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PostPosted: Wed Mar 16, 2011 6:24 pm 
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In my family, we have several cases of autism; I'm one of them. One thing you should probably know about autism is that the cases you see in "awareness" ads often give the impression that autistic kids can't learn; in reality, most of us can work; most of us will be semi-independent or completely independent as adults. So when I say "autism" I'm talking about the whole spectrum, not the stereotype. OK, enough background.

What I know about autism that relates to disaster preparedness is that it's very, very hard for autistic people, especially kids, to deal with changes and unexpected events. When I was a little girl, I remember repetitively running through what I was told would happen during a doctor's visit or an airplane flight, trying to get used to the idea. New things totally threw me off for days. Mom learned to explain to me exactly what was going to happen. I learned that the more information I had about things that might happen, the better I felt about them and the better I coped with them. I fell naturally into disaster preparedness. When I was fourteen I put together my first BOB, and used it and my bicycle to get away from my stepfather when he threatened my life.

It's very important to educate families who have autistic kids, as well as autistic adults, about getting ready for the possibilities of natural disasters and other unexpected events. In addition to all the usual reasons, autistic people may be more thrown off balance than typical folks when something of this sort happens. However--and here's the interesting thing--if properly prepared, we are often actually calmer than typical folks because we have gotten used to dealing with things that are unexpected and thus upsetting every day. When I had a car accident last winter, I didn't have any problems precisely because I had a plan for what I was going to do in that situation. To me, it was not too much worse than having a classes canceled or having to deal with a water leak in the bathroom. So there are big reasons to educate these people.

What would be your advice to these families? What's the best way to prepare both adults and children? Is there a way to "hook" families with autistic kids on the concept--if only to be sure their kids will be able to get through any emergencies?

Keep in mind:
--Autistic kids and adults may respond best to a variety of teaching methods, from picture schedules all the way up to college textbooks.
--These families are not into disaster preparedness generally. They may not even have a week's worth of food stored normally.
--Autism is often mistaken for something other than autism by police and rescue workers, including dangerous mistakes like, "He's on drugs," "He looks guilty," or, "He's going to attack me." Rescue workers may make the mistake of grabbing a touch-sensitive person, only to have them panic and struggle or run away.
--Autism is very common; current estimates for autism spectrum disorders place it at 1:100. Most of these will be independent as adults. Many cases in adults today are undetected because autism as few as twenty-five years ago was thought to be exclusively a severe condition.
--Autistic individuals often have sensory problems which can compound the problem of being out of their element, including sensitivity to lights, sounds, touch, smell, and temperature. However, they tend to be very unlikely to miss small details--a tendency which could save someone's life.
--Like any human being, autistics do best in difficult situations when they have a plan and a role. For example, as a child, I was given the task of getting my cat into her carrier during tornado warnings.

The reason I'm asking is that I'm hoping to write an article about this issue, and I'd like some input from people who know more about it than me.

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PostPosted: Wed Mar 16, 2011 8:38 pm 
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Wow! Temple Grandon has nothing on you!

Let me say that I have been a special education teacher and have working with children/adults with autism. What that really means is that every day I was learning from those in my charge.

I think one thing that would need to be said in regards to this topic is that autism is such a broad diagnosis. I worked with students (16-22 years old) that had limited abilities to cope with daily challenges, much less something extreme. I have had students sit on the sidewalk for hours engaged in self stimulation (get your mind out of the gutter guys,) or SIB (self injurious behavior). What triggered that behavior? Unclear. How to "fix it"? unknown. Did I have a profound sense of helplessness? you bet.

You are at one end of the spectrum while they are at the other. No answer(s) will satisfy all. An emergency situation where adaptation and fluid thinking are important would be very difficult for someone with autism.

For many the answer would be prep-drill-prep-drill. Be very specific!! "If you see flames or smell smoke or the smoke alarm goes off, go to this window, crawl out (model the behavior) and wait for me by that tree across the street." Model the behavior without adding any panic or fear to the drill. Use lots of praise and reinforcement. Practice Practice Practice!!!

Define what is the most important element for them. For some it would be the danger of getting separated from caregivers. "If you cannot see someone you know, what do you do?" (Stay put, blow your whistle!) For some it would be a way for them to stay calm, (In this bag are three things you really like. "We can play this CD of your favorite song all the way to Grandma's house," (the BOL). Plan for Meds. Plan for important foods (comfort foods prepped). Use picture labels for them to understand what a BOB is and when to use it. Use PECS to show what the items are what how to use them.

