Excerpts from the book (2% indicates location in the Kindle version of the book, instead of page numbers.)
2% For over two years, our days consisted of surviving tantrums of epic proportions. They were epic in terms of both duration and the ferocity of the frustration and anger that was being unleashed by Dale due to his inability to communicate with us on any level. Dale had no idea who we were and we feared we would never be able to reach him.
< My Thoughts > “…no one would listen to me for another two years, when finally, aged almost four, Dale was diagnosed with classical autism.”
Laura Crane (2015) from the University of London explains that parents “usually waited
a year from when they first had concerns about their child’s development before they sought professional help. On average, there was a delay of around 3.5 years from the point at which parents first approached a health professional with their concerns to the confirmation of an autism spectrum disorder diagnosis.”
2% Dale had no idea who we were, and we feared we would never be able to reach him.
< My Thoughts> “Dale had no idea who we were…”
There are many articles on the ‘signs of autism’ in a child,
but professional articles are scarce. Often this oddity of not recognizing or responding to parents, siblings, or caregivers is embedded in ‘Red Flag Lists’. For instance, early signs in babies…
- doesn’t make eye contact when being fed
- doesn’t smile back
- doesn’t respond to familiar voice or to their name when called
- doesn’t try to get your attention, other than in an extreme way… tantrum, screaming, or other disturbing behavior
- appears disinterested in what is going on around them… or, who is with them
- seems not to hear (often parent rush to have child’s hearing checked, only to find that is not the problem)
2% …at a children’s Christmas party…Dale reacted as though Santa himself was a monster… Dale clung to me as though his very life depended on it.
On witnessing my son’s reaction, a nursing colleague gave me a word that made sense of Dale to her, but it left me feeling as though she had just told me my son had cancer.
She said Dale reminded her of a group of children she had worked with in the past, and they were autistic.