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12 year old Aspergers son is very depressed.... help !
bearandbear posted:
We have a 12 year old son who was diagnosed with Autistic Spectum Disorder (Aspergers) when he was 9 and more recently he has withdrawn into his own world and is very depressed. He is talking a lot about self harm and wanting to die and that he feels as if he is in a nightmare and cannot wake up ! In recent months we have tried him on an SSRI (Sertraline) and just last week switched to Prozac as the Sertraline was not really helping. He recently put up a you tube video saying good bye to the world and announcing he was going to kill himself. This is very distressing for my wife and I and for our eldest son who is 15 now (we also have three other younger children). Yesterday he ran way in the rain at 8pm and when I went out to find him he was sitting in the park on a bench in the rain all alone. We are very concerned about him and are not sure how to progress from here. For now we have agreed with his psychologist and school that he should stay off school as it seems to be triggering feelings of low self esteem as he sees everyone else as normal and asks 'why am I not the same' ? We have also had a recent stayover in hospital to allow doctors and psychiatrists monitor him and perform 'tests' etc, but their conclusion was he is a very typical aspergers kid going through a difficult phase with puberty and aspergers causing him to have an overload of feelings at the moment. They suggested we reduce internet and xbox time and have him get involved with the scouts. Any insights or advice on how we can move forward and out of this dark place would be much appreciated
momuv4girls responded:
I totally can empathize with your situation, my 14-year old daughter struggles with a lot of the same as you describe.

While she has had "mood" issues her entire life, was just recently dx with Aspergers.

Not sure where you live (some States have better resources than others) - but, I am enrolling my daughter in an IOP.
(Intensive Outpatient Program).
We live in CA, so thankfully there are a lot of resources for children with ASD.

Has anyone mentioned this as an option for your son? Has your son tried a social group for those on the spectrum?

bdt1805 responded:
Hi, I have aspegers too, and I went through a very similar stage in my life at that age. I think you should find something he can enjoy, while being able to express himself. Does he like art? sports? I have PTSD and what I feel helps me a lot is reading and writing. Writing especially, because I have a speech impediment. Also, there is a web page (google meetup) where you can find local groups and clubs. There may be groups specializing in aspergers or kids with special needs. I also found it really really helped to have a counselor who specializes in aspergers or high-level autism. Another thing off the top of my head: you might want to talk to your doctor about the SSRIs because they have been known to cause suicidal thoughts in some children. I hope you the best and hang in there!
bearandbear replied to momuv4girls's response:
Thanks Kathleen for the response.
bearandbear replied to bdt1805's response:
Thanks for the response, it is really useful to have a perspective from someone who has gone through something similar to what my son is going through ...

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