What does S.I.B. stand for? Self injurious behavior. Meaning injurious behaviors that you do to yourself such as biting yourself. Courtney has S.I.B’s and they come in the form of biting her hands and arms. Mostly she does it when frustrated and or to escape something that is too hard. Or even to escape something she doesn’t want to do. You may have noticed in some pictures that Courtney wears a red object on her shirt. That is a chewy and it’s there for her to chew on in hopes it decreases the biting. Overall it does. She chews on that thing all the time. Wish her arm wasn’t her go to but glad we have something to help decrease it.
So things like changes in routines, over stimulation, new places can set her off and cause this behavior to increase. That includes something like a 4day vacation at a fancy hotel with fancy dinners. So needless to say, as much as we have had a fantastic time on our trip to Mackinac Island, the picture I’ve been posting have hid some of the frustrations. Here’s a picture that shows the behind the scenes of taking a child with autism out of their comfort zone…
Those are bruises on Courtney’s arm from her biting herself. Scares me because someone could mistake those as my hand marks. Breaks my heart that she bites herself hard enough to leave bruises. These weren’t just from our vacation. We’ve seen an increase since her summer break has started. It took my friend to remind me that summer break brings lots of changes. Change in schedule, change in teacher, mom and dad home…all things that can set behaviors off. The last full day of our vacation is when it was at it’s worse. She bit herself over and over again. She even tried biting joe, Alyssa and I. I said at dinner that you can almost see it in her eyes. To me, her eyes looked like she was ready to attack. There was a dark look deep in those eyes. She had hit her limit.
Some how we made it through the dinner. After dinner she went after Alyssa again and that’s when I decided we needed to separate them for a bit. Courtney and I went back to our room where I let her just relax and play while Joe took Alyssa to the porch of the hotel where she got to charm all the adults in the hotel. Courtney relaxed almost immediately. My heart was happy again. Killed me to not spend our last few hours together as a family but knowing both girls were happy doing what they needed to do made me feel better.