xmlns:og='http://ogp.me/ns#' Yeah. Good Times.: Guest post: Can you help a sister out? #spd

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Guest post: Can you help a sister out? #spd

My friend and blogging/twitter sister Brandi, who blogs at Dysfunctional Supermom has a just-turned 4 year old boy who was very recently diagnosed with Sensory Processing Disorder. As is often the case if you live on this planet and have a child with a diagnosis of some sort, they're having some trouble finding services. There are OTs in their area but they all have really long waiting lists. In the meantime, though: They need help! I asked her to tell me what issues she had, specifically, in the hopes that I could give her some tips, but then I figured, why not ask you guys, too? Who else would know how to help a little boy with SPD than a bunch of autie parents, right? So, here is what she sent me, please read and advise. THANKS!

He squints constantly. Especially when he's talking. Like blinking to the extreme.

He's eating all forms of paper. Paper, cardboard, his flash cards, books. Eating it. As in shitting paper, eating it. His pediatrician and speech therapist suggest "firmly reminding him that it's not food." Really?! Like I wouldn't have thought of that on my own or already be doing that...because after four kids and 14 years of mothering, I would have NEVER guessed to try that idea. Fucking idiots. NOT WORKING.

Food is a challenge. "PICKY" is a super understatement. He eats the following: chocolate milk, orange juice, apple juice, waffles, pancakes, chicken, potatoes (mashed, fried, baked), rice, chicken noodle soup, yogurt, pudding, bananas, apples, and bread. Sometimes... cheese. Rarely--oreos, vanilla ice cream, popsicle, teddy grahams (honey). He's a food Nazi. I supplement with Pedia-sure and liquid vitamins to make sure that he's not undernourished.

He refuses to wear shoes. About 98% of the time. And then...only crocs, which is FINE! But it's a fucking war to convince him to put those on. He doesn't like socks either. HATES them.

He hates any clothing but what is made out of knit cotton jersey and it better be soft and tagless and SOFT. Did I say soft? Because he will let you know in a heartbeat. It's itchy. Or makes him sweaty. Or it hurts.

Getting a haircut hurts him. What. The. Fuck.

Normal sounds hurt him. As in the sound of people talking... if there are more than 2 people in the room. He curls up in the fetal position, puts his fingers in his ears and screams bloody murder.

When he's nervous or worked up, he chews on his lips until he's bleeding and even then doesn't stop.

He scratches and claws at his own skin until it's red and sometimes bloody.

He sleeps sporadically and not on a normal schedule.

The only way to calm him if he's worked up is to put him in the water. Bath, shower, pool, ocean, even washing his hands...water soothes him. There are times when he stays in the bath or shower for and hour and a half but it works. There have been nights, we've gotten in the bath together at midnight, just to calm him down when the pajamas or sheets and blankets or the bed or something didn't feel right and he got worked up, so I could "reset" him.

I am so tired. And frustrated and angry and sad and grieving. A year ago, I had a beautiful little boy who didn't go through all of this shit and he just couldn't talk. Now I have a 4 year old little boy who is still heartbreakingly beautiful but his body fucking hates the environment around him and I don't know what to do.

I'm angry. So angry. I don't want this. I don't. I just don't.

I don't know what to do now.

How do I help him?