Asperger's Syndrome: how do you tell your child he has Asperger's?
Here's a big confession: I have already written about the fact that my 9-year-old son was diagnosed in February 2005 with Asperger's Syndrome. However, what I haven't said is that I have not yet told my son that he has Asperger's. I am not even sure where I would begin. When we went 90 miles away for his 3-hour appointment with specialists, his father and I told him it was his 8-year-old check up. I don't want to make him self-conscious about some of his behavioral tics: his repetitive running and humming. He doesn't want to think of himself as different, so how do I tell him that he has a disorder which means he is very different?
However, I have been wondering lately whether I need to tell him something. He has been having me work with him on
his math problems, and I’m supposed to time him. He knows the math, but he is not able to give the answers as fast as
the timing test requires. He has modifications that mean that he is not penalized for not knowing how to do this. Of
course, he does not know he has modifications, because he does not know why he goes to Mrs. M’s room. To him, he just
does. So tonight when he asked me for the results of his test, he got upset when he didn’t perform well, and upset when
I refused to time him anymore.
How have you told your children about diagnoses such as Asperger’s, Autism, Tourette’s, etc.? When do you tell them? What do you say? And how do the children react?