carberry [rsg3] Asperger’s syndrome

Hans aspergers. Apparently he called his patients, “little professors”

Rich (one of the 5 people I know read this blog on a regular basis is away this week doing a camp for Reality at Work. it is a Christian organization which dealing with young people who are on the edge. (my opinion not necessarily theirs)This way he deals with young people who have various thing that make life uneasy.

At carberry this week I had a guy in my group who had Asperger’s syndrome. It was my first experience of working with someone with Asperger’s syndrome. In Inverness years ago I had worked on a Social Work befriending project where I worked with a boy with Mild Autism. This guy was different. Being un prepared It was really hard to work with him.

He would often not respond if he didn’t have anything to say. Or the other reaction was just to walk off if he didn’t want to interact. Over the week though three incidents really showed him well.

1.
During a game of rounders he was involved in an accident where his head and the rounders bat collided. He was unhappy and lashed out at the boy with the bat. Then ran off. In that moment I saw the guy just as a normal teenage boy dealing with things as they happened as most teenage boys would. (You hit me I’ll hit you back)gross generalization I know but accurate

2.
One night we were using the eyetoy on the big screen. Awesome fun in a big group especially with the projector and sound system. (thanks Neil). The boy came in and sat down looking disinterested. As the game went on he got more and more into in his seat.
I asked if he wanted a shot once the list had quietened down.
He said yes, nervously.
When his shot came he was up like a shot knew what to do and how to do it. He loved it. He was excited and willing to react and interact to what the game threw at him. He did very well finishing in the top 5 of that game.
Then the second game stated. Again I asked if he wanted to play.
again he said yes, nervously.
The second game was a kung-fu style game and he was awesome, punching and Karate chopping his way through to being in the top 3 scores for the second games making him 4th overall.
good job.

3.
I went for breakfast.
He was playing at the front door.
I said “good morning”.
he said nothing.
I walked off.
I stopped as I heard his answer
“Go away. I don’t talk to you. I am A Robot” (in a buck rogers robotic style voice)

I laughed all through breakfast that morning, what a put down.

Yeah it was hard, and I was only interacting with him for perhaps 5 hours a day for a week, but the joy and fun definitely made it worthwhile.

One thought on “carberry [rsg3] Asperger’s syndrome

  1. well i am back from reality! (thought it was meant to be back to reality?)… the week was tough but good… not as tough as expected, which is slightly disappointing for some reason!
    The recprd of one young person indicated they had ADHD – but their behaviour didn’t match up, and myself and another teacher – using our training and experience – diagnosed mild Autism… maybe Aspergers. It is fascinating. There are so many key indicators that once understood are so obvious. I don’t really like labelling people though, but if we can understand people better we can best meet their needs.

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