mom of a teen
by Deb E.
My son is fifteen years old, he has issues with sounds, smells and touch. Not having this information when he was little I just had to go with my gut. We had a mini-tramp in our basement along with a swing we hung from the rafters- he wore them out.
Food has always been an issue - nothing cooked and the only meat was "chicken" hence everything we gave him was chicken. He still prefers very plain foods and will only eat cooked potatoes - all other veggies are raw. Because of peer pressure he finally learned to each things with sauces - like pizza and spaghetti in seventh grade - he doesn't eat them at home but will eat at least some things when he is out.(no condiments ever)
His friend's parents were always kind and fed him what he liked - they were very aware of his issues with noise and he only went to play at homes that weren't too messy, smelly or noisy anyway. (His choice)Clothing - the only kid I know who swam in his socks, is still an issue - nothing can be too tight or too loose, the material has to be just right.
I now buy one item at a time- if he likes it and demonstrates that he will wear it, I buy it in a variety of colors - that he has to approve. He doesn't have very many clothes or shoes because of this. Shoes - they are the absolute worst thing we deal with.
Finding toothpaste and shampoo took some time but we did and he still uses the same things. The real problem came when he had to use deodorant and lotions for his acne. We've worked through those with much trial and error.
My advice is don't force anything - be patient. I did feel like a short order cook for a long time but, at least for him, his issues have lessened enough and we have found enough compromises that he functions "normally". Again, be patient, be aware and back off. That's how we've made it so far. Kissing someone may be a huge problem but I'm all about waiting on that for as long as we can!