ARTICLE OF THE WEEK
Parenting: Disciplining a Child with PDD
The following excerpt is taken from Chapter 10 of Pervasive
Developmental Disorders: Finding a Diagnosis and Getting Help by Mitzi
Waltz, copyright 1999 by O'Reilly & Associates, Inc. For book
orders/information, call (800) 998-9938. Permission is granted to print
and distribute this excerpt for noncommercial use as long as the above
source is included. The information in this article is meant to educate
and should not be used as an alternative for professional medical care.
There's a parable about accepting children with disabilities that
regularly makes the rounds of support-group newsletters and Internet
discussion groups. Written by Emily Perl Kingsley, "Welcome to
Holland" (Kingsley, 1987) talks about the experience of planning a
trip to Italy but accidentally ending up in Holland, which doesn't have
the Coliseum or Michelangelo's David, but does have lovely tulips and
Rembrandt. Holland is different, but it's good in its own way--just like
your child with a disability.
While many parents have found this fable comforting, others feel
patronized by well-meaning advice and reading material that encourages
them to simply accept their lot.
When you are encouraged to accept your lot, even to see it as a gift, it
can make you think you don't have the right to be mad--but you do. No one
deserves to have these disorders, and no one deserves to have their lives
turned upside down by caring for someone else who does. On one level, you
do have to accept the situation. On another, you cannot, and must not if
you are to have the energy and determination to help your child.
I look at that "Welcome to Holland" pap piece and think,
"What the hell do they mean? Try `Welcome to Bosnia'!"
--Krista, mother of seven-year-old Joshua
To read the rest of this article, click here
The Angry Child
by Jere BROPHY
From "The Aggressive Child" by Luleen S. Anderson,
Ph.D, in Children Today (Jan-Feb 1978), published by the
Children's Bureau, from ERIC. (Reprinting permission
unnecessary.) Edited by Henry L. Shapiro, M.D.
Handling children's anger can be puzzling, draining, and
distressing for adults. One of the major problems in dealing
with anger in children is the angry feelings that are often
stirred up in us. We need to remind ourselves that we were not
always taught how to deal with anger as a fact of life during
our own childhood. We were led to believe that to be angry was
to be bad, and we were often made to feel guilty for expressing
It will be easier to deal with children's anger if we get rid
of this notion. Our goal is not to repress or destroy angry
feelings in children or in ourselves but rather to accept the
feelings and to help channel and direct them to constructive
Read the rest of the article here.
REQUIRED TO PARENT AN ASD
Jen, Khris, Becca, Bernie, Liz, Diana, Sue and Michelle
Sense of Humor (7)
* Ability to listen to any and all information ever collected about global
* A heavy-duty super-capacity washer/drier combo with a very good
* A fondness for Corel Livingware rather than fine china
* A very well made tough VCR that can withstand constant pause, rewind and
Patience by the dump truck load
* The ability to boil your cabbages at least a dozen times! (to repeat
yourself time and again)
* The ability to make a schedule and then live by it!
* The ability to plan your life way in advance!
* The ability to love a child unconditionally through all that this
disorder will put him through!
The ability to answer the same question but put 100 different ways.
* The ability to hide in a supermarket after your child has just called a
worker an idiot, because they were out of stock.
* Boardroom level skills of negotiation.
* The ability to think ahead or always be 1 step ahead of your child.
* To have to smarts to keep tons of AA batteries in the house.
The flexibility to adapt to what
your child can not
* The multitasking capability to do 12 things at once
* A very large can of Scotchguard
* A good friend who has been through "the system"
* A really fast internet connection and a list of sites
* Endless financial resources
* A housekeeper that comes daily
* A big bottle of Advil (or something stronger)
* The address to the BBB Autism Club
The ability to see and experience
imperfection and let that be ok...
The ability to accept the world and circumstances as they are
but strive onwards without giving into despair...
Be able to cook, shop, etc...at a
quick pace especially if your child's with you
that you can advocate for your child.
‘A case of beer couldn’t hurt,
A hearing aid you can turn off once
in awhile, lol
F. Rief, M.A.
These strategies are designed to help you better cope
with and manage the more challenging behaviors exhibited by children and
teens with ADHD. Many can be adapted for all types of kids!
Establish a few specific, important rules/expectations that are clearly
understood by all members of the household.
and positively reinforce your child for following rules/expectations.
Establish clear-cut consequences (that are logical, reasonable, and fair)
in advance with your child for breaking the rules.
structure, routine, and predictability.
limits and let your child know you mean business.
your child behaving appropriately (as frequently as possible). Immediately
reinforce that good behavior with a positive consequence. This means
something your child likes (e.g., praise, smiles, hugs, privileges,
activities, points/tokens earned towards a reward). Use the smallest
reinforcers necessary. Don't overdo it. Keep rewards reasonable -- no
More tips here.
