After two months of behavior difficulties with Tyoma it was time for a meeting with Dr. B.
She is an autism/Asperger specialist who has published a number of insightful books. Her Asperger Syndrome and young children: Building skills for the real world,sits on my bookshelf and is well read. I like her and respect her. She set aside an hour and a half to talk with me and was tremendously helpful and supportive.
Basically, I did a wonderful job despite the circumstances and she explained to me what Tyoma was going through. Essentially Tyoma is going through a period of intense cognitive growth as he learns to socialize and develop friends. She said that there will be intense stress on him until well into February, but that the most stress came from our recent family changes.
She also said that she does not advise on an extended Russian family stay simply because it is too stressful on both Tyoma and me. This was sweet music! I won’t get into the specific interventions, but she did say, give it time. I feel myself struggling to recover from the whole debacle. It is important to see the past two months from Fontess’a point of view.
How excruciating it must have been to stay here with hardly anyone to talk to. Her grandson can’t seem to spend more than ten minutes with her, her daughter in law is stressed and not able to give the companionship she craves, and her own son is working extra hours and is has grown far beyond from his former role of child. I think the hardest part of the whole visit was the lack of internal resources I had. I have just enough energy to cope with Tyoma and Papa and keep well myself. Although he meant well, constantly trying to convince me that Tyoma was normal, her conversations invariably became heated and stressful, draining the life out of me. At which point of his two month long screaming festival did she see “normal?” Sigh.