Thursday, January 05, 2006

Shopping

I took The Boy into town today. I've been avoiding doing so because it's so busy with the sales, but I thought just a couple of shops might be alright.

But clearly even that was too much, because he started to get worried by all the noise and the people.

Into Boots we went, for some bits and pieces. We were heading for the tills when our path was blocked by a lady inspecting something on a shelf. The Boy told me she was in the way.

"Well, all you need to do is say, 'excuse me, please'." I said.

So he pushed passed her, and yelled up at her, "Excuse me!", with his face all cross.

"Well pardon me!" she said to him.

I couldn't quite believe it. I apologised to the poor woman, and she seemed ok, but I was horrified.

I've banned the television as punishment. But he doesn't seem to understand what he's done wrong. And I don't know if it's him truly being naughty, or if it's his autism. I don't know or have any other children to compare him to.

He looked like the rudest, nastiest little boy you'd ever hope not to meet when he did it, and I could see the woman thinking exactly that. But I know he's got no idea how to behave socially. No clue, unless it's something he's learned already, manually, if you see what I mean, by heart. Like saying sorry.

All the way down the road, I tried to explain what he'd done wrong, but he just doesn't understand the half of what I say to him. He knew he was in trouble, and so he kept saying and shouting sorry to/at me. But he clearly didn't know why he was sorry, it's just that he's learned when he's in trouble, he's expected to say it. No clue as to why, or what it means, even.

So was it bad behaviour to be punished, or is it partly the autism and not entirely his fault? I wish someone could tell me.

He keeps hitting himself to punish me for punishing him. I'm trying not to pay attention.

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