Thursday, January 1, 2009


When you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth.

-Sir Arthur Conan Doyle (Sherlock Holmes)

It is very difficult trying to remember what our early signs of Autism were. I do recall that even as we began looking through the early frantic checklists, we were never quite sure. Some of the little quirks that raised questions were often times short-lived and ultimately seemed harmless. Truth be told, our Little Man was happy, sweet, energetic, pleasant and easy going. He was (and is) a pleasure. Bottom line: the guidance provided by the Internet is no replacement for a professional evaluation (and the sooner the better).

Listed below are some of our other "early signs." But, I must again say, that many signs which may be suggestive of Autism are also present in a more typically developing child.


* Failure to respond to his name.

* Fascination with his reflection. (See footnote below)

* Fascination with his shadow.

* Love of stacking of blocks.

* Early fascination with letters and numbers.

* Strong preference for patterned or repetitive activity.

* Pulling adults by the hand to obtain desired objects.

* Failure to point at desired items either to request or to share interest.

* Seeming lack of fear of new people (no real strong parental preference).

* Walking on his tiptoes.

* Language development in chunks from songs, videos or books as opposed to a more typical progression from a number of single words to multiple words.

* Apparent lack of interest in other children his age.

* Fascination with spinning.

* More responsive to exaggerated/highly animated speech.

Footnote: I intentionally used the word "fascination" in this list and not "obsession" or "compulsion." At the time, his actions and activities seemed within the bounds of the what we would consider to be typical activities of a high energy little boy.

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