Tag Archives: troubled teens.

Asperger’s Syndrome: What is it, exactly?

What is Asperger’s syndrome?

This article is taken from webmd.com

Asperger’s syndrome is a developmental disorder that makes it very hard to interact with other people. Your child may find it hard to make friends because he or she is socially awkward.

People with Asperger’s syndrome have some traits of autism. For example, they may have poor social skills, prefer routine, and not like change. But unlike those who have autism, children with Asperger’s syndrome usually start to talk before 2 years of age, when speech normally starts to develop.

Asperger?s syndrome is a lifelong condition, but symptoms tend to improve over time. Adults with this condition can learn to understand their own strengths and weaknesses. And they can improve their social skills.

Both Asperger’s syndrome and autism belong to the group of disorders called pervasive developmental disorders (pdd).

What causes Asperger’s syndrome?

The exact cause of Asperger’s syndrome is not known. And there is no known way to prevent it. It tends to run in families. So researchers are doing studies to look for a genetic cause.

What are the symptoms?

Asperger’s syndrome is usually noticed at age 3 or later. Symptoms vary, so no two children are the same. Children with Asperger?s:

  • Have a very hard time relating to others. It doesn’t mean that they avoid social contact. But they lack instincts and skills to help them express their thoughts and feelings and notice others’ feelings.
  • Like fixed routines. Change is hard for them.
  • May not recognize verbal and nonverbal cues or understand social norms. For example, they may stare at others, not make eye contact, or not know what personal space means.
  • May have speech that?s flat and hard to understand because it lacks tone, pitch, and accent. Or they may have a formal style of speaking that?s advanced for their age.
  • May lack coordination; have unusual facial expressions, body postures, and gestures; or be somewhat clumsy.
  • May have poor handwriting or have trouble with other motor skills, such as riding a bike.
  • May have only one or a few interests, or they may focus intensely on a few things. For instance, they may show an unusual interest in snakes or star names or may draw very detailed pictures.
  • May be bothered by loud noises, lights, or strong tastes or textures.

How is Asperger?s syndrome diagnosed?

If you are concerned about your child?s behavior or communication style, talk to your child?s doctor. He or she will ask you about your child?s development and ask if other people have noticed your child?s social problems.

The doctor may refer you to a specialist to confirm or rule out Asperger?s syndrome. The specialist may test your child?s learning style, speech and language, IQ, social and motor skills, and more.

http://www.webmd.com/brain/autism/tc/aspergers-syndrome-topic-overview

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The How-To Behind Friendship (Not Just For Aspies!)

Making friends and keeping friends: Research confirms these are two areas that seem to seriously challenge children with Asperger’s.

 So says Anna Matchneva, a lecturer and one-on-one counsellor who works closely with children on the autism spectrum and their parents.

Rejected:  This is a category of children Anna often sees.  She is not referring to parental neglect, but to the playground or social setting.

The rejected child is one who tries to join a group but is denied access.

Mostly we will never know why some people choose not to be friends with us.  But totally there are things we can do differently.

For instance, we might approach a group and start talking about whatever is on our mind when really?  We need to listen.  Try to pick up on what the others are saying.  Take a little time to formulate a brief remark in line with their conversation.  Don’t try to work in your current interest.  Stick to their conversation.

But hey, that’s easy to learn, right?  Just take a little time before speaking.  Listen.  Try to understand what they’re talking about.  Not just what they’re saying, but what they mean.

 We Aspies get a little starved for attention sometimes and that can make us talk too much, too loud, too soon.  But it’s easy enough to get over those habits.

I know myself, I have to be careful not to dive hell bent for leather into a topic, completely overwhelming and boring the people who were kind enough to invite me into the group.

And anyway, not every group wants another member.  They may be having a private conversation.  They may believe they have nothing in common with you, and therefore, not see any point in trying to make friends.  Maybe they are happy just as they are.  Then you need to find someone else to talk with.

Remember, your focus can be a very good thing, even if others don’t want to share in it.  It’s similar to the single-mindedness that made Taylor Swift a star and Bill Gates a computer mogul.

Try to listen first.  Take a minute or two to find out what the group and the conversation is about.  And when you do speak, smile, keep a neutral tone, and above all, be brief!

And please note–Aspies aren’t the only people in the world who have trouble making and keeping friends.  Lots of people do!

Yours truly,

Margaret Jean

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Rap Tune About Bullying Comes To Surprising Conclusion.

Hi!  This blog site is to talk about current issues associated with my book, UNFORGIVING, the Memoir of an Asperger Teen.  The book is set in the 1960’s and relives the summer I won a part in a National Film Board short. 
 
How does it feel to go from every day rural life to the glamour of being chauffered to and from work every day?   How does one differentiate between past abusive and present normal relationships?  Where do I turn for help?
 
Since bullying is always an issue with Asperger kids, a good way to start this blog is with this video about bullying.
Don’t be put off by the initial verses.  The rapper comes around to an excellent solution for kids who are being bullied.
I hope you enjoy this work…Where do kids like me go? http://youtu.be/CCjQCpN48b4
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