The rest of the story

August 14, 2008 at 9:56 pm 7 comments

     I’ve had a few requests for a little more context about yesterday’s post, so here’s the rest of what I had originally written, but didn’t include:

     We’ve always tried to shelter C from news and violent images; not only because we want to protect his emotional health, but because he is so innocent and naive. Even though his peers have mostly all seen Batman, Spiderman and every other “man” movie, C has no interest. Developmentally, he hasn’t hit the “boy who wants to see grown up movies he really shouldn’t see” stage. Combine that with his fear of death, and real world issues become way too scary for him to contemplate. Consequently, we’ve not yet talked with him about war, the military, and the like. When he asked what a soldier is, we told him a soldier protects our country. The inevitable, “Protects our country from what?” question never followed, thankfully.

     So yesterday, you can imagine my surprise when C said to me, “Mommy do you want to know what I’d do if I was President? I’d not let anybody shoot anybody else.” To my knowledge, his only knowledge of “shooting” involved the spaceship shooting on Space Invaders. He might have borrowed this sentence from a classmate, or perhaps he knows more than I thought. I asked him some more context gathering questions, but all I could get was that they were talking in class about what they would do if they were elected President.

     I asked him tonight if he knew what shooting someone meant, and he said no. I asked him if he knew how a person would feel if they were shot, and he said no. I asked him if he knew what a gun is, and he said no. “OH, I’ve got it, is it like a water gun?” he asked. I told him it was more serious than that, and then he quickly moved on to building a tower with blocks, happily unaware that we’d just had one of our many conversations in which I feel completely out of my league. Trying to figure out how to share age appropriate lessons with a child who is the equivalent of a 10 year old 3 year old is always a challenge.

     “But would it tickle?” he asked a moment later.

     Score: Innocence – 1, Worldliness – 0.

Entry filed under: autism. Tags: , , , , , , , , .

Did anybody hear that? He’s okay, I think

7 Comments Add your own

  • 1. looksgoodinpolkadots  |  August 14, 2008 at 9:59 pm

    Innocence is great!

    Worldliness will come, too soon for many kids!


    Yup, no rush on that one!

  • 2. robinaltman  |  August 15, 2008 at 7:09 am

    So cute! I think you did the right thing not exposing C to violent movies. I was playing around on the computer yesterday, with my 14 yr old son looking over my shoulder, and watched a you tube trailer for “Journey to the Center of the Earth”. Alex said, “That can’t be any good.” When I asked, “Why?”, he replied, “It’s an action film and it’s only rated PG.” Great attitude. I’m so proud.

    Well, Alex is right, really. The good ones need some scariness! Of course, PG is more my speed – lol! I’ve become a wuss since becoming a parent. I used to enjoy “Silence of the Lambs,” and now I can’t watch it for anything! Somehow the real world is scary enough without adding fiction to it.

  • 3. pixiemama  |  August 15, 2008 at 10:11 am

    We heart Thomas the Tank Engine.

    All the men (spider, bat, X) make me cross!

    Me too – they freak me out. Guess C comes by it naturally. If the kid can’t handle Nemo and Rudolph, there’s no way he’s ready for Batman! And frankly, I’m pretty happy that I have an innocent on my hands. I know it may have implications later, but for the moment, I’m quite pleased with that. You know, for awhile, he had to fast forward through the troublesome trucks in Thomas too – even they scared him!

  • 4. FXSmom  |  August 15, 2008 at 10:41 am

    I’m watching Silence of the Lambs this weekend with my 16 year old. I know that she is ready for it but at the same time I am nervous it will be too much. She really wants to see it though and I’d rather watch it with her than find it on TBS someday.

    * * *

    Matty is pretty innocent too. I remember looking at him that day after 9/11 and thinking how much I envied him. The world could me coming down around his ears and what would matter to him was if he had his Cheez-its, his family and his dogs.

  • 5. awalkabout  |  August 16, 2008 at 8:45 pm

    I guess we’re protective on that point too with these ones, although not with my girls…Wow. I mean K watched Total Recall when she was what? 3 years old? She was just much better oriented than these guys. But the therapist says we should let the 12 year old watch what his peers are watching so he has conversation material…I just don’t know.

    I know – I’ve worried about the conversation material part too – I already notice the difference. But like so much else, we just take C’s lead. He is so afraid of things, it’s not like we don’t LET him watch – he doesn’t WANT to watch, you know? I’m almost glad because it takes away the dilemma for me. Frankly, I’m not sure he’ll ever catch up with that stuff. He’d still watch Teletubbies if I’d let him. Now there’s something new – “Hey, kid, go watch Batman. Teletubbies? Absolutely NOT!” LOL!

  • 6. goodmum  |  August 18, 2008 at 10:29 am

    I love the way you approached this! Wordliness versus Innocence. I hope the tally stays as far over on the Innocence side for as long as possible! Cherish it! 🙂

  • 7. mommy~dearest  |  August 18, 2008 at 10:53 am

    Jaysen is in limbo when it comes to the “innocence” vs. “worldliness” thing- he loves his Baby Einstein, but will talk about “killing” things, and willl want to swordfight…with his Baby Einstein video tapes.

    Maybe he’ll figure it out some day in the near future… 🙂

    That is an interesting mix of the two qualities! I’m sure they will merge at some point!


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