An Inspector Calls…

I know that many parents of children with autism will be familiar with the scenario I’m about to describe. You talk to a professional about your child’s abilities or behaviour; they then meet the child who proceeds to act in a way which bears no resemblance to your description. I can’t count the number of times this has happened to us.  I’ve assured speech therapists that Henry is verbal, only to have him fail to utter a single word in their presence. I remember an Early Years specialist who raised her eyebrows in a faintly pitying expression when I told her that he enjoyed playing, then tried rolling a ball to him. He didn’t just ignore her and the ball – it was as if neither of them existed. And on the other hand, I’ve sometimes warned doctors that he is likely to react badly to certain procedures, only to have him hop up onto the couch and lie down, smiling sweetly. I’m not sure if I’d rather be seen as deluded or over-anxious but I know that a scribble in the margin is possible either way.

We had our first visit from the Elective Home Education Officer this afternoon. She wanted me to talk about our programme and how Henry is progressing, which I did, describing how his speech, social and play skills have improved since September. Henry then came in from the garden where he’d been playing with Ellie and – to my enormous surprise – proceeded to demonstrate everything I’d been talking about: interacting with Ellie, requesting things, trying to get my attention by saying ‘Mummy’, asking the EHEO to tickle him and treating her, not like a stranger to be ignored or got rid of as soon as possible, but as an adult who was very probably going to add to his afternoon’s entertainment. She was charmed and pronounced herself ‘more than satisfied’ with the way things are going.

Now for speech therapy on Thursday…

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9 thoughts on “An Inspector Calls…

  1. wiggleywoo

    Congratulations to both of you for impressing the EHEO.

    I know exactly what you mean about children performing. No one believes me when I explain my daughters behaviours when they normally just see her as a sweet smiling, willing child… These are the days we go out. Other days we don’t brave the outside!!

    Reply
    1. movingbeyondthelabel Post author

      Yes I think I’m often guilty of only presenting the positive side. My photo files are full of pictures of Henry looking straight at the camera, smiling, – there are many.many more of him trying to escape in the trash folder!

      Reply
      1. wiggleywoo

        Some of those are my favourite photos of my daughter. I like the difference… although sometimes I hate it and think it’s evil!!

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