Behavior Modification Techniques
One of the best tools I've ever
used for determining the reasons for some of my son's more difficult
behaviors has been the Durand
Motivational Assessment Scale (MAS). The scale was developed by V.Mark Durand, Ph.D., and Daniel B. Crimmins, Ph.D.
all of our best efforts, a large number of people who have severe
disabilities continue to display serious and disruptive behavior
problems...". This is a simplified way to carry out a
my son's behaviors seem to occur with no apparent antecedent
(trigger or reason), this scale helps me to determine whether the
behavior is seeking sensory input, attention, escape, or tangible.
The MAS is a
sixteen item questionnaire that assesses the functions or
motivations of behavior problems. The sixteen items are organized
into four categories of reinforcement (attention, tangible,
escape, and sensory). The MAS
asks questions about the likelihood of a behavior problem
occurring in a variety of situations (e.g., when presented with
addition, using this scale does not involve making behavior
problems worse, a feature that has obvious advantages. It is hoped
that through the use of the MAS, people with severe behavior
problems will have greater access to positive interventions."
help perform a functional assessment, try this PDF form for A
(antecedent) B (behavior) C (consequence).
A FOOD TASTING PROGRAM
BBB Member Liz
(with much help from her team!)
Note: this is best tried on an empty stomach.
The first part is probing for preferred stimuli (preferred foods)
Assemble a group (say, 6) of foods you'd like your child two try. Only
prepare a small amount of each; then section into very small pieces (i.e..
1/2 of a pea, tiny shred of carrot, smidge of apple - you get the idea)
Set out each of the six foods in separate bowls at the table in front of
Determine the most preferred item by noting which food your child reaches
for. The first item that s/he reaches for three times is the most
preferred item. Set that one aside and determine the order of preferred
foods, setting each aside.
Once you have an order (from one to six) of preferred
foods, you are ready to start trials.
Offer the most preferred item before dinner. Offer small bites ten times
(10 trials), keeping data on this. When your child initiates eating this
food on his own 80% of the time over three days, it is time to move on to
the second preferred item.
Follow instructions as above. When successful with 2nd item (80% 3 days in
a row), start to rotate that food with 1st preferred item.
While still rotating 1 & 2, move on to #3 alone (in isolation). When 3
is successful, rotate with 1 & 2.
Continue with each food as above.
NOTE: You may have to prompt the child to take the food.
correct: the child initiates taking the food independently
prompt: you guide the child's hand to take the food.
incorrect: the child throws the food, refuses to be compliant.
Only 'correct' is scored as correct. Mark 'prompt' with a
"P", but do not mark as correct. IE, 3 independent tastes, 4
throws and 3 prompts equals a correct score of 3.
Please note: sometimes, you will have no luck with a certain food
and you'll have to give that one up for awhile. There is some accounting
Also, don't start out with all "difficult" foods like spinach,
broccoli, cauliflower, onions etc. Try to put in foods that may be
agreeable to the child (i.e.. bananas, peaches). It is important that the
food is not part of his/her usual repertoire.
Stress in Childhood
Parents' Stress Affects Children
to Know When Your Family Needs Therapy
Parent Time Printable Checklists, Homepage
Food Diary (to check against possible food allergies)
Syndrome and Difficult Moments
Practical Solutions for Tantrums, Rage and Meltdown by Brenda Smith
Myles and Jack
Up Severely Autistic They Call Me Gabriel by Kate
Positive Approaches and People with Difficult Behaviour by Herbert Lovett
Your Sons and Daughters with Intellectual Disabilitiesby Karin
Melberg Schwier and Dave
Training for Individuals with Autism and Related Disorders
A Comprehensive Guide for Parents and Teachers
The Explosive Child;
Understanding and Helping Easily Frustrated, "Chronically
Inflexible" Children by Ross Greene, PhD
A Guide to Improving Sleep for Children with Special Needs by V. Mark Durand
Solving Behavior Problems in Autism: Improving Communication
with Visual Strategies by Linda Hodgdon
ADDRESSING THOSE TOUGH BEHAVIORS
Advice for Kids
Advice for Parents and Teachers
Report: The Effects of Exercise on the Self- Stimulatory Behaviors and
Positive Responding of Adolescents with Autism
Discipline and the Student with Disabilities
Society of America "Challenging Behaviors"
Unfortunate Situations; Law Enforcement and Autism
of Destructive Behaviors in Persons with Developmental Disabilities
Proof Your Home
Tips for Better Sleep plus Sleep
Enforcement and the Autism/PDD Issue
Homes and Other Alternatives
Written for Law Enforcement
The Dark Side;
Loving Every Minute of it - addressing negative feelings of
HARD TO TALK ABOUT - IMPOSSIBLE TO IGNORE
People with Mental
Retardation and Sexual Abuse
Violence Against Women with Disabilities
A SPOONFUL OF HUMOR... HELPS THE MEDICINE GO DOWN
SURVIVOR: WELCOME TO MY WORLD
By Lain Chroust Ehmann
I don't know what the big deal about Survivor is. What's so tough
about getting along on a remote tropical island, anyway? For most of
the parents I know, a few weeks of solitude-or a few weeks
surrounded by other adults without a nose to be wiped, a bottom to
be cleaned, or a toddler to discipline-sounds like pure heaven.
