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Addressing impulse control, building independence

Discussion in 'Parenting & Autism Discussions' started by sunfloral, Apr 10, 2019.

  1. sunfloral

    sunfloral Active Member

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    Hi, I realized that a lot of the reasons why my brother (12 y/o) has been exhibiting violent tendencies has been because he has trouble not acting on his impulses. He's extremely curious and runs off a lot, many times to places where he shouldn't be (like the staff only area at restaurants, Costco, etc). He knows what is right/wrong and can be "trained/conditioned" to stop doing specific behaviors, but in the end, he only learns to stop doing those specific things because it becomes a part of his routine. I think that what would really be beneficial to him is to learn how to stop himself and think about whether or not his impulse is safe/appropriate.

    I did some research and found out that he receives Applied Behavior Analysis based services. It's from my understanding that ABA is viewed by many as an unethical form of therapy. I always felt a little weird about the services he was receiving because it felt like he was being trained like a dog, but I truly didn't know what would be best for my brother and thought that ABA might be normal practice.

    I'm not really familiar with the different resources/therapies/medications that might be useful for autistic children and would really appreciate some advice/thoughts on how other parents might have addressed impulse control in the past. I think that I really want to start putting the support systems in place that will help my brother become more independent.

    I've reevaluated my circumstances and don't think that it'll ever be possible for me to get my parents to step up and take care of my brother. I know that when my parents get older, I'll be expected to take care of my brother in their place, and I really don't know if I can handle it anymore. I don't think my brother would like that either, and it's because of this that I'd like to move my energy from trying to change my parents to preparing my brother for a fulfilling life of his own.

    Thank you.
     
    Last edited: Apr 10, 2019
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  2. Lysander

    Lysander Well-Known Member

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    I think you're absolutely spot on! Your approach is the responsible one. Your brother is young and he should be encouraged in the right direction while he can still be reached. In two or three years, it might already be too late! If his view of himself is that there is something wrong with him and that he is an outsider, he will have no meaningful defense against people who intend to lead him astray. He's a child and not a man yet, his life can be happy and independent and fulfilling whether or not he was a misbehaving child.

    Your parents need to be strong and have hope for your brother and instill the right values in him now, as if their lives depend on it. Teach him finance, teach him a sport, hire a tutor, push him and see what happens.

    After all, he's only 12 years old. Anyone who says his future is written, that he is who he is and he always will be, is wrong.
     
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  3. Aspychata

    Aspychata My Art Work

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    It's sad when the child has to step up and parent the parents and other children. You have a keen sense of issues involving sensitive family relations, are able to communicate your thought process logically, have you considered being a therapist yourself? Whatever you set out to do, bless you, and your angel wings are showing. lol
     
    Last edited: Apr 10, 2019
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  4. Fino

    Fino Alex V.I.P Member

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    Only medication has significantly helped my impulse control, such as Adderall.
     
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  5. Graphin

    Graphin They're red can duck?

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    My impulse control is anxiety
     
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  6. NRG75

    NRG75 New Member

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    Things that help with impulse control: medication and maturity.
    Things that can help with Independence:
    Clearly expressed expectations and lots of support and encouragement. There are a lot of tools available to help with independence depending on what your brother needs. It sounds like there is room to grow and learn. Someone else mentioned managing anxiety. This is a huge part. A lot of parents say they had to get the anxiety under control through meds first. For independence and working on things like routine and schedules, I really love using a device called Goally. I’m not sure where you live but you could look into funding sources for supportive devices.
     
  7. Kalinychta

    Kalinychta Well-Known Member

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    Poor impulse control is a symptom of executive dysfunction, which affects 80% of autistic people. So dealing with it isn’t just a matter of maturity and medication for us. Just thought I’d better point that out.
     
  8. NRG75

    NRG75 New Member

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    yes. What I meant was that often it takes time (aka maturity) to develop better impulse control because that part of the brain, in all it’s varying function isn’t developed fully until at least age 26 (says newest research). I have seen people use medication to slow down their thoughts. I am not saying this is true for everyone. I think we expect a lot from kids with executive functioning issues without understanding the neuroscience. So I apologize for suggesting it was just medicating about medicating people or waiting for them to mature and grow out of it. I have a lot of my own EF issues that I work on.