I love my son so much. It’s what gives me the ability to be patient and understanding with him. Raising a child with autism has many challenges. I take them on, day to day, and handle them to the best of my ability. Some are easy to deal with, others are not. Now that my son is a teenager, some of them seem to be getting harder.
My son has always had a stubborn streak. In the past, I have been able to manage this. He was easily redirected to something else. Now, he isn’t. He gets his mind set on wanting to do something, or get something, and there is no redirecting him. We’ve been having a really hard time at night because of this. He doesn’t want to go to bed when it is time. He wants to be on the computer, or he wants the computer turned off. He won’t go to bed if the computer is on, even though we are using it. My son has always been OCD, but it was always minor. It didn’t interfere with day to day life. Now it does. His OCD has gotten worse. One example is walking. In the past, he would walk around a different surface type, and avoid stepping on things. It wasn’t a big deal, but could be challenging when walking across a parking lot. Now, he has to step on everything. Any little difference in the surface, any object on the ground. His entire focus is on the ground. This is dangerous when we are walking in a parking lot. It’s also lead to him walking into people, or things.
I blame this on teenage hormones. Becoming a teenager isn’t just a matter of my child getting older. It means things have changed internally. Chemical changes. Every parent of a teenager will tell you that their child completely changed when they became a teenager. I had hoped that I wouldn’t have to deal with this with my son. Of course, that was wishful thinking. The teenage years are officially here, and I feel overwhelmed. The school has even noticed differences. I have an IEP meeting scheduled the last week of school. I am going to talk to them about a behaviour plan. We haven’t needed one before, but I think it is time now.
We’ll get through this, I know. It’s just going to take time and patience. Something I’ve gotten good with.