Maybe this will get you started thinking about best practices for you and your loved ones.


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 16, 2011 10:26 pm 
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PM sent with some of the things that keep me up at night about our situation, the state agency that I work for are freaks about client privacy.

But in my limited experience it all depends on the individual and their coping mechanisms. I think someone with an autistic family member would be very receptive to hearing about emergency preps. They know how seemingly little things can have huge effects on their loved one, it wouldnt take too many hints to get them thinking about how bad it could be during any kind of crisis.

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 17, 2011 2:31 pm 
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My eight year old is on the very high end of the spectrum, Aspergers I think. He is obsessed with sea creatures, handles change pretty well, but does like his routines.

I enrolled him with his younger brother in Cub Scouts so he can better learn to relate with others, recognize leaders and learn some outdoor skills.

Still coming to grips with the whole situation. Wife is up the river denile.

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 17, 2011 3:14 pm 
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The thing I would stress the most is safety. Things get much more dangerous in a disaster due to failed structures and infrastructure and there is a much greater chance of an accident post event. A friend of mine had his son horribly injured in a household accident when things were normal (severe autism, not just Asbergers). I would build as many safeties into my contingencies as possible.

For example generators and other equipment can be very dangerous as well as the fuel to run them. Fencing that stuff off and securing it is essential to avoid a tragedy.

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 17, 2011 3:19 pm 
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I speak from complete ignorance here, but would camping trips be a useful prep activity? Pretty much a mock bug out I suppose, in terms of food, in terms of being use to a bag, Being used to trips, the planned route, and the idea that I don't know when or If this will happen, but when I say or do X, you must Y?

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 17, 2011 4:19 pm 
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My thought would be at all times during the situation, involve the autistic individual in ways that play to their strengths.

Give him/her focused, repetitive activities: counting and inventorying the food supplies, ordering the survival items at home or the BOL. Continually log radio news reports with the exact time and duration of the updates. Lay out the sleeping areas so everyone has the exact same amount of floor space. Scheduling meal times and selecting and cataloging ration menus.

In other words, build a predictable routine into everything he or she has to do.

Heck, if the SHTF, activities like that would probably comfort me.

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 17, 2011 4:41 pm 
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Evan the Diplomat wrote:
My eight year old is on the very high end of the spectrum, Aspergers I think. He is obsessed with sea creatures, handles change pretty well, but does like his routines.

I enrolled him with his younger brother in Cub Scouts so he can better learn to relate with others, recognize leaders and learn some outdoor skills.

Still coming to grips with the whole situation. Wife is up the river denile.
Heh, that sounds like an Aspie kid all right. If he keeps the obsession he may end up as a marine biologist, who knows?

I had a similar benefit from being in childrens' choirs when I was a youngster. My whole family likes music and we're generally pretty good at it; and when you sing in a choir you have to always be conscious of the others around you, careful to blend in and harmonize. It can help with learning multi-tasking.

My mom was in denial, too, when I was a kid. She knew very well I was autistic but she didn't tell me about it until I was nineteen and had already been diagnosed independently; when I called her to tell her she responded, "Yeah, I knew when you were eleven, but I didn't want to label you..." (I was 11 when the DSM-IV came out with its expanded definition of autism spectrum disorders, allowing for idiosyncratic/echolalic speech rather than only speech delay.) If only she'd told me earlier I could've got to work on some of these issues myself, instead of just thinking I was obviously stupid for not knowing things everybody else knew!

Your kid's still the same kid, you know? I think she'll get used to it eventually. I mean, it's just a word for what he's been all along; it doesn't really change anything.

But just so your boy has at least one person on his side who accepts and treasures his differences, he will be OK. For me, that was my grandfather... he taught me philosophy when I was a teenager, taught me how to evaluate things logically. He basically treated me like I was capable and competent, and that was just exactly what I needed.

majorhavoc wrote:
My thought would be at all times during the situation, involve the autistic individual in ways that play to their strengths.

Give him/her focused, repetitive activities: counting and inventorying the food supplies, ordering the survival items at home or the BOL. Continually log radio news reports with the exact time and duration of the updates. Lay out the sleeping areas so everyone has the exact same amount of floor space. Scheduling meal times and selecting and cataloging ration menus.

In other words, build a predictable routine into everything he or she has to do.

