An Autism Diary

A day in the life of David Hartley

Broken Train = Broken Boy? David seems to think so…

Christmas train 2Been a good day over here today. 🙂  Relaxed and uneventful. lol  Sure the boys made their usual messes, but I can take that as long as no one gets hurt and the messes are not of the collosal form. 😉  It has been good to have a relaxing day for a change.  We’ve been having a few more of these than normal lately and I am enjoying every minute of it.  Not all of our days are laid back though.

Yesterday evening for example turned into a stressful mess of heightened nerves and hyperness that eventually led to David getting hurt as he raced yet again through the house and tried to dive into the kitchen.  The hardest part about it all though?  David has recently developed a deep seeded fear of seeing himself cut and/or bleeding and he started screaming in total terror and panic because of that at the sight of blood on his shoulder.  As he was sinking into a seriously overwhelming meltdown at frightening speed, I was left grasping at straws so to speak with how to calm him down, address his cut, and convince him he’s not broken and his world has not come to an end. 😦

Christmas train 1And to think this all started with a toy train that he developed such a strong bonding too within mere moments of holding it while at the mall a while back… I snuck a purchase of said train behind his back after he had been calmed enough to remove from the scene safely and gave it to him for Christmas as a present from Santa.  I knew it was not a toddler proof toy but decided to give David a chance with it because he was handling it with gentle care at the store.  David was in anguish (his behavior regarding the train mirrored the anquish, fear, and emotional mess he went through when his daddy first “disapeared”…) over this train being “lost” and “never coming back” every time he thought of it (which was quite often) until he saw it again on Christmas morning sitting under his tree.  In his excitement though, he managed to accidentally break the connecting bars that attach to the wheels within two minutes which meant I was forced to take it away until I can figure out how to repair it.

He has been so distraught over it and I can’t seem to calm him down and convince him he will see it again even though he’s been through this “broken toy routine” so to speak several times before.  The best I have been able to do is try and keep him distracted from the subject as much as possible but now he even refrences it when he gets hurt (or as he now calls it, “broken”)… He keeps screaming out in fear things like “I’m broken!”, “I’m going to disapeer!”, “It will never be ok again!” and the like…

He has never been this dramatic about a toy or himself before… And I am at a loss as to what to do about it.  Any chance any of you know how to repair broken trains???


  1. Anonymous

    Hmmm thats a tuff one maybe if you can have him help you fix it and say a ll fixed and stuff thats what I think I would do 🙂

  2. Can you get him another pone or let him play with broken?

  3. This is indeed a tough one. Parenting is not easy. I don’t get cross easy but it does make me cross that a kids toy could break so easily. I have had similar experiences of toys breaking over the years and the kids are devastated at the time. How would he go with playing and keeping the broken bits?

  4. To be honest, I don’t take a favorite toy away unless the break was something serious. One little piece snapped and now the whole side bar is unstable. 😦 Unfortunately, David is very aware of engines and all the parts on them so I can’t get away with even a missing wistle (usually the tiniest part on a toy train) let alone a whole side bar that goes a long the wheels. 😦

    I am not sure how to fix it either and can’t afford to replace it. I honestly don’t know what is going to happen with all this. I am trying to get a ride back to the store that sold it to me though and ask for help there. They’re a small business and they seemed to really care about David the day he “met” the train. One of their brothers/relative (may not be a brother) runs a huge ridable train in the other mall and knows David well because of it. lol He was there that day and he knows about David’s Autism and some of the struggles that come with it so he was in the trenches with me so to speak trying to help calm David down and reassure him when David had to put the train back on the shelf.

    They may not be able to help… but I figure it’s worth asking right?

  5. They don’t make the toys by the way, they just sell them

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