Hmm. Here's a question.
I've been doing a lot of thinking recently about Aspergers, High Functioning Autism, ASD. Whatever it's called.
Doing my history and trying to work "me" out, I find that there's a few things that don't really seem to make sense.
I don't recall as a kid having meltdowns, or needing routine, or hating change as such, but I also don't recall stimming.
Which brings me on to the questions. They say that there is a number of people on the spectrum who go undiagnosed. If stimming is such an integral part of being on the spectrum, then why is this behaviour not seen in childhood? How can they go through the net without a diagnosis?
Can you be on the spectrum without stimming or is there lots of kinds of stimming that actually, what could well be stimming may just be seen as a relatively normal behaviour for a child?
I went undiagnosed until 2 years ago, aged 56. I didn't have many of what I'd call 'public' behavioural traits as a child. But I had private rituals that I had to go through before I could be comfortable with things. Adjustments to my pillow, for instance, so that it was the exact distance from each side of the bed. I also, as mentioned in another thread, tapped and chewed my tongue. So there might not have been any obvious physical signs - but there were plenty of others. I was clearly bright - I learned to read and write early, and was top at my class in primary school with reading and spelling - but I was bottom of the class in every other respect. This continued throughout my school years. I wasn't attentive in class. I used to sit and doodle, or look out of the window. I didn't make friends - and still don't. I was always the one on the edge of the playground - either alone, or hanging with the other 'freaks' as we were called. My school reports were invariably littered with words and phrases like 'quiet', 'easily-led', 'disruptive', 'unsociable', 'never pays attention', etc.
As others have said - it's a spectrum, so behaviours and traits will differ from person to person. We're as different from each other as we are collectively from neurotypicals.
Being relatively new to this forum, I love reading other people's posts where what they write could also have been written by me. Although I don't bite my tongue.At home, sometimes, when we're all relaxed watching TV, I might notice that not only am I wriggling my toes, but my wife and one daughter (strangely, the daughter) are also toe-stimming.
Toe stimming! One of my favourite habits. Socially acceptable and almost invisible, unless you know what to look for.
Until 5 minutes ago. I didn't consider it to be stimming.
I don't know if it is - but I've been doing it all my life. Sometimes it's just rhythmical tapping, other times its tapping along to an ear-worm accompanied by other finger tapping on bits of the body.Amongst other things I'm a musician, and was taught early not to tap my feet when performing (unless they are playing bass drum / hi hat pedals :) ) but that it was acceptable to tap a toe to keep rhythm. That was fine until I was wearing sandles at a rehearsal and one of my dancers was fascinated that I was toe-tapping whilst playing melodeon. To be honest, until he told me, I hadn't noticed myself.
I love the idea of toe stimming :) I tend to stim with my hands, sleeves and rings and watches, but toestimming is more discreet. I wonder if I can rewire myself.
Over here folk musicians stamp their foot with great gusto, I think partly to annoy classical musicians and partly for percussion’s sake (Iknow someone who got knee trouble through it) . Btw I share my abode with a lily catagnari and a serafini :) but they are sulking a bit in the corner currently.
I've had LOTS of what I always called "Tics" throughout my life and just thought everyone did. As a child many of them involved things such as having to tap sockets or light switches three times whenever I had to touch them and I was told countless times over the years that these types of 'Tics' were related to OCD. It was only years later that a Doctor informed me that real OCD means the person thinks something bad will happen if they don't perform their ritual and that never applied to any of mine - mine just 'felt right' in a way I couldn't explain to anyone.
It only fairly recently that I've come to associate all of these 'Tics' as Stimming and mine have changed constantly over the years. I don't think I have any that I do in public but that's probably more to do with masking rather than not wanting to.