Typically you will find Kaden is a quiet person....he doesn't make a scene normally, he likes staying close to home and to himself. He sometimes makes blunt comments to us and even to people he doesn't know because he is brutally honest. He's also EXTREMELY passionate about whatever it is he is creating, building, reading or learning. He has recently learned to be more compassionate to fellow Humans.....yes this is new as of the past several months or so. He has always cared and loved animals way more then people...but we are finally making the list of cherished ones in his life now. YAY for us!!!
The thing that amazes me Most though is for a child that is extremely logic based and has everything in his life categorized as black or white he has an immense love for Jesus Christ. It's not uncommon for me to find him reading and studying the Bible. He knows what it means to be a Christian and has accepted Christ in his heart. He has full Faith and Believes in the Lord, but that's where the road ends everything else in his life must be concrete and logical. When I ask him about God he explains him as a being, more then a feeling...he is concrete in Kaden's eyes. He has a relationship with God the way I did when I was little....he was my Friend and Heavenly Father. I see the same relationship forming with Kaden.
For the most part Kaden is so sweet and kind and all of his deficits caused by him having Autism are things we can live with. All but one thing, his anger towards himself and what manifested a few weeks ago into hurting me. He has never hurt someone else in that way before. And since then he has prayed about it and has tried to wrap his head around what had happened. This was no easy task for any of us as we think about the future with Kaden. What will it be like 10 years from now, even 5 years from now.
To begin with we have to have a plan and be consistent with it. And of course together as his parents we decided that any and all violent behaviors exhibited deserves punishment. For the behavior he had towards me last week we decided he would not be able to play any video game on his computer, tablet or game system for a week. Also, he was not allowed tv unless we were watching a Family movie together. For some of you that may not seem like a harsh enough consequence for what he did and others may think it was too harsh. But, we carefully took into consideration where he sees violent behavior and where he zones out...that would be video games. And when I say violent I'm talking about Minecraft....and that's not really a picture of violence, but there is killings and fighting even though we are talking about pixelated blocks. Also, some of the shows he watches like SpongBob and Tom and Jerry may also fuel the behavior. We did it for a week because he may almost be 9, but in his world when it comes to time he is roughly 4 or 5 years old. Anything longer then a week would totally not be beneficial. Another thing I want to clarify is that I do not think the shows or games are Bad and is causing him this behavior. What I believe is that because of his deficits there are certain game plays, scenarios and situations that he doesn't comprehend at the level a typical child may. An example, over the Summer we were watching Tom and Jerry....I grew up with that cartoon, all my kiddos did. There was a scene where Tom was cutting himself up into pieces trying to get Jerry. Kaden said, hey that's like me. I asked him to explain and he told me when he feels overwhelmed the pain helps him feel like he's there in the room and not scattered. I asked him why Tom was doing it and he said because Jerry is overwhelming him by running all around. See Kaden is relating it to how he feels, he's not getting the whole segment of the cartoon, just like I wouldn't expect a young child to get it. They would be scared to see a cat chopping himself up into little pieces. So, what may be age appropriate for him is still not mentally age appropriate. And we as his parents have to take precautions and be consistent in the boundaries we set for him.
His week is up now and I can't wait to tell you how he responded....it was amazing and there were several hard moments too. We saw him through a mini detox, but the outcome was beyond what I had expected. I'll share more real soon.