Heck, if the SHTF, activities like that would probably comfort me.
Oh, yes, absolutely. Keeping inventory is something many of us (not all; it depends on talent) are quite good at. It's all about the detail-oriented outlook. Depending on who they are, you may end up having a built-in bookkeeper. I know one guy with autism of some sort, who works at a warehouse that distributes firemen's gear. He literally has the warehouse layout memorized--never has to refer to a map and can go straight to any item in the place. And it's not a small warehouse, either. Personally, I don't have the memory for it, but I do have a talent for record-keeping.

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PostPosted: Tue Mar 29, 2011 8:36 am 
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I'm glad this has been brought up. My 8 year old has aspergers' and i know that change in routine can be really hard for him.
We have to keep talking about doing different things days before the event, otherwise he just goes into meltdown. He doesn't get the idea of preping for disasters etc, because he just can't imagine what and how could happen. Even doing picture cards, that normally work for routines at school don't help.
Were he does excel though, is remembering and recognising plants, trees etc, and whether they're safe to eat or not. His memory for things he's learnt is unbelievable. He's also got eyes like a hawk and misses nothing, which could be usefull for foraging.
I think one of the biggest problems though, is that he's got no sense of danger, and i mean non at all. He can hurt himself playing outside, and 10 minutes later he will do the same thing again. He's also got no fear, so dangerous places like deep water, heights etc can be a real problem.


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 29, 2011 8:55 am 
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My son was diagnosed with a non-specific version of autism - he's very high functioning, so much so that sometimes I forget he has "issues". There are some things he handles just fine, and other things not so well.

I haven't really started working on prepping him (or the rest of our little family for that matter) as I'm still getting into that mindset myself.

I think the biggest hurdle is going to be, for him, getting ready for something that hopefully will never happen. Some things get into his head and he obsesses over them - no surprise for those of you having dealt with these children or have some yourself. I just don't want him worrying overly much about the "what ifs", but I do want him to understand that the S my H The F. :wink:

I have started buying him some little things, like a small pocket knife, a (cheap and crappy) pocket flashlight, and recently got him a compass. He's semi-interested in these things when I show him how they work and whatnot, but then they quickly go into the "not legos, not a movie, not a toy" bin in his head and kind of dismisses them.

What I am going to begin doing is bringing out these tools a bit more regularly, and start working with him on why it's important to have, for instance, a pocket knife handy (although I may start with the flashlight hehe), and the do's and don't's of the same.

Oh..probably should've mentioned this up top, but he's 12, and we've been aware of his condition since he was...3 1/2 or so. Took him to take an IQ test (because we knew he was smart, cuz his parents are geeks ehhehe), and that person almost immediately said we needed to take him to someone who specialized in children with autism spectrum disorders (although I don't really agree with the "disorders" part of that ehhe), and have him tested. According to the vanilla test, his IQ was horribly low. Taking into account he had some type of autism, he has a fairly high IQ.

Hmm...ok, long post, and semi-off topic, but there ya go :)

I'll try to post updates as we go along, and keep tabs on other peoples progress as well. :mrgreen:

Oh, re: flash cards and whatnot, something that helped my son grasp certain situations that he just didn't get, was having *him* draw a picture of what he thought things were. Then we'd add to the picture or we'd draw one, and show him how we were feeling regarding such-and-such a situation. That worked wonders to get the point across.

YMMV

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PostPosted: Wed Mar 30, 2011 8:44 am 
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One of the other big problems is food. Korben has a very limited diet, because he doesn't like the texture and/or colours of most foods. He will eat apples, grapes, bananas and melon; but not oranges, pears, kiwi etc. He won't eat cheese on it's own, but on pizza he's fine. Rice and pasta are out, as are most veg, but he will eat broccoli, carrots, peas and potato, but only if they're cut up small and boiled. He's fine with fish and chicken (and turkey if we tell him it's chicken) but any red meat is a no-no. He won't eat eggs and only drinks water, milk or tea.
So, how the hell do i pack a bob with that to contend with? Obviously drinking's not a problem, but i could be looking at some weight and storage issues when it comes to food. If it's not something off that list he just will not eat. It's bad enough going out for a meal, so what it'll be like if the poo hits the breeze machine i hate to think.


Just been looking at the how to build a bob thread. I didn't realise that some of those ration blocks come in cookie flavour (can't remember the name of them off-hand), but maybe that's the way to go, at least for a 24-72 hour bug out. At least there's a good chance that he'll eat those and get some nutrients from them.


