Figuring out what was going on

When my son started school, and we had to put on socks and shoes everyday, I realised that there might be something else going on. It would sometimes take me 30 minutes of putting them on and taking them off. I would get so frustrated but I could see from his reaction - he was petrified - that this wasnt just something he was putting on! It frightened me (for him) that he would cry, sob, shake and cling to me as if something terrible was happening. It was if I was putting crawling spiders on him!

There had been a few other things we had noticed like he didnt like to wear long trousers, he refused to wear tshirts with patterns - had to be plain tshirts, labels would drive him crazy, he wouldnt go into a party room and would miss out on a friends party completely! We used to wonder what was wrong with him! Eventually out of frustration, i went to the doctor who referred us to an occupational therapist.

Amy the OT, was our saving grace. All other disorders have been ruled out, he just has some sensitivities. The OT was able to reassure me that this was real and he wasnt making it up, she reassured him that he was Ok and that she understood how he felt, and we worked through some solutions to help him. From then on, I was able to keep my cool as I now understood a little of how he felt.

We still have lots of challenges, thick bed sheets will have him sitting on the floor refusing to get into bed, he goes through winter in shorts and a t-shirt, sometimes shorts go on and go off, he washes his hands too much. Most importantly, I have learnt to listen to him, and he has learnt to trust me and tell me what hes feeling. We still have lots of tears. He knows he is highly sensitive and this helps him understand his reactions. I can only hope that as he gets older (he is 8 now) he will learn how to handle these feelings. This website has been great for me too.

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