Heck, forget about the million dollars in prize money; I'd pay to
get sent to Pulau Tigua. Somehow, the hardships these participants
face don't seem so bad.
I hear the show's producers are already planning next year's
Survivor: 2001 in Australia. Maybe instead they should consider a
sequel that really tests the limits of human endurance: isolate team
members in a secluded house with several members of the under-six
set and let 'em battle it out.
I can just see it now: MTV's The Real World meets Romper Room.
Ratings will skyrocket as parents everywhere take time from reading
"Hop on Pop" to tune in.
The first episode, warring Tribes (Pampers vs. Huggies) compete in a
relay race Reward Challenge. Which team can be first to unload the
groceries from the minivan in sub-zero temperatures while the
three-year-old is clamoring for a Popsicle, the toddler is eating
cat food, and the newborn is sleeping peacefully in the car? The
Pampers Tribe is rewarded with a Baby Bjorn pack, suitable for
keeping colicky infants quiet while still allowing "Mom"
or "Dad" some limited freedom to do the dishes and clean
At the Tribal Council, the Huggies Tribe votes the former Navy SEAL
out because he inadvertently wakes the baby with his cursing when he
drops a grocery bag containing a dozen eggs on the icy front steps
as he attempts to keep the Golden Retriever from mauling the
cookie-selling Girl Scouts who appear at the door at an inopportune
moment. His errors compound when he fails to rekindle the oven's
pilot light after the preschooler extinguishes it by dumping the
entire contents of the flour canister on the stove.
The next week, contestants face their first real crisis as all three
children are hit with a simultaneous case of the stomach flu at the
same time the house is invaded by swarms of unexpected visiting
relatives, wanting to be fed and housed for "just a few
mail also brings a few unpleasant surprises, and the teams must
band together to make important decisions, such as whether to pay
the furnace repairman or get a new transmission put in the minivan.
The Reward Challenge of the week-the Bath and Bed relay-goes to the
Huggies Tribe, who successfully bathe, diaper, pajama and put all
three kids to sleep in record time. They walk away with a stack of
Barney videos and a VCR for the family room TV set.
At Tribal Council, in an unprecedented move, all participants under
the age of 25 on both teams are kicked out for dissension (the final
straw was when the younger contestants, fed up with the steady diet
of macaroni and cheese, tater tots and Teletubbies use the money set
aside for a family outing to Chuck E. Cheese's to order in sushi and
the Bare Naked Ladies Pay-Per-View concert special).
In upcoming installments, watch breathlessly as teams deal withissues such as chronic diaper rash (Will the chemist, Ramona, be
able to concoct a solution to cure the condition, or will the team
have to resort to cloth diapers?), sibling rivalry (Who really
flushed the Cabbage Patch Kid down the toilet?), and parenting
philosophies (What exactly is "Attachment Parenting,"
See them dump members for transgressions such as giving the kids
nightmares by allowing them to view Bride of Chuckie ("I
thought it was a 'Rug Rats' movie," says the ousted
contestant). Watch the tribes vie in Challenges such as the Potty
Parade and the Supermarket Scurry for creature comforts like a
Peapod grocery delivery account, a subscription to Parents magazine
and renowned pediatrician Dr. T. Barry Brazelton's home phone
Who will survive the changing emotional weather of life with three
kids? Who will prove hardy enough to withstand the ups and downs of
parental life? Who will walk away with the big prize? Tune in and
Now that's entertainment!
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Single Parents of ASD children:
upcoming series of chats and Newsletter themes will be discussing this
issue. We would greatly appreciate any input (i.e. links, articles, book
reviews and/or personal stories you may have. Anonymity is assured!
Please forward submissions to:
help is appreciated!
to Defuse an Angry Outburst
Say Good Bye to an Angry Outburst
- Do not respond with anger or threats.
- Put on soft music.
- Sing a silly song.
- Put on headphones and dance around the room.
- Speak softly, so the child has to pay close
attention to what you're saying.
- Try to redirect the child to a positive
- Have a snowball fight with cotton balls.
- Set a timer and give the child a specific
amount of time to stop.
- Count out loud, ask your child to count with
- Sit near the child and begin reading an age
appropriate book to the child.