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 30, 2011 11:44 am 
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Rice and pasta are out, as are most veg, but he will eat broccoli, carrots, peas and potato, but only if they're cut up small and boiled.


That is actually super easy and light weight, go with dehydrated. You can roll your own to save a lot of money. Buy the super large bargain basement bag of frozen mixed veggies and dehydrate them then seal them in large packages. They should last several years.

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He's fine with fish and chicken (and turkey if we tell him it's chicken) but any red meat is a no-no.


I'd go canned if he will eat it. Lighter weight would be the foil packs. You can get chicken, salmon, tuna and anything else he might like.

Cliff Bars come in lots of flavors that might work.

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PostPosted: Wed Mar 30, 2011 11:35 pm 
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Prepping advice for families dealing with autism?

1.) Face reality. Until a family can come to terms with the fact that a member has a disability, then no amount of prepping will really help. Denial is a zombie every bit as dangerous to the disabled as discrimination zombies or ignorance zombies.

2.) Seek a second opinion. Autism is a very over-diagnosed disability, much like ADD or ADHD. Treating a person like they have Autism when they have another form of disability does them no favors. Do the best you can to make sure the diagnosis is as accurate as possible.

3.)Establish the limits of the disability. Constantly challenge the disabled and learn to accept that there are some things they just cannot do. Once you discover what those limits are, you have a pretty good idea how to go about planning around it.

4.)BE SUPPORTIVE!!! Yup, if you have an autistic family member, then it is your duty to be the rock that they lean on, their shelter in the storm. DON'T SHIRK THAT RESPONSIBILITY!!!

These first four, IMHO, are absolute necessities, in prepping and in everyday life. Once you have done them, you have a somewhat stable starting point for your preps.

4.) Make a family plan that involves THE WHOLE FAMILY. Each person should have a role, and each role should be mutually supportive of the others. For example, if an autistic family member is placed in charge of going to the closet and getting the BOBs, then another family member's responsibility should place them within hearing and speaking distance.

5.) Disasters are usually highly unpredictable events, and no plan survives completely intact after TSHTF, but there are some constants that autistic people can excel at pointing out and exploiting. Every evolving disaster plan should include someone who is in charge of gathering information. Every disaster plan should have someone in charge of cataloging the available preps at any given time. Seek the most stable elements of disaster prep as a focus for your autistic member's responsibilities.

6.) During an evacuation or SHTF, make sure you communicate well. Since YOU are the person/people who have the most contact with your disabled family member(s), first responders and more distant kin will rely on your ability to communicate the nature of the disability and the sufferer's current mental state. Of course, you may be unable to do so (especially if you sacrificed yourself for your family). I may be a good idea to keep a roll of tape handy so you can write "Autistic" on a piece of it before slapping it on a visible part of your family member's gear. First Responders are trained to look for "MedicAlert" style jewelry. Investing a few bucks on a MedicAlert bracelet or necklace is a very good idea, IMHO.

7.) Work WITH your family member's autism, not around it. Include them in your planning. Make them feel like they have a voice in matters. Make them a part of the team. This leads into the next entry...

8.) Make sure that you consider your autistic family member to be EQUAL to every other member of your family, and communicate that idea to your entire family. Don't base your disaster plans around the survival of the one autistic member. Base your preps around the survival of the family as equal members. You may have a great responsibility to the disabled, but that doesn't negate your responsibility to the rest of your kith and kin. Plus, every single disabled person I have met (and I have met plenty of them in my life,) just want to be considered as equals and treated as such. Placing too much emphasis on disabled members breeds jealousy and hatred amongst the non-disabled members, and places too much stress on a member who may not be able to cope with the weight of your expectations.

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 31, 2011 8:02 am 
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That's a great idea Blacksmith, never thought about that with the veggies. He's funny about tuna, but would live off salmon, so i think thats definitaly the way to go.
I've been thinking about ways round his food problems for ages, but it looks like you've just solved them for me. Don't know why i never thought of it before. Thanks mate, i take my hat off to you.


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 31, 2011 10:16 am 
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callista wrote:
What would be your advice to these families? What's the best way to prepare both adults and children? Is there a way to "hook" families with autistic kids on the concept--if only to be sure their kids will be able to get through any emergencies?


I'm a SPED teacher, and work with children on the autistic spectrum every day, and have a couple of thoughts...

