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Illy, I think you highlight very well the fact your child does certainly NOT behave aggressively due to learnt behaviour from home.
In almost every time the Team I work for are asked to help a family change aggressive or ‘violent’ behaviour it has been due to distress, uncertainty or anxiety in the child and not due to what the child has seen and is copying. I does give me cause for concern that this suggestion has been so forcefully made a number of times.
Parents find it difficult enough living with a child with ASD without it being implied that their child’s behaviour may, in some way, be their fault.
This arguement also falls down in the fact that children with ASD rarely transfer a behaviour learned in one envirnoment to another – as they are often unable to generalise.
I feel i must comment on a previous statement made by Radagast about ‘appropriate social behaviours….. being almost universally ignored by society at large, possibly even by the parent/carer.’
We must be talking at different levels. The children i generally work with need guidance on the most basic of appropriate social behaviours e.g. not stripping off in Tescos, how to wait in a queue, going to the bathroom to use the toilet, how to approrpriately gain someone’s attention. These are the type of social rules that we all live by and are generally not ignored by society.
If, indeed these rules are ignored by parents / carers why is it these very people that ask for our help?
The skills learnt, not only benefit the family allowing them to access sections of the community they, otherwise, do not feel able to do. But, perhaps more importantly, without these skills children with ASD are left very vulnerable out in the community. Like it or not society has expectations that people will conform to a certain extent – this does not mean that people with ASD can’t be ‘themselves’.
Finally i don’t know anyone who lives with or works in the field of ASD that feels that the children we know are ‘less than us’. We generally do think they are ‘extraordinary’, loving and clever, but in reality they can also be also draining, frustrating and really difficult to care for. This does not mean they are loved any less.
Yes general opinion is that ASD is a life long disability but that DOES NOT mean that children with ASD will not change, mature and develop with knowledgable help and support. Nor does it mean that they will always ‘be living with you as long as you live’.
Sorry about the long rant. Felt it needed saying!