It's been busy still in my Bristolian world.
I have had a very fruitful, so far, meeting with
They have expressed a lot of praises. Not only
problems. Cirwen has a very strong personality.
She knows who she is and what she wants. She
also does express her individuality in many ways.
One of the teachers pointed out that this usually
happens with children in years 9 -11, around the
age of 14 -16. In this way my girl appears more
mature. This is what they are drawn to. She may
be interesting but also intimidating, which leads
to friendship or teasing.
It is all understandable, however Cirwen has lost
the ability to judge the behaviour of others towards
her. Any kind of comment or question regarding
her looks or character, she sees as attack and the
act of bullying.
Her own behaviour became erratic. She goes to
school in a very defensive mood bordering paranoia.
She is unable to confront teasing in a calm, rational
manner. A lot of the times she bursts into tears and
leaves the classroom.
Teachers I spoke to admitted there were a few bullying
incidents which have been dealt with and taken very
seriously. Most of the time, however, these are the
cases of almost harmless remarks or bickering. Any
other person would be able to ignore or brush off such
things, yet Cirwen cannot.
Her need to be accepted, fear of confrontation, and
slowly degrading self confidence are overwhelming.
As any autistic person, she finds it difficult to cope
with strong emotions. At this point, she can't cope at
all. Tears appear in her eyes when I ask her to tidy
up her room as she is scared I will tell her off (where
there is no intention from me to do so). Instead of
anticipating something good, she anticipates the worst.
I do not know yet how we will deal with it. At the
moment, when we watch her programs I try to point
and discuss with Cirwen the characters' behaviour
in difficult situations. I'm looking for social stories
At school she will have a diary to write down her
experiences everyday. Once a week one of the
teachers will read it with her and try to help Cirwen
see the difference between serious bullying and
easy to deal with teasing. Since Cirwen's "specialty"
are words, this should be enjoyable, but also could
help her in making a better judgement of events.
I am still looking for advice and resources. It is
going to be a long journey and time consuming.
But I know we will find a way. We always do...