Thursday, December 22, 2011

Aspie futures

Here we are December already and Xmas rat-a-tat-tatting on the door.
Yes, the shopping is done.
I think.
Hubby did the Chrissy tree and decs while I had the Feral Aspie teen up in Dunolly.
He got his happy on....he trundled about on his treadly, we sang in the choir for the Chrissy carols and he et a delish chicken parma in The Royal Hotel ( cooked by Mine Host, Karen The Kitchen Whizz).

He's been so full of emotions these past few weeks - end of the year irritation picked up from the other kids at school, excitement at school hols, excitement at staying in Dunolly, birthday excitement (he's a whole 15 now, where the hell did those years go??!!) and so on and so forth.
You get the picture - typical Aspie and typical teen coping with all these GINORMOUS churning emotions inside.
But he's been a good kid.
Got his happy on cos of Dunolly.
And wants to get a part-time job.....

We are starting to get scared for his future.
Like any parents we want to see him independent, doing whatever job/work career that floats his boat and coping with Life.
With his Auditory Sensory issues we can't see him coping with even a part-time job after school...he barely takes in the instructions of school lessons or conversations with friends, how much basic Occ Health and Safety will he retain?
He works at a s-l-o-w pace, hurrying him up Does.Not.Work, it only angers many bosses will tolerate a time-poor employee (who has NO concept of time itself) with what they perceive as "attitude" before booting him out?
How many knocks to his self-esteem will he have to cop before something, anything, turns up?

We've even tossed around the mad idea of starting a business in Dunolly just so he could work at his own pace, learn basic safety proceedures at his own pace, work without a boss hanging over his shoulder or the stress and pressure of keeping up.
How to start a business - what business?! - we have not the foggiest.
This would, of course, involve selling my Dad's house and using that money as we are stoney broke and on pensions.
How would we do this with my vision impairment, hubby's dyslexia and lack of car transportation I have NFI.
It seems like an impossibility but there must be a way or something for him.

Hmm, something for researching in the New Year.


Andrew said...

Gotta make sure you own the roof over your head and it something for your boy in the future too. I will ask R as he knows a bit about such things, but from what I know, there is not much around now and what there is is pretty boring stuff.

Eccentricess said...

Big and scary.
As a positive, I will say a friend in a similar situation, autistic daughter, has recently trained as a manicurist. She will work from home and teach all she knows to her daughter, eventually bringing her into the business.
Selling the house seems a ginormous risk. Try many, many other avenues first. Plus, it's such a pretty house!

Aspie Warrior said...

I remember starting my first job. It was at KFC, in the kitchen. I was very excited - I'd be earning my own money, I'd feel a bit more like a "real boy" like all those other boys at school that had their own bike, and a PS2... maybe I would meet some new people that liked me. Maybe I would meet a nice girl.

It's not easy for anyone with Asperger's - that's entirely unavoidable, I'm afraid. The workplace was indeed exciting when I first got there, and even starting new jobs since has been an exciting endeavour, but once the thrill is gone, and the pressure has settled, it becomes an erroneous task of keeping up with somebody else's expectations once more.

I'm studying journalism, now. I don't work, but I did manage to complete my qualifications as a chef, so I could go back to work any time I wanted to. Although, after 12 years in hospitality - I don't particularly want to.

The idea, for me, is free-lance investigative journalism. I have come to terms with, and in the process discovered the beauty and down-to-earth simplicity, of a humble, minimalist lifestyle. As a freelancer, I will be able to work at my own pace, and I can focus my work on a talent I enjoy - writing. That helps keep the work interesting, and pressure-free. This, of course, won't be the answer for everyone, but perhaps it will enlighten you to alternative possibilities.

Using what we're good at, aspies can become particularly successful. Worry not - your son will discover something, and I'm sure you'll have his loving support all the way, which is what will matter the most to him, I trust.

River said...

This is something that I worry about too. Not for me, as I don't have special needs kids, but for you and your boy, Kelley and Boo, Veronica with Amy and Isaac, others that I've "met" on the internet. It's a scary thought that these kids who are so very special, will have to find a job where they're allowed to be themselves, and really there isn't all that much out there, especially in the beginning stages where they're still trying to find their feet, find what they love and are good at, find a boss who is willing to help them, instead of the constant "hurry, faster" that seems to be the norm these days.

Kay Walker said...

Difficult enough for ordinary people to find satisfying suitable work these days...I followed up 33 kids who were autistic/Aspergers and about 6 of them had the potential to work at real jobs. One died- couldn't tell if it was suicide or accidental from eating the radioactive parts from fire detectors- it sounded like one of those silly fantasies where a kid thinks he can become superman etc. Of the others, one has fulltime work as a computer programmer (like his brother, who works for Google) and another has part-time work as a train-driver. The others are on pensions and only one has decent hobbies to occupy her time. The programmer is now 34. He was several years ahead in maths/science at school & started uni subjects early, like your son. Then he went to uni fulltime and earned a music degree, but all the other students found him very peculiar (his speech, language and behaviour were impeccable). When he couldn't find work he did a PhD in maths and got the programming job but he still lives with mum & dad as he couldn't manage in an apartment. He could manage with training, but his parents are very caring and will probably gradually get him out of home when he's trained to be responsible. Perhaps your boy might try to train as a librarian & then specialise in his favourite topics? Universities employ people like that and its a flexible job. Maybe he could study the sciences around fossils- geology, anthropology, zoology etc and become a research assistant? Maybe a top researcher? You'll have to visit some people in these jobs and let him see what happens there- maybe he'll spot something that appeals! I know a specialist librarian at Monash Uni, if that's any help!