Thread: Self-harming
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Old 04-25-2012, 02:32 AM   #4
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Re: Self-harming

Hi there,

My son as Asperger’s, he was diagnosed with it ten years ago. I have to say I am very sorry to read your post and you naturally have my deepest concerns and sympathises for your worries. This must be a very upsetting and traumatic time for not just you but your daughter.

One of the traits of Asperger’s is an inability to understand verbal communications and to be unaware of body language that we generate. Most people can pick up clues as to others feelings from the body language/facial expressions that others are displaying, people with AS have difficulty with this. When in a crowd most people can pick up small clues as to when to speak and when to be quiet from the body language of others. Unfortunately because people with AS find this very difficult it can be extremely difficult for them to fit in with the crowd. They can find that making friends, something that generally comes naturally to most people, very difficult. They can become very isolated and at times are open to bullying. Although there is a want, need and desire to fit in with others AS suffers find it extremely difficult. It is this that can bring about feeling of frustration. Constant rejection or fear of rejection by those around her will lead to frustration, depression and self-arming.

I am simply offering you an opinion here but my opinion is that it is the frustration that is bringing about the extreme reaction your daughter is showing.

You had posted the school is aware and so are the doctors, this is of course the correct thing to do. It goes without saying that you are a loving caring mother and you of course reinforce this daily with your daughter. If you have not already explained to her what her condition is, now is the time to do so.

This is all about building bridges here and restoring confidence. The school and the doctors must be involved, those around her must be involved, it is important now that anybody close to your daughter is made aware of her condition, made aware of the frustration that comes with it and made aware of the actions that need to be taken to restore confidence.

I don’t know whether this scheme will work for you but at one point in my sons school education his occupational therapist suggest something she called the “circle of friends”. This was a very informal scheme whereby a small group of children from the school were handpicked to look out for and guide my son. At the time, the reason for the circle was not fully explained to the children but they did look out for my son, they did report any form of bullying (I am not suggesting your daughter is being bullied) to the teachers. It did work, the children looked after him, and it was another set or eyes and ears on the ground, so to speak.

The line you have to walk here is very fine, on one hand you want to help on the other you are afraid to make it worse but you can walk this line. You cannot be at school with daughter, you cannot be there 24/7. But you can utilise all those around you and her and you can restore confidence but it is going to take time. All of this must and I cannot stress this enough, must be approached in a calm and collective manner. There has to be an end game here.

I really do hope this all works out for you and if it is of any comfort you have my support.

If you have not read, I would recommend you and your daughter read the excellent “Geeks, Freaks and Aspersers Syndrome”. It is written by a 13 year old child and we, including my son, have all read it. It gives great insight and extremely helpful. It is written by a child with AS for a child with AS.


Last edited by blokecalledkev; 04-25-2012 at 10:36 AM. Reason: added.