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Posted by Pete UK on June 30, 2000 at 11:48:19:

In Reply to: Is this really autism? posted by Shari on May 23, 2000 at 09:54:38:

My son has been profesionally diagnosed as High Functioning autistic and at home { the natural environments for 3 yr olds } he is also very affectionate with age appropriate language skills, a good sense of humour and is very agile and according to the experts psychologists without learning disabilities.

However he does not mix at all with his peer group and does what I guess a lot of HFA kids do and that is repeat words or actions a lot, this behaviour, termed stimming, appears to be a good indicator.

He cannot be coerced to do any fine motor shills like drawing etc although his fine motor skills are age appropriate.

Bottom line is that HFA kids can have no inate learning difficulties however they are autistic and it is important to make the diagnosis for the following reason. A HFA kid has masses of potential that can only be unlocked by one on one expert tuition {expensive} and without a diagnosis you are unlikely to get the right help.

Does he stim {echo and repeat}?
Does he seem to ignore children his own age { not shy but uninterested }?

If you say yes to these I suspect that you should persue a professional diagnosis, the name IS important for the only reason that matters, that your child gets the best and most appropriate treatment.

Sorry if I went on a bit but this is fresh in my mind as I am undergoing the statementing process over in blighty, this is where you hope to get extra resources for your child. Best Wishes Pete

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