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Tuesday, January 14, 2014

There is Hope!

When we are in the the trenches of raising our Aspergers children, we run into difficult periods.  This can be said of raising any child, especially during the teen years.  As parents we wonder, will we EVER get through this? Will this child ever be a person I can stand to be around for more than 15 minutes?  Maybe that's just me.  It's probably you too if you're willing to admit it. It may sound terrible, but to be brutally honest, the teen years are rough.

There are times, when I just want to hide in my bathroom with the door locked, with my laptop and a glass of wine.  Yes. In the bathroom.  You see my bathroom is inside of my bedroom. I can lock my bedroom door and then lock the bathroom door for extra security.  I turn on the fan and wallah! I can't hear a thing. TMI? Oh well. 

Somedays, I don't have the energy for another fight.   Like when they are talking a million words per minute, without ceasing.  When they come across as rude, disrespectful,  know-it-alls.  I know it's not really about me.  It's about the pain that they are experiencing.  It's about what's going on inside their own heads.  But it feels like it's about me and it hurts.  Sometimes, the barrage of negativity and the woe is me, my life sucks, mentality is too much to deal with.

I'm in the throes of this with Blue.  Finally, in this 18th year of life I see in Red,  there is hope. Though he has a long way to go to really grow up ...geez he has come such a long way!

If you've been following my blog for a while, you got to know my friend and fellow Aspergers mama Kathleen when she wrote  "If You Really Knew Me" A guest Post  back in September of 2013. She is a mother of three handsome, amazingly unique young men with different abilities. They are ages, 13, 15, and 20. Her boys have an alphabet soup of diagnoses.

A few days ago, she wrote a lovingly honest update on her son 15 year-old son Jay who has Aspergers. I think is worthy of sharing with all of you.  Without further ado...here she is.

By Kathleen Johnson

I have been bragging on my 15 year-old son sooooooo much lately.  Seriously, things were soooo bad not that long ago and now they are sooo good now, that I can't help but be in a state of amazement. He is definitely growing up. I never thought I would be able to genuinely say, I enjoy his company, but I do! 

For me, with 3 boys, my favorite child changes from time to time. At any time I usually can't get enough of one of them and my Aspie is that one these days! He watches his shows with me in my room, he is chatty Kathy with me. He has been waking up on his own and in a super mood. 

I have been telling him for years his hands are super rough (like he works for a living with them). He is lotioning them regularly because he said he doesn't want his future wife to have to deal with it.  He has been brushing his teeth and showering regularly without being prompted.  His gross hygienic habits seem to be a thing of the past. He has been keeping his room clean and has been generally cooperative with me and his father.  This is very out of ordinary. He isn't as overbearing with his older brother. They can have a regular conversation without anyone flipping out. That's huge!

Also, I asked him if he plans on going to college. He said of course. When asked for what, he said homicide detective or forensic anthropologist. I told him with his mental health history, I'm  not sure of homicide detective is an option.  He told me he had spoken with the career counselor at school (his special needs school) and she said that should not prevent him.


I am so flippin happy for his growth I just can't begin to convey to you all how far he has come!!! There is hope! 

But I have to say this... it wasn't until after the worst of puberty was behind us and equally important, as I see it is that he has been off all pharmaceuticals since May 2013. On Amino Acid Therapy and orthomolecular medicine (supplements) only.

I feel like I can breathe...like the feeling you get when you put the hyperactive baby down for the nap and they actually fall asleep.



Jay
Editorial Note: Amino Acid and orthomolecular supplement therapy may not work for everyone.  I tried this recently with Blue and because he is in the middle of puberty, and with his body's current chemistry,  aminos alone did not work for him. I will say that it is definitely worth investigating.

I hope that Kathleen's update brings you hope for your child.

~Karen