I am very new to this whole world, and have a few questions that maybe someone can help me find answers for. We have a 4.5 yo boy who has not been diagnosed but several practitioners have suspected (as do we) that he is on the spectrum. However, you wouldn't necessarily know this when you first meet him. He's in preschool. He can be interactive and even charming. He doesn't do typical 'isms.' His biggest challenges, and our biggest concerns, involve feeling empathy, forming close bonds, and experiencing his emotions. He doesn't let in our love very easily, never says "I love you," recoils from kisses, doesn't show spontaneous affection, gets overwhelmed by strong feelings, and truly does not seem to get the concept of other people having feelings that need to be respected. This, despite a very nurturing and loving home environment (and no TV). He has hit and shoved classmates repeatedly the last 3 years. He doesn't seem to "hear" that when he's hurting someone he needs to stop. He gets easily "triggered" and becomes rigid and disconnected. In that state, there really is nothing we can do to reach him. He was evaluated by the ESD and qualifies for special ed based on PDD in the social/emotional realms so he's had someone in his preschool classroom once a week this year helping him work with the kids. He's made great progress, but he's still at the point where I need to watch him constantly when he's around other kids (or our cat) to keep them safe. My question: could the Son-Rise program be useful in our situation? How would we ever get him to stay in a playroom when he's been out and about in the world for 3 years? He loves to play outside, running around and digging in the dirt--how could we confine him to a playroom? Would we really be able to help him with empathy and emotional connections? We've spoken with a counselor at the Option institute and they want us to come to the June training. We live in OR and we could swing it but it would certainly be a HUGE investment of time, energy and money for us to do this. I guess there are just so many avenues to pursue and I want to have some confidence that this one would really pay off before I jump in. Are there families who have been in our shoes we could speak with? Can anyone give me some feedback on my questions?