Why does my son avoid the baby?

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Aspie1
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04 Jun 2022, 3:11 pm

Pteranomom wrote:
Since then I have tried mentioning to both of them how they love and accept their grandfather, even though he has ALS, which makes him look and sound different (and he drools and chokes while eating and a variety of other unpleasantries.) They're used to him because he's been that way their whole lives, and they know that despite his appearance, he's still a person inside. Likewise, even though the baby is funny looking, we should still try to be polite around it.

That's a good analogy. That said, most aspie kids have an easier time relating to the elderly than to babies, because aspie kids are old souls themselves. So they find the gray hair, wrinkles, and other aspects of the elderly less grating to their senses than aspects of babies.

Here's another idea: have you considered introducing your son to puppies and kittens? Say, in an animal shelter or a pet expo. Most aspie kids like pets, and do extremely well with analogies. So if your son likes dogs, you can show him a litter of wrinkly-looking, clumsy-walking puppies, then explain that they're baby dogs, just like his little bother is a baby person. Puppies want to be functional dogs, but can't, and still have to learn how. Similarly, his brother is learning to be a functional human, but isn't there yet. (Saying "you were a baby once" won't work; very few people remember their life before age 3.)

If cute puppies with floppy ears, soft fur, and little paws won't melt his heart, then my name is Kamala Harris!



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05 Jun 2022, 10:27 pm

That's a cute idea. Thank you.



MagicMeerkat
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12 Jun 2022, 11:11 am

Babies are loud, smelly, messy and unpredictable.


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12 Jun 2022, 12:03 pm

Pteranomom wrote:
He is upset by the idea of the baby eating. I understand why a kid might find breast-feeding icky, but he also runs away if his brother is eating mushy veggies with a spoon, or if I so much as mention giving the baby a bottle.

Your son is certainly old enough that he might find breast feeding embarrassing, and it could be that the baby eating with its mouth open is icky to him.
I know that has grossed me out.

Pteranomom wrote:
He seems to get angry sometimes when I talk to the baby; yesterday he broke a plastic spoon in anger when he heard me telling the baby he's a cutie.

I have asked if he is jealous and he says no; I've asked if he thinks I sound stupid when I'm doing the baby voice and he said no, etc. He can't or maybe won't offer any explanation for his behavior.


It could still be jealousy, and that either he doesn't want to admit it, or he might not even have realized it himself.
He might also deny finding it stupid, because he doesn't want to hurt your feelings. I know I've always found the way some people talk to children condescending and stupid. (Sorry, I hope that's not upsetting or offensive. Just the honest opinion I had during my childhood, and frankly still do.)


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17 Jun 2022, 1:36 am

MagicMeerkat wrote:
Babies are loud, smelly, messy and unpredictable.

Not mine! He smells nice, has a bath every day, and cries less than his brother. He does try to chew on everything, though.



Sweetleaf
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17 Jun 2022, 2:09 am

Uhh I just feel bad cause when I was a kid, I ended up having to look after my baby brother. And I hate that it created some resentment because at 12 or 13 that stuff should not have been my responsibility. But if my parents werent at home they tried to push I was in charge, but I was not good at that. Still had to change most my little brothers diapers that summer because my siblings just outright refused and I knew he couldn't just stay in a soiled diaper so of course I would change it but it just felt unfair always being the one to do it when my mom technically said they should help me. but we were probably all to young to have so much responsibility to take care of our baby brother. I just had enough morals or whatever i knew he couldn't just stay in a gross diaper so yeah even if it wasn't fair I always ended up being the one to do it because my siblings just absolutely refused but I knew he needed a diaper change and morally just could not let him continue on in a nasty soiled diaper so of course I had to change it. But yeah that is part of why I do not want kids, like some of my plans where denied or ignored because my mom needed me to watch the baby. So like I did get some resentment towards him, and I know it is not fair cause he was just a baby and now he's almost an adult and I greet him and give him hugs. But like I still feel bad that for a time I kind of resented him, but it's unfair too like he didn't make my mom make me take care of him when I was a teen none of it is his fault. So would be unfair to hold it against him...I suppose I just wonder what he thinks of me cause of meltdowns and such I had in front of family. but idk seems he is glad to see me when I come around, but like Idk how to broach the topic of any resentment I had was just that I was only 12 and wasn't great at taking care of my mothers baby but was expected to so yeah I got frusterated but I love him he is my brother.

But yeah idk it is just like I want to tell him if I seemed flustered and such having to take care of him, it wasn't his fault it was my mom just putting too much on me and I have always loved him. Like he is my little bro, so of course I care about him. It is just being 12 trying to take care of him when my mom was away was hard, and created a little resentment. but I feel so bad of ever feeling resentment towards my baby brother, cause none of it was ever his fault. Like he did not choose to be born just to cause his sister stress, he just got borne and my mother did not have a great plan for ensuring his care so she put it on me. Which well is not right I was barely a preeteen and expected to take care of a baby. LIke good god glad nothing went wrong but yeah I don't even know what made my mom think teenage me was proper childcare...a lot of well you are just obligated to help. And of course once my siblings used it against me cause my cousin mentioned maybe taking us to a party and well I really wanted to go because I had not gone to any parties before. But my mom needed someone to watch my brother and I even begged my siblings and cousin...like can't one of you do it, I neveer got to go to a party and would really like to experience it. But both my other sibllings inisted on being the ones to go, and so I got stuck watching my brother again. I just thought I had taken the hit for some of them before so this one time maybe I could get to do something fun with one of them taking on the baby brother duty. But of couurse at the end I was the one to go watch my brother, probably my sister and cousin thought I'd harm their chances for boys so where ok with me being left out.


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Pteranomom
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17 Jun 2022, 7:17 pm

I have definitely never asked my son to watch the baby. Only my eldest--who is 14 and quite warm toward the little guy--has watched him for a few minutes while I use the toilet. Heck, my kids don't even clean up after their pets--I do it. (And I'm fine with that.)



Aspie1
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17 Jun 2022, 9:57 pm

Pteranomom wrote:
I have definitely never asked my son to watch the baby. Only my eldest--who is 14 and quite warm toward the little guy--has watched him for a few minutes while I use the toilet. Heck, my kids don't even clean up after their pets--I do it. (And I'm fine with that.)
Would your 12-year-old be comfortable simply reading to the baby? Babies don't understand speech, but they understand attention and tone of voice. So reading to them is a good bonding tactic that's highly unlikely to trigger sensory issues in an aspie preteen. It can be almost anything, as long as it's not scary to little kids and interesting for your 12-year-old to read, even magazine articles on his topic of interest.

Just check on him periodically, so he doesn't use scary voices while reading out of jealousy or resentment. Or have the 14-year-old read with him together; this'll work especially well if the story has male characters in dialog, where your older sons can pick one or more characters and read their lines. And maybe ask the eldest son to persuade his bother to be kinder to the baby, at least outwardly. Being close in age and same sex, I'm sure he can do it more effectively than an adult woman.



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18 Jun 2022, 1:24 pm

That's a very cute idea, thank you.



MagicMeerkat
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18 Jun 2022, 3:04 pm

Pteranomom wrote:
MagicMeerkat wrote:
Babies are loud, smelly, messy and unpredictable.

Not mine! He smells nice, has a bath every day, and cries less than his brother. He does try to chew on everything, though.



He could still be loud, messy and unpredictable.


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