Hobson talks in this chapter about how the autistic individual lacks the ability to share experiences. He talks about how the typically developing little child brings something to another person and wants them to admire it or talk about it with this little person. It is a rare event for Alan to bring something to me to see. Usually it is something that is not working the way it should. He doesn't bring an object or picture to me to admire or to talk about with him. I am always trying to figure out how to provide experience sharing, even for a few moments, in a day.
Another thing that Hobson notes that emerges in the little person is the ability to talk about he or she feels. The little person can talk about sadness, pleasure, being upset, and more. Alan does talk about how he feels occasionally. Usually it is frustration or anger. I can't recall him talking about taking great pleasure in an activity. If I ask him, "Was that fun?" He will answer, "Yes." The thing is, he doesn't volunteer, "That was fun!" or "That makes me sad." I do use as much declarative language as I can to express my feelings out loud. I need to do even more of it and encourage my husband and other family members to express in a statement that they feel a particular way, especially other ways than anger or frustration.
Figuring out how to develop these abilities in a person whose mind is not automatically programmed to share is taxing me to the limit.
Labels: thinking about thinking