Tuesday, June 5, 2012


Conversation is something that takes very little effort for most of us. A simple, "Hello! How are you?" can be very difficult for a person with Autism. Most young children with Autism lack the ability/skill to initiate real conversation. Jax has always been a social little guy but isn't quite sure what to say or how to properly go about making conversation. He also still has a lot of his "own little language" so that can make things tough for him too. 

For Jax, repeating movie lines is much easier than having to try to come up with his own sentences. He usually uses them in the right context, though. For example, when he's annoyed with someone you might hear him say, "You uncultured swine! What're you lookin' at, ya hockey puck?" (from Toy Story) When he's ready to run around he first closes his eyes and says, " Okay, here we go. Focus. Speed. I am speed." (from Cars) He recites movie lines a ton when he's in an uncomfortable situation (parties, church, etc). That is why I get sooo excited when I hear him having "real" conversation with other people. Another little tidbit about Jax: He is super loving and does not understand personal space. He's been known to meet someone for the first time, stroke their cheeks, and give them a kiss. In fact, a friend of ours (a man) got a big kiss on the lips from Jax the other day. Oooh goodness. That was fun.

Today, we were at a playground and there was a guy playing with his kids. Jax started walking up to him and I just knew what was coming. I thought to myself, "Oh Jax...pleeeease don't touch his face! No kissing! Ahhhh!" For real. That was my exact thought process. Jax totally surprised me, though. He walked up to the man, looked him in the eyes, and this was their conversation: 

Jax: Hi! 
Guy: Hey!
Jax: What are you doing?
Guy: Oh, just watching my kids. What's your name?
Jax: It's Jaxton!
Guy: Awesome!

I'm really seeing progress in his ability to initiate conversation. It's pretty exciting!  Conversation plays a huge role in our ability to build relationships, to get jobs, etc...so it really gives me hope for his future. :)