Hi, my name is Frank1970! My grandson has autism, and runs away a lot. Any advice? — Scope | Disability forum
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Hi, my name is Frank1970! My grandson has autism, and runs away a lot. Any advice?

Frank1970
Frank1970 Community member Posts: 1 Listener
edited October 2021 in Autism and neurodiversity
Hi my name is Frank my little grandson of 5 who has autism, he runs away quite a lot & no matter how much I call for him he doesn't listen
my main concern is that he might run out on traffic, I'm just hoping someone could give me some advice on how to deal with this 
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Comments

  • L_Volunteer
    L_Volunteer Community Volunteer Adviser, Scope Member Posts: 7,979 Disability Gamechanger
    Hey @Frank1970

    Welcome to Scope's forum. It is great to see you have joined us. I am so sorry to hear your grandson is running away frequently and not appearing to listen. These behaviours must be really concerning for you. Unfortunately, difficulties sensing danger are common amongst people with autism (especially young children). If you haven't already, I advise noting what happens before these behaviours, what the behaviours are and what the consequences are of the behaviours. Social stories relating to your grandson's behaviours may also help.

    For more guidance, I recommend the National Autistic Society's website. Some specific links you may find useful include:

    We also have a discussion section dedicated to talking about autism. If you are interested, you can find it at https://forum.scope.org.uk/categories/learning-disabilities-and-autism

    I hope this helps! However, if you need any further support, have any follow-up questions or need anything to be clarified, please don't hesitate to reach out to us again  :)
    Community Volunteer Adviser with professional knowledge of education, special educational needs and disabilities and EHCP's. Pronouns: She/her. 

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  • janer1967
    janer1967 Community member Posts: 21,964 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi and welcome to the community 

    All I can suggest is make sure the place he is in is secure and he can't get out and if outside maybe use one 8f those wrist type of leads so he can't get away from you 
  • Tori_Scope
    Tori_Scope Scope Campaigns Posts: 12,487 Disability Gamechanger
    Welcome to the community @Frank1970 :) I can see why this would be a concern to you, so thanks for joining and posting your question.

    I've moved your post into our category for discussions relating to autism and neurodiversity, and tweaked the title to make it clearer what your question is. 

    Along with the links L_Volunteer sent, I found the following advice from the American Academy of Paediatrics, some of which may be useful to you:
    Know wandering triggers. Children with ASD can be impulsive and typically wander or bolt from a safe setting to get to something of interest, such as water, the park, or train tracks—or to get away from a situation they find stressful or frightening, such as one with loud noises, commotion, or bright lights. 

    Secure your home—regardless of your child's age. Shut and lock doors that lead outside. Consider putting alarms on doors to alert you if a door has been opened.

    Work on communication and behavior strategies. Teaching your child strategies to self-calm when stressed and appropriately respond to "no" can make a big difference. Make sure your child's teachers and other family members understand how important it is to keep your child engaged and busy to reduce his or her urge or opportunity to wander.

    Set expectations. Before going out in a public place, communicate the plan with your child and other family members—including the timeline and rules to follow. Consider noise-canceling headphones if noise is a trigger, and use the "tag team" approach to make certain your child is always supervised by a trusted adult.

    Consider monitoring technology and identification. More than 1/3 of children with ASD who wander are never or rarely able to communicate their name, address, or phone number. It may be helpful to have things like GPS devices, medical alert tags, and even their name marked in clothing. Project Lifesaver and SafetyNet Tracking or other programs may be available through your local law enforcement agencies.

    Rest. Children with ASD may be less hyperactive and less likely to wander during the night if they have a sleep management plan and a regular sleep schedule. Caregivers who get enough sleep are also more vigilant. Many children with ASD may have sleep problems.  If your child is having problems going to sleep or staying asleep, talk to your pediatrician for further evaluation and treatment.  
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  • Annette1356
    Annette1356 Community member Posts: 8 Listener
    The MOST important thing I can suggest is to make sure he NEVER gets your keys. When my son was 4 he got my keys and escaped the house, then he got into my car and started it up, I was so exhausted from sleepless nights with him that I didn't hear and the only thing that woke me up was my neighbour banging on the door at 4;30 am. because he had been revving the engine He had been watching me drive and learnt how to start the car, the only thing that stopped him actually driving was that he couldn't reach more than one peddle at a time. He's 25 now and I still have to keep my keys on my person, but he's an excellent driver, lol  I also used a halter on him when he was younger, but not when he was going to school, for fear of kids taking the mickey.:smiley:
  • L_Volunteer
    L_Volunteer Community Volunteer Adviser, Scope Member Posts: 7,979 Disability Gamechanger
    edited November 2021
    Hi @Annette1356

    Thanks for sharing your experiences. I always find lived experience super valuable. Lived experience is reassuring, less isolating and inspiring. Glad you are in a better position now  :)
    Community Volunteer Adviser with professional knowledge of education, special educational needs and disabilities and EHCP's. Pronouns: She/her. 

    Please note: if I use the online community outside of its hours of administration, I am doing so in a personal capacity only.

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