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One Cobble at a Time

Frustrating Conversations

Sandra Tayler's Journal

responsible woman

A cobble by itself is just a small stone, but when many of them lay together they create a path . My life is made up of many discrete parts. I have to find ways to fit them all into place so that I can continue to journey where I desire to go. This journal records some of the cobbles that create my path.

Frustrating Conversations

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responsible woman

Child: I am really struggling with Thing 1. How do I fix it?
Me (knows solution from long experience with both thing and child): Have you considered trying action X?
Child: That won’t work.
Me: I know it feels that way, but have you considered Supporting Evidence A?
Child: Evidence A has nothing to do with me because of Thing 2.
Me: Okay. Then perhaps we need to start with working on Thing 2. Have you considered trying action Y?
Child: That would work, but I can’t Action Y because of Thing 3.
Me: I don’t understand how Thing 3 is related to Action Y.
Child: Because of Random Idea 7.
Me still not understanding, but deciding to avoid the rabbit hole of Random Idea 7: Okay. Action Z can also help with Thing 2.
Child: I hate it when you tell me to do Action Z. Stop nagging me.
Me: But you wanted to solve Thing 2, and Action Z is very effective for doing that. Take a look at Supporting Evidence B.
Child: I reject Supporting Evidence B. Thing 2 doesn’t matter because Thing 3 is my real problem.
Me feeling completely lost now: Didn’t we start this conversation worried about a different Thing than that?
Child frustrated: Oh never mind. I’m done.

Then the child walks out leaving me with dangling threads of at least three rhetorical arguments that support my advocacy of Actions X, Y, & Z. I also have a lingering sense of frustration because Actions X, Y, & Z are foundation elements of adulthood and they’re being rejected as irrelevant. It’s like a person dying of thirst because the water they are given isn’t the color they want it to be. Autism bestows some advantages, but sometimes the disadvantages of it prevent the person from accessing the advantages. Bridging the gaps in between my basic comprehension of the world and theirs is complicated.

Comments are open on the original post at onecobble.com.

  • I'm never quite sure if those conversations are because Teenager/Child or because Autism Spectrum Person.
    • Most of it is autism spectrum, at least in this case. My other three teenagers never did this in this way. They argued with me, sure, but it was really rare for us to discover we weren't working from the same basic premises. With this kid, it feels like we have to define terms and premises every third sentence. And then he gets mad when I try to clarify something "I KNOW that Mom." Well son, you just showed me that you don't know this other basic thing, so I now have to check and repeat to make sure you actually heard.

      So frustrating.
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