimiNG/. Oxford dictionary indicates that this noun is defined as a behavior consisting of repetitive actions or movements of a type that may be displayed by people with developmental disorders, most typically autistic spectrum disorders; self-stimulation.” stimming was part of her coping mechanism”
**the presence of this behavior may not necessarily mean that the individual has autism
Understanding Sensory Integration was something that could have helped me at the moment with Jerry. The concept had not yet realized; but now I can share this.
Jean Ayres gives me that insight. On Wikipedia https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anna_Jean_Ayres work is described. “Building on the work of Charles S. Sherrington and others, she began developing the theory and associated intervention techniques of sensory integration in the 1950s by examining the relationship between the brain and behavior. By the 1960s, Dr. Ayres recognized and described “hidden disabilities” or “dysfunction in sensory integrative processes” (Ayres, 1963, 1968), which she later referred to as sensory integrative dysfunction.” I often refer others to her text that describes the signs, symptoms, and treatment of this. Of course, you can get it on Amazon https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0874244374/ref=dbs_a_def_rwt_bibl_vppi_i0 I sometimes suggest this book to parents as well as https://www.amazon.com/Out-Sync-Child-Recognizing-Processing/dp/0399531653/ref=asc_df_0399531653/?tag=hyprod-20&linkCode=df0&hvadid=312021428838&hvpos=1o1&hvnetw=g&hvrand=13606979976005712119&hvpone=&hvptwo=&hvqmt=&hvdev=c&hvdvcmdl=&hvlocint=&hvlocphy=9067609&hvtargid=pla-627211769712&psc=1&tag=&ref=&adgrpid=63669393313&hvpone=&hvptwo=&hvadid=312021428838&hvpos=1o1&hvnetw=g&hvrand=13606979976005712119&hvqmt=&hvdev=c&hvdvcmdl=&hvlocint=&hvlocphy=9067609&hvtargid=pla-627211769712
Empowerment and Knowledge That You Are Not Alone:
The receipt of a diagnosis of Autism can be devastating for families. In my work, I see families mourning the fact that they will have to be dealing with a lifelong problem and with an uncertain road ahead of them. You are not alone and I wanted to give you resources so that you can do something for yourself – connect with others and become an advocate for the person about whom you have concerns. Some of these are in the links are to programs on the NYC area; but, I am positive that there are similar programs to this in other areas. Check online:
- The Parents League of New York https://www.parentsleague.org/. Described in the website this organization was “Founded in 1913 as a coalition of parents and independent and private schools, the Parents League of New York supports families and children by providing a broad range of educational and parenting resources.
- Facebook has groups connect with others in your geographic location supports families and children by providing a broad range of educational and parenting resources.
- Autism Speaks https://www.autismspeaks.org is another national organization
- In my area, IncludeNYC https://www.includenyc.org/resources/ is a wonderful organization providing both workshops on topics important for those with Autism and other special needs. I am sure that there are similar programs in other areas.
- Autism Society of America https://www.autism-society.org/about-the-autism-society/ https://www.autism-society.org/ Thanks to the work of my uncle and other parents who gathered to work towards the development of this national organization was formed.