A disaster/emergency is by definition an interruption in routine, which is one of the things that people on the autistic spectrum have trouble handling. While you can't establish a routine for every possible disaster/emergency, you could certainly establish routines for how to act when exposed to many of the most common symptoms.
* Working up to a night without power in your home (with food, activities, bathroom, and bedtime) would be a good one.
* Working up to a night camping out
* Working up to 5+ mile walks over various terrain types, including in rain/wind/heat/cold
* Working up to eating shelf-stable and nutritious food that you will store and can carry in a disaster/emergency

I think that if the family of a person with autism could work towards all of those goals, they would better equipped to deal with lots of types of disasters/emergencies...I made a point of saying "Working up..." because the goals above may be incredibly difficult for some people on the autistic spectrum...it might take years to achieve a portion of any/all of the above goals...the important thing is that any progress will leave the person/family better able to deal with
disaster/emergency.

JMHO

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jayferg76 wrote:
That's a great idea Blacksmith, never thought about that with the veggies. He's funny about tuna, but would live off salmon, so i think thats definitely the way to go.
I've been thinking about ways round his food problems for ages, but it looks like you've just solved them for me. Don't know why i never thought of it before. Thanks mate, i take my hat off to you.


The whole point of this place is to help each other out I think. I have three autistic younger cousins and know how stressful it can be for the parents. One of my sons is borderline Asbergers. He has many of the mental traits and was severely speech delayed but emotionally is structured very different than most with Autism. Still he does not react well to change at all.

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 31, 2011 10:54 am 
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That's rather odd; speech delay excludes an Asperger's diagnosis. Really should be PDD-NOS or regular autism... Ah, well, some docs just say "Asperger's" because they're afraid the kid's mom will smack them with her purse if they say "autism". :P

I have had an Asperger's diagnosis myself, along with PDD-NOS and classic autism at other times, because they perceived me as too "high-functioning" to be autistic ("high-functioning" means I don't fit the doctors' stereotype of "severe" and has little other meaning), despite the fact that as a kid I was diagnosable as classic autism because I had echolalic speech and didn't get the hang of conversations until I was about nine. Today PDD-NOS ("atypical autism") is the best label because I've grown out of the language issues except for being quite pedantic and having a tendency to lecture, but still have that history of language issues that technically excludes me from Asperger's. See, this is why they're going to merge the autism spectrum into a single diagnosis... there are just no clear distinctions between the categories.

A better way to talk about the differences between autistic people isn't to use categories; it's to talk about the entire autistic spectrum being extremely diverse. Autistics are very different from one another, and their skills are all over the place. You really have to take them as individuals--there are no clear categories and no good way to put them in boxes at all. Individualizing just about everything is the best approach, I think.

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PostPosted: Fri Apr 01, 2011 12:38 am 
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Quote:
That's rather odd


Actually that is what most of his doctors and teachers say after examining him or teaching him for a while. Like you he is remarkably inconsistent with categorizing.

One of the more interesting traits that we have to work with him on is near instant (and final) memorization of everything. Once he learns A=A and B=B, these things are immutable and unforgettable. It is extremely difficult to later say that; A=A but it could also equal C, D or K. Since he learns things as soon as he hears them (when he is paying attention) this is a bit of a struggle to open the wider world up. We also have been extremely careful as to what to tell him and how to say it. A few careless words have resulted in days of "unteaching" in a couple of cases when we were sorting all this out.

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PostPosted: Fri Apr 01, 2011 5:36 am 
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[quote]We also have been extremely careful as to what to tell him and how to say it. A few careless words have resulted in days of "unteaching" in a couple of cases when we were sorting all this out.[quote]

I'm with you on that one. It's so easy to say something, and then BAM! It's in his head, and there's no way he's gonna forget it. We still forget sometimes that he takes everything litrally, and that be a long drawn out process trying to then explain what you mean. I can't think of any examples off the top of my head, and after a 1/2 hour he just goes to pieces trying to understand what you are on about.
One thing we've found that can work is breaking sentences and instructions down into really small, simple lines. For example, instead of saying "Korben, go upstairs, brush your teeth and get your pyjamas on", we'll say "Korben, teeth", and he'll go do it. Then it's "Korben, pyjamas", then he'll do that. This seems to work quite well most of the time.
Another thing is what his phsycologist called the 10 second rule. We were getting frustrated that it took him ages to do something when asked or told, or even to respond to his name. He said that once you've said something, give it at least 10 seconds before repeating, as it can take this long for him to process what you're saying.
We've found that it actually takes 20-30 seconds for him to respond, but it really works, and doesn't overload his brain with to much information.


