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Old 04-11-2013, 01:00 PM   #1
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A Little Heart-Broken...

My 3yo son, Owen, suddenly developed a strange facial tic (hard eye blinking) that he does nearly constantly. We haven't uncovered a reason for it yet as it came on unexpectedly but we have an appointment next week. Anyhow, I was taking my older daughter to school today and she lined up against the wall with the rest of her class like she does every day and my son wanted to go say hi to her teacher, like he does every day (though she has been gone for a week and today was her first day back). Today though, his tic was really bad, and the teacher first said "Owen, did you get some raindrops in your eyes?" He looked confused and said no, and so she said "Why are you blinking your eyes like that?" He said, "I can't help it." So she started doing it back to him (I guess in an attempt to be funny?) and he sort of just said goodbye and walked away. The entire class watched this interaction. I can't fault the teacher really, since she has known him/us for a year now and hasn't seen my son do that before and didn't know....but I'm a little bit heart broken that this could potentially be the future my son has to look forward to and I want to cry a little bit thinking about him being teased for it.

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Old 04-11-2013, 01:05 PM   #2
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Re: A Little Heart-Broken...

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Originally Posted by UnderTheStars View Post
My 3yo son, Owen, suddenly developed a strange facial tic (hard eye blinking) that he does nearly constantly. We haven't uncovered a reason for it yet as it came on unexpectedly but we have an appointment next week. Anyhow, I was taking my older daughter to school today and she lined up against the wall with the rest of her class like she does every day and my son wanted to go say hi to her teacher, like he does every day (though she has been gone for a week and today was her first day back). Today though, his tic was really bad, and the teacher first said "Owen, did you get some raindrops in your eyes?" He looked confused and said no, and so she said "Why are you blinking your eyes like that?" He said, "I can't help it." So she started doing it back to him (I guess in an attempt to be funny?) and he sort of just said goodbye and walked away. The entire class watched this interaction. I can't fault the teacher really, since she has known him/us for a year now and hasn't seen my son do that before and didn't know....but I'm a little bit heart broken that this could potentially be the future my son has to look forward to and I want to cry a little bit thinking about him being teased for it.
Sorry, mama! How wonderful of you to recognize she meant no harm, but I can totally understand your worry and sadness that someone will choose to mean to him in the future over something he can't control.
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Old 04-11-2013, 01:07 PM   #3
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Re: A Little Heart-Broken...

Are you guys going through anything stressful right now? My DS has done this twice now and it took about a month to outgrow it each time, and both times it coincided with a lot of stress. The first time was when my mom was very ill and ready to pass away and the second time was when we found out were were having twins/trying to put an addition on the house. So it's entirely possible it's something that will only be around for a few weeks, and then go away on it's own. We were just told to not draw attention to it, because that adds to the stress.
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Old 04-11-2013, 01:38 PM   #4
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Re: A Little Heart-Broken...

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Are you guys going through anything stressful right now? My DS has done this twice now and it took about a month to outgrow it each time, and both times it coincided with a lot of stress. The first time was when my mom was very ill and ready to pass away and the second time was when we found out were were having twins/trying to put an addition on the house. So it's entirely possible it's something that will only be around for a few weeks, and then go away on it's own. We were just told to not draw attention to it, because that adds to the stress.
We really don't have any stress in the family per se, but my son may have some medical issues we haven't uncovered. I posted a thread about it in parenting - Not sure if I should trust my gut or not, help me please?!.

My husband has a very mild tic disorder (could be genetic) and he was teased when he was younger...his wasn't/isn't anywhere near as bad as Owen's is currently though. I sincerely hope that it lessens for him but I know how kids are and it just hurts me right now to think about.
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Old 04-11-2013, 02:34 PM   #5
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Re: A Little Heart-Broken...

In grade school I had a friend who had tourettes, had experienced facial tics almost constantly. I remember the teachers taught the classes in our school about tourettes and we got to ask all the questions we wanted and from that time on I don't remember him being teased about it at all.

Honesty everyone just knew it was something he did and couldn't control so that was that. You kinda just got used to him doing it and didn't even think about it anymore after a while.

Maybe doing something similar with your school would help?

I'm sorry he's going through this and I do think the teacher was being pretty insensitive in her actions.
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Old 04-11-2013, 02:41 PM   #6
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Re: A Little Heart-Broken...

sorry. she didnt have a clue. my daughter had a tick too. she would nod her head alot when little. I read it had something to do with mineral deficiancy. look into that. I myself get twitches in my face at times that last hrs on end. I take whatever is recommended... I forget (its magnesium or calcium i think) and it goes away about 20 minutes later.
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Old 04-11-2013, 02:43 PM   #7
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Re: A Little Heart-Broken...

My 5 year old developed this a few weeks ago. He had a tic when he was about 18 months old, and we saw a neurologist for it. It was deemed a transient tic after EEG's and such. It lasted about 6 weeks, and went away. The doctor said that up to 80% of children will develop transient tics from the time they are 2 until 7 years of age. Only 2 in 100 will go on to develop tourette's syndrome into adulthood. Those statistics made me feel better. The tic went away, and now we are dealing with this one. It's gotten a TON better in the last two weeks. We are about 2-3 weeks away from having a new baby, which is what I think caused my son's tic.

His is hard blinking as well.
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Old 04-11-2013, 06:20 PM   #8
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Re: A Little Heart-Broken...

I'm so sorry. My 4.5 does a lot of hand stimming behaviors and I am constantly afraid that she's going to be made fun of for them .
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Old 04-12-2013, 07:14 AM   #9
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Re: A Little Heart-Broken...

I am so sorry you and your son experienced. You are right in realizing that the teacher didn't know, but it still hurts. I always fear that no one will notice anything about my son except what makes him different, in part because that's what happened to me growing up too. I would just say that when you see that teacher again, if it comes up let her know, perhaps she didn't understand that it's really not something he can control.
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Old 04-12-2013, 02:29 PM   #10
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I am so sorry you and your son experienced. You are right in realizing that the teacher didn't know, but it still hurts. I always fear that no one will notice anything about my son except what makes him different, in part because that's what happened to me growing up too. I would just say that when you see that teacher again, if it comes up let her know, perhaps she didn't understand that it's really not something he can control.
I did talk to her yesterday after school and she felt horrible...she actually called me today to apologize again. I love this teacher, it was an honest mistake - she had no idea tics could just show up suddenly so she thought he was just making faces at her. The first time I asked him what he was doing (before I even recognized it as tics myself) he just said "I don't know, I can't help it.". I know tics can and often do disappear, but given that my husband has them and my son's medical history I'm preparing to deal with it long term...I guess it was just the realization yesterday that we (his family) aren't the only ones who will notice them and it scares me how others might treat him. I just hope he lucks out with understanding peers and/or I can somehow help him overcome any negativity. This was sort of sudden change, so I'm still trying to handle it emotionally...my son has always had internal medical stuff but this is the first time his "differences" have been obvious to strangers and I guess I'm mourning that a little bit...if that makes sense. Thank you everyone for your understanding.

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