It was National Nude day the other day and I thought to myself, nothing to write there really but then I remembered when my son was younger how he just hated having clothes on. It was never a rare moment for a toddler to suddenly walk through room completely starkers. If anyone visited I would have to go through a warning procedure a bit like the one you get at the beginning of a flight but without the lifejacket and less emphasis on emergency evacuation.
It was probably my fault, as a baby I always believed in him having a bit of nude time, free from a nappy and as nature really intended us to be really. He didn't enter into this world with clothes on which I'm glad about. He weighed enough at delivery without clothes and I wouldn't have wanted socks left behind in my womb. I used to look at him in a nappy and think it must be uncomfortable to wear that all the time. So off it came and he just rolled around a play mat, if he had a wee it was no big deal, everything was washable. At 17 he is less likely now to streak through the house but he still doesn't like the restriction of clothes. I think we all suffer that really but he will choose to stay in pyjamas all day if we have no plans or he changes into pj's as soon as we return from an outing. He's got the right idea, pj's or pg's as he calls them, are so comfy.
It's a sensory thing I'm sure, it's the same with labels in clothes, you think I'm going to say we have to cut them out because they are annoying but quite the opposite. My son was non verbal as a little boy and he loved the texture of clothes labels, they were shiny and smooth so he would run his fingers over them and hum, it made him feel relaxed. The same thing happened with the silky edge of a baby's blanket, he just loved the soft silky texture.
We forget about these sensory issues and how they have a massive effect on daily life. We tend to take things away because we have to go somewhere or we have to start concentrating at school. What if that object is vital for comfort or to help our kids learn? I'm thinking we should leave it where it is. The Peanuts cartoon character Linus always comes to mind, he carry's his blanket everywhere and sucks his thumb doesn't he? They get trailed behind and get very tatty eventually these cellular blankets as you can see from my photo, what you can't see is that it is dropping to pieces and is more holy than the present Pope. It has been well loved and used a lot, I'm sure also like the Pope.
I am a strong believer in using these sensory issues as a positive thing and not to stop them. Obviously it depends on the issue. My son is also very 'touchy feely' so we have to curve that to a certain extent to prevent him getting into any trouble but to still allow him to use it a little. I never tell him to get dressed if he doesn't feel like it, if I do he will ask where we are going, and quite right too. Why should anyone get out of there pyjamas if not venturing outside. I tend to bother less about what other people think, you gain that skill as you go through life with Autism. The stares from certain behaviours and meltdowns, yep you know! If it works for us we stick with it because it means that we can cope. That's what it is all about, coping mechanisms and feeling happy.
I hope by chatting about some of my experiences I'm helping to make you feel ok about Autism. Obviously if you'd like to ask me anything please feel free to leave a comment below or on my Facebook page. Always ask yourself one thing when you are thinking 'my son/daughter won't do this or that?' Do they really have to? Or is it society telling you that's what needs to be done. Most of the time society dictates a little too much from us in this world of Autism so we have to just change the rules slightly. Give it a go and see what happens.
Thanks for reading and I will be back for 'Pass the Remote' tomorrow. Wow don't these weeks fly at the moment? It doesn't seem five minutes since we were talking about last weeks TV. Hey we will have the news of the new Doctor so come back for that.
Take care for now........
Every Saturday will be about Autism, family and life.