Challenges going to the playroom

Challenges going to the playroom

Postby Usha S » Tue Dec 21, 2010 8:58 am

I am new to this forum. My son Sriram is 14 years old and we have been doing the SR for quite some time. Lately, during the past two months or so, my son is refusing to go to the playroom and participate in the session with volunteers. We tried our best to keep the playroom more attractive and motivating for him, it still doesn't seem to help. If we request him to come to the playroom, he insists on sitiing in the living room couch. It appears that he wants to have complete control on what he wants to do. Since the living room is closer to the entrance, there are a lot of distractions for him and we are not able to provide him a distraction-free environment.

Also sometimes, he wets his pant instead of going to the toilet which he normally does. This happens occassionally though.

We are trying our best to provide him with the best environment with the unconditional love and accepting attitude and keep the playroom with minimal things that he likes so that it is not confusing for him.

We really need some help on overcoming this challenge.

Thanks,

Usha
Usha S
 
Posts: 6
Joined: Tue Dec 21, 2010 8:44 am

Re: Challenges going to the playroom

Postby BeckyDamgaard » Fri Jan 21, 2011 10:20 am

Hi Bibiana,

My name is Becky and I am a Son-Rise Program Teacher here at The Autism Treatment Center of America. You are doing so fabulously working on inspiring your son to go back into the playroom by making it motivating, so definitely keep going with that.

Another thing that you can try is locking all the doors to the other rooms so that there is nowhere else to go but into the playroom. I would also check out the area where he likes to hang out and see if there is anything that is more appealing to him in that room that you can bring into the playroom with you. I once worked with a child the same age as your son who wanted to stay in bed, when it was time to go in the playroom. I brought a matress and lots of blankets and pillows into the playroom so he could hang out in bed while I worked with him. You could experiment with bringing the couch cushions in the playroom or maybe different toys and snacks for him to keep it interesting.

The main thing is that you saty comfortable while he works through this. If there is any part of you, or your volunteers that is not relaxed about this situation then he will pick up on your need for him to be different and resist against it as a way to gain control. Also, check in with everyone in the team and make sure that they actually view the playroom as a fun place to be.

Can you give me some more information about his toileting situation and I will help you with your second question. Is there a toilet in the playroom? Or does he come out of the playroom to go to the toilet? How long has he been toilet trained? What is usually happening when he wets his pants and what do you do and say to him when it happens?


I look forward to hearing from you!
Warm regards,
BeckyDamgaard
 
Posts: 169
Joined: Tue Oct 19, 2010 1:51 pm

Re: Challenges going to the playroom

Postby Usha S » Mon Jan 24, 2011 6:38 am

Hi Becky,

Thank you very much for your reply. You have given me a good insight into the situation. Yes, sometimes I get anxious if my son refuses to go to the playroom and I have started taking it as it is and it is helping me these days. WE have also tried locking the doors and it is helping us. Thanks very much for your suggestions.

We have a couch in the hall/living room and my son Sriram prefers to lie down there all the time. In fact he eats and drinks also there. He loves music and prefers listening to his favourite songs than coming to the playroom. We tried keeping the music player away from him and he insists on getting it back. Would it be like going against him if we refuse to give him the music player what he wants?

Being autistic, he is resistive to any changes. Is it ok for us to move the couch from the living room to the play room? Our play room area is around 10'x12' and the couch would occupy 1/4th of the play room area. Is that Ok?

He is toilet trained and does use the toilet most of the time. However, occassionaly he wets his underpants. The toilet is outside and adjacent to his playroom. He has to come out of the playroom to go to the toilet.

One more thing is, he doesn't allow us to close the playroom door. whenever he is in the playroom. It looks like, he wants more control on things. Is it ok for us to leave the door open? We try as much as possible not to cause any kind of distraction while he is in the playroom so that his sessions are less distractful.

Thanks once again for your valuable suggestions and look forward to your reply,

Warm regards,

Usha
Usha S
 
Posts: 6
Joined: Tue Dec 21, 2010 8:44 am

Re: Challenges going to the playroom

Postby BeckyDamgaard » Wed Mar 30, 2011 5:35 pm

Hi Usha,

I'm so glad some of the suggestions are working. I recommend putting lots of cushions, pillows, including the couch cushions where he likes to sit into the playroom first. If he still wants to sit on the couch (even without the cushions) then by all means move it into the playroom with you (if you can manage it and it's not too disruptive). He probably enjoys the sensory aspect of being on the couch and the cushions, etc, will provide that for him.

With the music. Depending on how much help your child needs in connecting with people, I would guess he still needs work in this area seeing as he is being controlling at times, we recommend removing the music until later when he is more connected and has a longer interactive attention span. I would lock the sterio/Ipod away in a cupboard until you have achieved those things. Music can be very hypnotic for our children's already hypnotic, repetitious personality and is often not healthy for them.

The door is a boundary and it's really one of the few boundaries we do set in the playroom, If he were in school, he would not be able to have the classroom door open or leave when he wanted. Because we know the playroom will help him, believe that locking the door and taking the music is an act of love!

Look into getting a camping toilet and keeping it in the playroom. The one we use is called Portapotti265 and works great!

I wish you all the best!

Warm regards,.
BeckyDamgaard
 
Posts: 169
Joined: Tue Oct 19, 2010 1:51 pm

Re: Challenges going to the playroom

Postby Usha S » Thu Jul 21, 2011 6:50 am

Hi Becky,

As suggested by you we have moved the couch from living room to his play room and Sriram loves the play room now than any other room. He does not want to come even to the dining room for eating his food. We have 2 volunteers working with him and one of them is new. He spends most of the time in the couch lying down and sitting and he interacts in between his paper twisting or staring isms. He does paper twisting while lying down and we also follow his lead with lot of motivation. Sometimes lying down will continue through out the session. Is it ok that we also do the samething? How to make him participate in physical plays? His sleep pattern is good Is it ok to request him to get up and have conversation when there is a green light?

Please help me how to go further.

regards
Usha
Usha S
 
Posts: 6
Joined: Tue Dec 21, 2010 8:44 am

Re: Challenges going to the playroom

Postby BeckyDamgaard » Wed Jul 27, 2011 9:48 am

Hi Usha,

I am so thrilled! Wow, all he needed was his couch!

Everything you are doing sounds wonderful and yes, I would definitely encourage him to get up at times and participate with you once he is motivated. I want to suggest that instead of requesting him to get up and have a conversation with you when he gives you a green light that you entertain him first by building an activity that doesn't require him to do anything first.

When we get a green light, we either build from what he is doing or initiate something new. It will help him to build more of a rapport with you if you first have fun role modelling a game for him or entertaining him by doing a fun action and then when he is looking, smiling, paying attention, appears really interested in what you are doing (or any of the above), I would then invite him to physically participate.

I would need to know more about his language ability before recommending you start a conversation with him but in my opinion, it helps any child I'm working with to have them get up and moving and encouraging them to have some kind of role in the game. This helps them connect and invest more in the game and then I can add some conversation once I have an interactive attention span going. For example, he lies on the couch and then looks over at you as you join him. You could try jumping up and playing a harmonica for him, then as he continues to pay attention, add to the game by starting to dance as you play, once he is motivated, invite him to bang a drum with you while you play harmonica, or to dance with you.

If he enjoys it and plays the game with you, you can then go to working on language (for example, ask him which instrument he wants to play next, what song to sing, etc).

Have fun!
BeckyDamgaard
 
Posts: 169
Joined: Tue Oct 19, 2010 1:51 pm


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