Monday, 20 June 2016

The things I hear during an England game

Boy with Autism and England Flag

Here are a few examples:

"He's not covering the post."


"Cap, cover the perimeter"

"Oh.. that was close."

"Yyyeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeesssssss! Get in!"
(several fist pumps, happy dance)

"And it's lights out and away they go."

"Where was that going?"

"And Hamilton's on the grass, and Hamilton's had a massive crash."
(excessive jumping)

"Come on England."

"And both Mercedes are out in the first lap."

"Cap, we have to stop Ultron."

Err.. wait a minute.. did you catch those last two? Any real sports fan, myself not included, might have picked up on it a bit earlier.  Generally Captain's don't 'cover the perimeter', there's no player called Hamilton and what's that about 'light's out'?

Whereas the 'Shhhh' comment was obviously directed at me and several comments were directed at the TV, remaining few were something else entirely - our son Anthony, scripting.

Scripting is a easy to remember autism term.  It's the repeating of words, quite often 'scripts' from television or other media. It's similar to, but I think in my kids different from, their presentation of echolalia, where they 'echo' words.  Both our autistic boys developed echolalia as a way of responding to a communication.  For example:

"David, would you like an apple or a pear?" and David says "Pe"

Sometimes David may actually want a pear, other times he just echoes that last word he heard because he knows if he responds he'll get something to eat.

Anthony's scripting isn't this kind of response.  His scripting is a method of stimming. Stimming is short for "self stimulatory behaviour".  In effect here, Anthony is really excited about watching the football match and he seeks to activate his senses as a way of coping with how he feels.

He repeats short snippets from areas of special interest including Avengers (The Age of Ultron) and from the latest Grand Prix. He also jumps about to get this feeling too. Without his scripting and jumping he feels at a loose end.. wrong.  It's a bit like the feeling you need to have a hug when your are sad I guess. David often stims by spinning round and shaking his hands.

During the football match, while my hubby is doing a 'happy dance' because England have scored, Anthony is saying weird out of context stuff and jumping about just because he's really excited to watch the game!

Sometimes scripting can cause Anthony to be distracted like when he is trying to do his homework,  But, all in all, the things I heard during the last England game told me that my guys were just having a good time.. and that's pretty cool!

Our blog - I'm so happy my son has echolalia
Our blog - Autism obsessions in actions

Ambitious About Autism - Repetitive behaviours and stimming


  1. It's interesting to find out these terms as my brother had severe autism and did alot of the above but I never really know why or what for! Thanks for linking to #MarvMondays. Kaye xo

    1. I just get basics at from his therapists, most of the learning just comes from being a mummy, it's way more accessible now. Thanks for commenting.

  2. What a lovely way for your son and his dad to connect. When Edward was little he would sometimes bounce vigourously on the sofa and then run around the living room in small fast circles if he got particularly excited about something happening on the TV. It was often comical to watch him watching TV. Edward has never really echoed what other people say but he has had a form of echolalia where he echoes what he has just said, at a slightly quieter volume under his breath. He still does this occasionally now. #SpectrumSunday

  3. I've heard of that echoing before. I think it's called Palilalia (where you repeat your own words, often whispered). I guess I'll write another post!

    Yes, it's nice they get to do some things together, although last night was mostly just frustrating for the hubby, not sure Anthony's excitement was that well received :-/

    Thanks for commenting.

  4. So intriguing, I'd never heard to this before, and ditto lovely is they are enjoying the madness that is football together ! #MarvMondays

  5. My son would always, and still often does, repeat a question rather than answer it. But my daughter is very good at scripting. sometimes it takes me a while to catch on as I think she's trying to tell me something when in fact she's just scripting the latest video she's watched or game she's played.

  6. Sounds like a very interesting game Ann :) I do love that he is sharing his joy in such an excitable way. I'm sure James wishes Hayden would sit and watch a football game with him, especially with that enthusiasm. I am interested to see how Hayden's communicating skills progress over time and whether he will ever script in this way. Thanks so much for linking up to #spectrumsunday. We are back at 5pm today. I really hope you join us xx


I read all your comments and appreciate you sharing your thoughts with me and our readers. I welcome any feedback on my posts and you can always contact me directly. Thank you.

What is Autism?
It's so much I couldn't possibly try and explain. For us it's wonderful and heart-breaking. Joyous and truthful. But as far as diagnosis is concerned, why not have a look at the National Autistic Society for their definition of Autism.
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