Sunday, October 22, 2006

Biting off more than she can chew

Good news about the little boy in my last posting. We have heard from his physiotherapist. She has arranged to visit him while he's with us.

Another child, a girl aged nine, also has a diagnosis of autism. She goes to a special school and once a week comes home to us on the school bus. She then sleeps over so as to give her mum and brother a much needed break. Her intelligence and ways of communicating are very specialised. More than anything she needs to feel safe and moderately understood. Hilary and I have discovered slowly where her particular wavelength is, and how to get on it. We do wonder though how some of the experiences offered to her in school can possibly be constructive.

To take one example again, it is hardly likely that she would find a visit she made recently to a local mosque the least bit meaningful. Her understanding of her own family's Christian faith is typified by her description of a crucifix as 'Jesus' on 'a cross', feeling 'sad'. Now to stretch her religious knowledge within the familiar setting of her native faith is one thing, but to challenge her powers of comprehension by introducing her to other religions is surely a case of biting off more than she can possibly chew.

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