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Standing In the Way - That's Where You'll Find Me

Thursday, April 22, 2010 @5:10:55 PM

Yes, I will be there, standing in the way. I am going to stand in the way of anyone who puts social expectations put upon my AS daughter. She is on the Autism Spectrum. She doesn’t "get it" like the world expects her to and she's not going to "get it," in their way, any time soon. Therefore, I am going to be there, standing in the way for my daughter. I am going to run interference for her and am going to continue to do so as long as necessary. So, for people who automatically think that they have direct access to my daughter, they are mistaken. No one has direct access to my daughter unless they go through me. People who are not willing to go through me find that their access to my daughter is severely limited and that leads to a great deal of frustration on their part. However, that simply can't be my problem. My daughter is my priority and I will continue to stand in the way no matter what others think of me or say to me about it.

 

I take my cues from her on this. She is extremely sensitive in social situations and becomes easily confused and overwhelmed. When I am with her, I watch and listen. The listening is key. As I listen, I pick up cues on how she's doing and when she sends the right cue, I step in and balance the conversation. I do it quickly and without apology, often leaving the other person in the conversation confused and frustrated. It's like our own little social dance and we are very good at reading each other's cues.  When this happens, she smiles ever so slightly.  She's relieved; I've read her cue.

 

My daughter is not clueless. When others have made comments about her awkwardness or hesitation in a social setting, she is fully aware of those comments and we talk about them later on. She thinks those people have a real problem and she's right, they do. She has usually already analyzed the situation and reached a conclusion that works for her. She has realized that "they" are the ones who need to "get it."


When she's ready for more independence on this, she will seek that out and send the appropriate signals. Until then, I'm going to be standing in the way; that's where you'll find me.

~Tricia



6 comments on “Standing In the Way - That's Where You'll Find Me”

lassie Says:
Thursday, April 22, 2010 @5:26:50 PM

I often feel that I "interpret" the world for my daughter, and I guess most people think it is because she is blind, but it is really because even with vision, she just wouldn't understand all the social stuff and the pace of conversation would be overwhelming sometimes. Thanks for your observations, Tricia. Lydia
trishkj Says:
Thursday, April 22, 2010 @5:30:54 PM

I hesitated to post this because I feared that people might think I was a very "controlling" mom who won't let my daughter talk to anyone. But, then I realized that this hangout is THE place where I can post this and people will understand. Thanks for your kind words. Pace of conversation is one of Anne's biggest hurdles......she has even taken to raising her hand and being called upon when she wants to speak because the pace is far too overwhelming.
Tricia
lassie Says:
Thursday, April 22, 2010 @5:32:24 PM

This is the right place! Lydia
KMDD Says:
Tuesday, April 27, 2010 @6:13:51 PM

Have found myself in a similar experiences with both my children --the way i figure is nobody loves or knows them better than me!!
momforever10 Says:
Wednesday, April 28, 2010 @12:29:43 PM

I just now joined this group because I wanted to purchase one of Donna Williams' programs. I came across your post and immediately realized - I'm not the only Mom who feels this way. I too am "standing in the way" but usually it is negatively called "interference". I worry about what will happen to her when I am no longer here. Diane
trishkj Says:
Monday, June 14, 2010 @6:20:57 PM

HI, Diane. Sorry I didn't reply to your post sooner; I just now saw it. You know what? You standing in the way now will strengthen and enable her to stand on her own through your strength, even when you are no longer here. We all have to think about that at some point, but the strength won't show itself until it's needed - and then it will be fully realized and appreciated.
Tricia

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