Saturday, March 5, 2011

The Social Network

Shhhhh.... can you hear that?  It's the sound of all three children playing in the other room - together...or as together as they can be - and not outwardly annoying and/or torturing each other.

I can guarantee this moment of bliss will not last.....

Dang, already over.

Carissa the 11 year old is yelling at the 4 year old.  The 4 year old is growling back at her.  For once, Sean is not the issue.

I remember all those time of being asked how Sean plays.  What were the words?  Cooperative and ????  I don't know.  Parallel? 

It was always so important to whatever professional I was consulting with at the time. 

Years ago Carissa would bring out her My Little Ponies castle and set it up in the living room.  She had tens of little ponies and little pony accessories that you would eventually lose track of only to step on in the middle of the night.  Sean would bring out his tank and shoot at the castle.  He especially like when the ponies attempted to escape in their hot air balloon.

Each child was doing their own thing but they were together. 

I never knew how that scene - which occurred so often in my house - would be categorized.

With all the technology available for today's youth, do kids even know how to play together?  Play cooperatively like the professionals want?

Sean's learning....  baby steps.  It takes alot of prompting.  It takes alot of listening.  He's doing better.  When he's at the computer, he no longer shoves his sister away from him.  Sean even lets Ashley order him around for a time on Wii Ski.  The other day, Ashley actually asked to play with him!


But, for the most part, he prefers to be on his own.  Reading, playing video games, listening to his MP3 player, researching things on Wikipedia (I told him he had to find a hobby other than picking at his skin - he chose Wikipedia - yea for me!).   He's absolutely content to be engrossed in his own thoughts, the sole inhabitant of his own world.

A couple of years ago I worked a junior high dance at the local park district.  Along one wall sat five or six girls.  Each with a cellphone.  Each texting the other.

My nieces did the same thing after Christmas dinner this past year.

You have to wonder sometimes what's a trait of autism and what has become the "norm" for the current generation.

Sean may not be the only one that has difficulty socializing....

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