Do You Regret Having Your Aspie Child?

A week ago, I had a very painful and difficult interaction with my teen-age, Aspie Son over  the ordinary chore of putting away the washed dishes. This escalated quicker than normal into a rather violent outburst. He screamed unkind and terribly disrespectful things in my face, then turned to stomp around the kitchen screaming and pounding his fist on the counter-tops. It felt as though all of his frustrations in life poured out over me and our kitchen.

While I wouldn’t say this is a usual occurrence, it is also not unusual. It frightened my two younger daughters, ages 5 and 6. It upset his 12 NT brother, The Bear. Afterwards, The Bear asked me, “Do you ever regret having Daniel?”

Yesterday, the following statement was made on a Facebook Group Page of which I am a memeber:

“I met a mum recently who told me she “hated” her son with asperger’s. To me, I was very sad for him and for her…her hating her own kid – of course that’s wrong and horrible – but I wonder how many parents out there do feel that way.”

There is a dark side to raising a child with these challenges. My son’s honest expressions can be downright mean. He will say that I am lazy. He will say that I don’t ever do anything. He will say that I am selfish or a hypocrite. Of course, he is a teenager and I am sure from his narrow perspective what he says is truth.

Meltdowns are more frequent now than in the past. The physicality associated with his meltdowns now reminds me of when he was 3, more than when he was 10. These meltdowns are more disturbing and scary in the body of a 5’11” young man than they were in a small child. The glimmers of the sweet boy I remember are few and far between.

There are a lot of aspects of life that we as humans do not include in the stories we pass down. We don’t talk about the messier and darker aspects of common life occurrences. A great example is our tendency to remain silent on the terrifying nature of postpartum depression and psychosis. We don’t want to admit that even the most joyful parts of life can come with a dark lining.

As a parent of an Apsie child, I live in a strange world. Strangers do not understand and even from friends and family there can be a lot of judgement. I have been told that I am not consistent enough with my son. I have been told that I am not disciplined enough. Even when there is no overt comment, there is the change in body language, tone of voice and the distancing by people who are affronted by my son.

On the other hand, my son judges me as inadequate, unfair, lazy and hypocritical. He expresses hatred for the help that I sacrifice to give him. I stand in the middle making the decisions as best I know how. This is an emotionally draining position.

My NT son sees all of this and so he asks if I regret having my Aspie Son.

“No!” I responded without hesitation, “Raising [my Aspie Son] is challenging and there are times that he can be such a jerk but I have learned so much about myself and life through this process. I have learned to look beyond the external and set aside a lot of my preconceived judgements. I have learned to make my decisions based on who I am and who I want to be, not based on what that decision will get from others in the way of approval, acceptance, etc. It has made me so much stronger. I am proud of the person I have become and if this is the road that it took to become this person, well that is fine. I love him because he is my son, not because of what he can give me and I believe that he is an amazing person traveling his own tough road.”

That statement reflects the decision I have made. I don’t always feel the feelings that would inspire that statement therefore I don’t despise the mother that said she hated her son. I am thankful that my NT son didn’t ask me 20 minutes earlier. I don’t know that I would have regained my balance enough to answer the way I did. Just because I don’t act on the dark moments doesn’t mean they don’t exist.

Do you ever feel dark moments? Do you have a safe person you can confide in? How do you regain your balance in those moments?

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About aspergersmom

I am a 35 year old woman. I am the wife of an amazing man, who keeps me sane. As a recent California/Florida transplant to the midwest and the mother to a combined family of 6 children; 3 boys, 3 girls, my life is an adventure. I blog and raise our family with my best friend.
This entry was posted in Asperger Traits, Challenges, Dark moments. Bookmark the permalink.

9 Responses to Do You Regret Having Your Aspie Child?

  1. Judi Herring says:

    I have a 9 year old aspie daughter (she is my only). Today I am in tears because i’ve reached a breaking point. I’ll get back up again, but today.. It is a darker day. I have found comfort reading your posts because they remind me i’m not alone in this experience of raising an aspie child. You explain so clearly what it is like to navigate through this unique world. I am at a point where I have a need for much support and its so hard to find. But I won’t give up. I wont give up on.. me.. on her… on finding the bridge that brings us closer together. Thanx for your writing.

    • aspergersmom says:

      This comment made me cry. I have been where you are! I know that feeling SO very well! To think that my posts in any way were a comfort or a help brings tears to my eyes. You are not alone. You are strong and brave. You are exactly the example your daughter needs to grow into the strong, brave woman who can walk her path. Thank you for this comment. I really needed it today. Thank you!

    • The captain's mum says:

      I have been there. Many times. I have even thought in my darkest moments that, had there been a prenatal test for autism, I would have terminated my pregnancy.
      But on a day like today, when my 7yo Aspy son is sharing his favourite parts of a book on Aspergers with his Dad, I’m glad there wasn’t.
      (Getting myself on the right antidepressants helped a lot too…)
      You are not alone, not at all ♥

  2. Homeforthebewildered says:

    Never ever ever. We call our Rory – Rory Bear or The Bear. I have three boys. Eldest has Spina Bifida and Hydrocephalus but is NT. 2nd guy is Aspie and is becoming increasingly violent. Third guy is NT. I would never ever be without any of them ever.
    xC

  3. aspergersmom says:

    Thank you everyone for your contribution here! They are truly wonderful to read!

  4. Tammi says:

    I am in a very dark place and my failure as a parent is ever present. Thank you for helping me see that I’m not alone. Now to get up again and move on after a horrible night with my son. As I sit here with puffy eyes from all the crying. I grieve for the son I don’t have and wish I did.

    • aspergersmom says:

      You are not alone! Everyone one of us has lots of these moments. Sometimes the moments seem more present then the bright moments. Keep reaching out for help. It is out there! Connect with others for support, encouragement and ideas. Join a Facebook group if you are physically isolated. We are bonded by our love for our children and our struggles.

  5. Confused Dad says:

    I stumbled upon your blog today as I was searching the internet for answers. Answers I can’t find myself anymore. My wife and I have 3 daughters, the oldest is 6 and is an Aspie. We went through a period of about a year when things were going really well with her. This was after her diagnosis and we began learning how to parent a child with more patience than punishment. Lately things have not seemed to be good for a long time with her. I love my daughter with every ounce of my heart and soul. I have found myself in dark places lately, though.

    Do I have regrets? Am I doing everything wrong? Is it my fault? The logical answer to all of these questions is “no”. The weight of reality wants me to believe otherwise sometimes. We thought we had everything figured out for awhile and during the past year we seem to have completely done a regression to the way she acted when she was three. I’m venting. I don’t frequent these types of blogs, nor do I ever comment, but I appreciate the information and thoughts you put out there. It is reassuring sometimes knowing that it doesn’t necessarily make one bad for having these feelings from time to time.

    • aspergersmom says:

      I am glad that my blog resonated with you. I wish I could say it will get better. I can say the rewarding moments will be all the more rewarding because of the struggles. This is our love for our children.

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