From my interactions with people on the autistic spectrum I have come to understand that there are times when no more words can be processed. The brain is too busy sorting out the jumble of messages that it has received. At that point communication may be shut down, and when the person is ready, may be more effective by other means.
It struck me yesterday that this may also be true for Bubble, who disassociates frequently. H and I decided to try out a different way of giving her more control over telling us how she is feeling.
This morning Bubble and Squeak drew some faces: angry, scared, sad, and happy. They then suggested some techniques – tried and tested over the years – which may help.
They bluetacked them on a board, and then had a practice, taking turns to pick a face and bring it to one of us. We then suggested they select a possible solution from the board, and go and try it. They then returned to tell us if it had worked.
The trial run went ok. Squeak was extremely dramatic. Bubble was a little more tentative. Situation normal.
We hope that it will help the girls to feel more in control of naming their emotions, sharing them, and seeking a solution.
Time will tell. As the workplace posters say: if you keep doing what you’ve always done, you’ll get what you’ve always got. So we’re trying something different. We’ll see how it goes.