Autism and Sensory Challenges

When Autistic moments clash!

If you have a child on the spectrum you’ll be well aware of the various sensory challenges our children face, if you have more than one on the spectrum you’ll be especially aware of how their differing needs can clash!  One of these divine moments happened yesterday in The Mad Shanks Residence and succeeded in reducing me to tears of laughter.


If you want to touch Nikita, ask her permission first and do it evenly on both sides!


It went something like this.  I’d been reading up about last night’s Super Moon Eclipse and knowing how much my children have always loved the moon I took Nikita outside to have a look at 9pm last night, far too early for the red bit but it was so big and bright I knew she would want to see it.  We then called Mirie outside as she is a real moon fanatic and worries every time it’s not visible, she couldn’t miss this beautiful one!  As we were ‘ooooohing’ and ‘aaaaaaahing’, Osborn made an appearance but was a little less impressed than we girls, after all, as he pointed out very scientifically, it only looked 14% bigger than normal.  Thanks Oz!

We didn’t allow his logical take on the beauty of the bright moon to dampen our spirits and continued with our wistful observations, all revelling in the peace and beauty of the moment, then, in a flash, it was shattered……..

Bear in mind that all 3 of them are on the spectrum and have their own sensory challenges, so when Osborn clicked the joints in his fingers it was no surprise to me that Mirie instantly reacted with a shriek, she can’t tolerate the noise of it.  The sudden anxiety of his fingers clicking caused her to threaten to click her tongue at Osborn, a sound that he can’t tolerate to such an extent that he runs screaming from the vicinity!  He then lashed out and accidentally hit Nikita who instantaneously screamed to Osborn as she doesn’t like being touched.

I felt as though I’d been transported into World war 3!  The serenity of the previous ten minutes was well and truly over.  Finding myself in the middle of the chaos, Nikita jumping around afraid that someone else was going to unexpectedly touch her and trying to ‘even up’ the touch she’d already suffered, Mirie still shouting at Osborn that he knows how much the finger clicking gets to her, him screaming at her that it took all of us years to get used to closing the bathroom door when we brushed our teeth (another sound he can’t tolerate) and me looking bewildered as I tried to rewind the whole scenario in my head and work out what just happened!

I pieced it all together and just burst out laughing.  The whole thing had brought back memories of so many occasions that were exactly the same where peace reigned one minute and all hell broke loose the next.  This has been my life, and whilst it can be very stressful at times, it has been a fascinating observation into what makes them all ‘tick’, their little foibles make them who they are and I love them all to bits.

And, let’s face it, seeing the funny side is sometimes the only way forward unless you want to live a life filled with anxiety and unhappiness, and I certainly don’t!  My children are very well used to me getting fits of the giggles at the most inappropriate times, and whilst they chastise me, they actually do appreciate the fact that we can all have fun and laugh at ourselves.  It’s something we do a lot of and I believe it keeps us sane!






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