Hyper focused: Where do I draw the line?


There is a reason why we don’t have magnetic letters on our refrigerator at home. Why you may ask? Because of this.  

 Willy spent a good chunk of Mother’s Day sitting on the floor of my parents kitchen, arranging and rearranging the  letter magnets on the fridge over and over again. And while he was arranging and rearranging the letters, he was singing different letter songs to himself; the ABC song, A is for…, etc.  

 This is a first for us. Willy’s teachers tell me that he hyper focuses at school as well, but I’ve never really witnessed it until today. And if you try to talk to him while he’s arranging and rearranging… you’ll most likely hear him say “NO THANKS!” In a very stern voice, or nothing at all because he’s too busy singing a song all about letters.  

 He sits back and admires his work. He flaps his little hands and squeals with delight because he’s so proud of his accomplishment. And me? I honestly don’t know what to think. It bothers me because he stimming. There’s nothing functional about what he’s doing, yet… He knows that there are 26 letters in the alphabet. He recognizes upper and lower case letters and the sounds that they make. He can recite the alphabet backwards and forwards, yet…  

 … he’s stimming. I know exactly what  the therapist in me would do. But the mom in me leaves him alone. The therapist in me would redirect him and offer him other choices of things to do. The letters would magically disappear. The mom in me is letting him be himself and is listening to him sing incessantly. Do I interfere or leave it alone?  

 I think I’ll leave it alone. 

3 thoughts on “Hyper focused: Where do I draw the line?

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