- If necessary, remove the child from the area
or remove yourself.
- Stay consistent each time that an outburst
- Do not give into the child's demands, or you
will reinforce the value of outbursts.
Repertoires in Autism and What We
Can Do About It
by Cathy Pratt
is a summary of a presentation by Tony Attwood, Ph.D., from Brisbane,
Australia. Dr. Attwood described the developmental sequence followed by
typical children. Children with autism spectrum disorder follow the same
developmental sequence, but in an exaggerated fashion. For example,
children with autism spectrum disorder may collect the same type of
objects as other children, but to a point of excess. Another example is
the intense need for symmetry, or for information on a certain subject.
These exaggerated behaviors are identified as a restricted repertoire of
activities and interests.
individuals with autism spectrum disorder engage in simple, repetitive
actions such as rocking or spinning objects. What to do about repetitive
actions depends on the reason the individual is performing the activity or
the function of the behavior. The following are possible reasons for
repetitive actions and programming ideas specific to these reasons.
more, check out BBB Autism's PDF Files.
out our PDF files for great printable articles on challenging
behavior. Look for:
Habit Training (Toilet Training)
and the ASD Child
Skills Training in School
Issues and the use of Social Stories
Messages of Behavior
to Build Self-Esteem
Self-Esteem is Essential to Good Health.
Happy notes tucked in their lunch or under
Attending their school activities.
A favorite meal or treat.
Telling your child how proud you are of him
Saying "I love you."
Celebrate their accomplishments.
Give your child extra privileges.
It will always be in the best interest of
your children to nurture a healthy
Avoid negative power plays and accentuate
the positive behaviors.
Play skills to a Child with ASD
"This is a
selection of notes from over two years of behavioral intervention
sessions with a young child who ultimately recovered completely
from autism. It includes many curricula ("drill
sheets"), therapists' notes, and parents' notes, covering (in
part) his development from no pretend play skills all the way to
fully independent, spontaneous, creative play.
The notes are by
the parents, Megan and Jim Sumlin (pseudonyms), who feel strongly
that this information should be freely available to all who might
benefit from it. They ask only that these drills belong in the
public domain, and are not to be claimed or copy written by any
person who is or will in the future be seeking monetary gain for
wide distribution of same. Feel free to re-distribute this
document, but please include this entire preface.
To read the
Sumlins' program, please click here.
Some Behaviors Associated
many forms of social interaction
interaction occurs, the most common response is tantruming/ running
arch their back to avoid contact
possibly by hypersensitivity to certain sensory stimuli
individuals will not seek social interaction; avoid social situations
prefer being alone; indifferent to the company of others
possibly by not obtaining "biochemical" pleasure by being
hard to have friends, but can not keep them
learn social skills and social taboos by observing others
common sense when making social decision
possibly by the lack of reciprocity in their interactions, since
conversations revolve around themselves
hands over ears
the skin with one's hands or with another object
tactile defensive; i.e. some fabrics can be painful to feel
Can have a
high tolerance to pain
front to back
side to side
This type of
behavior can be characterized by any behavior which causes bodily harm to
him/herself. The most common observed self-injurious behavior would
include head-banging, hand biting, and excessive scratching or rubbing.
Problems can occur due to some ASD individuals having a high tolerance to
There are two
main sets of theories as to why people engage in self-injurious behaviors
social and physiological.
release beta-endorphins in the brain, which provides an internal
may be caused by sub-clinical seizures
or ear hitting may be caused by an ear infection
may occur as a result of over stimulation, a release
an upcoming issue, I am asking for your favorite
links, plus stories and articles you have written yourself on the
* Home programs: this includes anything you have on ABA/IBI, OT, SLP,
Floortime, Miller method, Options, gfcf diet, sensory diet, swim
therapy, music therapy and anything you can think of. Hints for hiring
(and firing) employees...anything of that nature.
Nutrition and ASD
for all your support,
Thursday, August 16th at 2pm and 9pm est
to your time zone
TRANSCRIPTS FROM APRAXIA AND AUTISM AND ENZYMES CHATS AVAILABLE UPON REQUEST email@example.com
AUTISM AND ENZYMES -
Monday, August 20 at 9pm est to be repeated Wednesday, August 22 at 2pm
AND CHALLENGING BEHAVIORS (SELF INJURY AND VIOLENCE)
Aug 29 2:00pm est
Aug 30 2:00 pm est
Aug 23 9:00pm
Aug 28 2:00pm
soon: "How to Set Up a Home IBI
Program", "Autism and Essential Fatty Acids",
chats take place Mon-Fri at 2pm and 9 pm daily. If no one is in the
chat room when you get there...give it a chance. You never know who
might drop in!
chat instructions, please email the chat(s) you wish to attend to firstname.lastname@example.org