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PostPosted: Fri Apr 01, 2011 8:33 am 
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Very true; slow processing speed can be an issue. I don't have a thirty-second delay or even a ten-second one, but there's enough of a lag for me--maybe about a second slower than most people--that I can't really understand a conversation when more than one person is talking nearby, such as in a crowded place. Sometimes I find myself "replaying" things people have said in my head in order to understand them--replaying just the sounds, so that I can pick the words from them.

Makes pre-teaching even more important. Knowing what to do means you don't have to get the information from someone else's instructions while you're overloaded.

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PostPosted: Fri Apr 01, 2011 11:33 am 
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jayferg76 wrote:
Quote:
We also have been extremely careful as to what to tell him and how to say it. A few careless words have resulted in days of "unteaching" in a couple of cases when we were sorting all this out.
Quote:

I'm with you on that one. It's so easy to say something, and then BAM! It's in his head, and there's no way he's gonna forget it. We still forget sometimes that he takes everything litrally, and that be a long drawn out process trying to then explain what you mean. I can't think of any examples off the top of my head, and after a 1/2 hour he just goes to pieces trying to understand what you are on about.
One thing we've found that can work is breaking sentences and instructions down into really small, simple lines. For example, instead of saying "Korben, go upstairs, brush your teeth and get your pyjamas on", we'll say "Korben, teeth", and he'll go do it. Then it's "Korben, pyjamas", then he'll do that. This seems to work quite well most of the time.
Another thing is what his phsycologist called the 10 second rule. We were getting frustrated that it took him ages to do something when asked or told, or even to respond to his name. He said that once you've said something, give it at least 10 seconds before repeating, as it can take this long for him to process what you're saying.
We've found that it actually takes 20-30 seconds for him to respond, but it really works, and doesn't overload his brain with to much information.


Same issues here with "too literal" and not able to take multiple directions at once - and understand that the order is "finish the first thing I told you before starting the next thing I just told you". We have gotten better at describing what we want him to do and why, and he's actually been a little better with his feedback ("You just told me to X." "No, first we said go do Y, then do X." "Oh, ok").

Although I'll admit we have it much easier than most, aside from his food issues which are psychological rather than autism related. He had adenoids the size of a grapefruit when he was 2, and developed a nasty "I eat something different I throw up" reflex. Going to take good long while to fix that little gem. :(

Also going to give that 10 second thing a try. Although he has a very quick response time - even if it is usually "I'll do that in just a minute". ;)

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PostPosted: Fri Apr 08, 2011 2:47 pm 
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I like this thread. I have a 14 year old son with that label. He's definitely not the "stereotype", but somewhere on the spectrum.

I've thought a lot about how to handle each of my 5 kids in an emergency situation. His view on the world would make bugging out a challenge, but not impossible. Most of all I have to consider the "textures" of the environment (I may have to carry him through fields of tall grass or low hanging branches) and the food that he will (or mostly will not) eat.

I love that someone said "play to their strengths. My son loves to work. He'll carry stuff all day. He'll march on all day if I say "we're going fishing"... but dangit, I better have a place to fish at the end of it!

Thanks for sharing.


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PostPosted: Sat Apr 09, 2011 1:28 pm 
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jayferg76 wrote:
One thing we've found that can work is breaking sentences and instructions down into really small, simple lines. For example, instead of saying "Korben, go upstairs, brush your teeth and get your pyjamas on", we'll say "Korben, teeth", and he'll go do it. Then it's "Korben, pyjamas", then he'll do that. This seems to work quite well most of the time.
Another thing is what his phsycologist called the 10 second rule. We were getting frustrated that it took him ages to do something when asked or told, or even to respond to his name. He said that once you've said something, give it at least 10 seconds before repeating, as it can take this long for him to process what you're saying.
We've found that it actually takes 20-30 seconds for him to respond, but it really works, and doesn't overload his brain with to much information.

I can vouch for these points. My 5 year old autistic (aspergers) nephew doesn't do complex, or instantly, but give him simple, and a little bit of time, and he responds brilliantly.

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PostPosted: Fri Apr 22, 2011 1:54 pm 
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I just want to say that this is an invaluable thread!

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