There's trouble in the flower garden.....
Daisy and I recently transplanted ourselves to a new location and a new start. After all the problems at the beginning of this year, I simply couldn't stay where I was; the thorns were too troublesome and the memories and constant reminders of the past....well, I didn't want to be constantly reminded.
So, we discussed it and we both agreed that transplanting was a good idea. I knew it would be tough on Daisy but I felt that it would be tougher if we had stayed where we were.
So we up-rooted ourselves and travelled. It was tough, and we wilted a bit and wondered if we were really doing the right thing, but the dye was cast and we both rose to the challenge.
If I had been asked "how's everything going?" on Monday of this week, I would have smiled and said that it was all going perfectly, our new life was going exactly in the direction we both wanted and although there will always be challenges with an Autistic child, they aren't new or different or anything we haven't faced before.....
If you had asked me on Tuesday, however, I would not have smiled because it has, in the space of 24 hours, gone a bit runny.
Daisy has made friends with the local children. She went for tea at theirs, we fed them at ours.....just like it should be. Just like NT children. My Daisy was doing NT stuff with NT kids.....happy me! Happy Daisy. She was even relaxed enough to tell them (and parents of her choice) that "I have Autism". How, I thought to myself can it get any better. The children and the parents seemed to accept her and told me how nice she is.....
How quickly the seeds of unwanted plants have spread to my Garden of Eden. I find to my horror that the local children are now, seemingly, going out of their way to mercilessly bully my poor little Daisy.
Her crime? Well, I admit she was kind of wrong, in that she bit a boy younger than her. He and an older boy, for reasons unknown to me, were pinning her down. Unable to get away, she reverted to what she always does when panic-stricken and restrained. She bit. She does it to me every time I have to keep her safe.
The moral dilemma that some might see here, is that maybe I should have mentioned that Daisy is violent and aggressive when she feels "cornered", but how the Hell could I have known what would happen? I am also loathe to advertise the bad bits of her Autism as, let's face it, it's going to colour someone else's opinion of her......
Anyhow....the next day she goes out to play as usual to be confronted with out and out hostility by almost all the local children that she played with. They were rude and mildly aggressive to her and deeply hostile. They used words against her that children should certainly not use against one another.
This behaviour has continued every day this week. Daisy is now reluctant to go out and play, and when she does pluck up the nerve, she returns in tears...she is unhappy about going out and really needs me with her....not the steps towards independence that I was hoping for.
It has been witnessed that an older boy seemed to be approaching her with the intention of scaring her....but he was prevented by the arrival of the Head Gardener who intervened merely by his presence.
I cannot approach the parents of the children as I do not know them, and Daisy does not know where they live, and although I do believe her, I have to have proof that a particular child is behaving in a hostile/nasty way to her. I don't want to accuse someone of something they haven't done....
I cannot quite comprehend the severity of the hostility of the children towards Daisy. I know that she shouldn't have bitten, but she shouldn't have been pinned down, and the parent of the bitten child should have come to me (they all know my Daisy; once seen never forgotten and all the children know where she lives!) and discussed it with me. They didn't.
Now we have some weird Lord of the Flies thing going on here.....OK, that might be a bit over the top, but the children have seemingly taken the law into their own hands and are meting out their own type of punishment. They actively seek her out to taunt her and tell her to "fuck off". Yet she is not approaching them......
It is hard to watch her learn this very painful lesson. She (as I) does not think that the punishment fits the crime but is not allowed to offer any kind of reparation.
Is this how it is with NT children? Her cuddlies who are real as you or I to her have been taken from her and "hurt", she has "accidently-on-purpose" been run into by a pushbike and her feelings have been severely damaged along with her very fragile self-confidence.
Well, we are both a bit fed-up with it. If this is what mixing with NT children are like, then I think we need to reconsider who we make friends with.
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4 weeks ago