Breathe…Baby…Breathe

Living with a child who has Asperger’s is like living with a football referee…or anyone who wants to control everyone around themselves. Tell people what to do, point out when they screw up and blow a whistle on any behavior that doesn’t jive with your world view.

Tonight I had four extra kids here while their mom went to a meeting. Lovely kids…close friends…but Colin totally wigged out cause I allowed them to play Mario Kart on the Wii, which is his domain and he is undoubtedly the expert in all things Mario.

Taking turns was tough, but they worked it out alone. We have only two Wii remotes and two Wii wheels, so Colin had to take turns with two others. The schedule of play they worked out was fair…”It’s a nice pattern, mom” he says.

However, he didn’t stop talking, advising, yelling, cadjoling or subtitling the whole event. Commentary included…
“NO!!! You messed up!”
“That’s great! Oh WOW!”
“Don’t go that way…you’re so stupid!”
“Gimme that…you don’t know what you’re doing!”

Here’s the conversation we had:

Me: “Babe, you can’t always tell people what to do. Let them play by themselves.”
Him: “But they don’t know how to do it!” Stomp feet…thrust fists down at sides.
Me: “They have fun anyway, it’s okay if they don’t win or if they mess up.”
Him: “But they are slow! They can’t do it right! They push the left button instead of the “A” button and the whole thing stops working!”
Me: “But that’s okay baby…they don’t care. It’s fun anyway.”
Him: “AAARRggghhh…..”

Here’s my imagined conversation:
Him: “Why won’t anyone listen to me? I know what I’m doing.”
Me: “We’ll listen, but won’t always do what you want.”
Him: “Why not”
Me: “Cause we all have different ways of doing things.”
Him: “But why…it’s dumb”
Me: “It’s how the world works buddy. Everyone does things and says things and sometimes we don’t like that…but you can’t always be right. Not about everything.”
Him: “But I AM RIGHT!!! ALWAYS!!!!”
Me: “No you’re not…Breathe, Baby, Breathe.”

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7 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Gabrielle Bryden
    Feb 04, 2010 @ 23:42:51

    Love this post. You are describing my aspie son again. Professor Tony Attwood says that aspie’s are so controlling that everyone around them starts to be more aspie because it’s easier to join them than change them.

    Reply

  2. asdmommy
    Feb 05, 2010 @ 01:50:57

    OHMYGOSH! This is so my C as well. We have had that EXACT same conversation about that EXACT same topic (Mario is all the rage over here too). It’s difficult, and they just don’t get it.

    I think the Mommies need to breathe too….lol!

    Reply

  3. transitionalthoughts
    Feb 05, 2010 @ 04:04:49

    Well, and I thought I was alone with an all-controlling Aspie and the Wii Mario Kart! LOL
    Thanks for posting!

    Reply

  4. Corrie
    Feb 07, 2010 @ 15:44:27

    I’m curious if you had this conversation at a different time when he was ready to hear it? I found that when I know something like this might be a problem, I talk with Jonathan ahead of time. We talk about what makes a good friend and what doesn’t make a good friend. We talk about how God wants us to treat others the way we want to be treated and he’ll usually agree he doesn’t like to be treated the way he treats others.

    This isn’t a quick fix. It is years of school and home reinforcing this type of behavior and talking about it during times when he’s ready to hear it.

    Reply

  5. joy
    Feb 14, 2010 @ 11:35:50

    I see that one of your most read posts is something called “Do Women Have Nose Hair?” — I’m going to have to check it out.

    Sounds like you’re a pretty darn decent referee and I applaud your stamina!

    p.s. Welcome to the SITS community!

    Reply

  6. greedygrace
    Feb 14, 2010 @ 12:19:57

    I think all kids have moments like this, and we all need to take a moment to breathe!

    I came by to welcome you to SITS! We’re happy to have you with us!

    Reply

  7. Ann
    Feb 16, 2010 @ 00:13:17

    Your kindness is refreshing! Thanks for sharing “real” moments with your son. So many people want to make everything perfect, but life isn’t prefect. (Thank goodness)

    Welcome to SITS!

    Hey, I’m hosting a little giveaway….Hint, there is chocolate involved. 😀 Come on over!

    Reply

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