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3.06.2011

OCD and the five year old

Doc is a special mix of obsessive compulsive, nervous energy and constant chatterbox. He notices any change and worries why things are different, makes sure his plate and fork and napkin and drink are all at the table before he can eat, needs to know where everyone is as soon as he comes in the door, and never shuts up to the point of distraction.

He asks the same question over and over and over until I'm ready to scream. To save my sanity I insist that he listen to answers and stop asking questions over and again hoping he'll catch the drift. Not this crafty little five year old. He'll ask his brother instead of me, he'll paraphrase or put the question in a negative. Instead of "are we going to the park?" he'll say "do we have to go to the park?" -- even if it was he who wanted to go.

The latest is beautiful. We were doing errands in town and one stop was the grocery store. Along the way I got the groceries elsewhere so we could skip that stop. As we're passing that store, the tiny voice in the back seat who simply can't contain himself pipes up, "I wonder, Grampy, where Market Basket is?" he even feigns scratching his head in earnest curiosity. With no response from the driver he tries again, "Hmmm, Grampy, do you know where Market Basket is?" Still with no response he turns to his brother for help. "Tio, do you think Grampy knows where the store is? I wonder if he does." Finally I tell him we don't need to go there after all and he moves on.

If he doesn't slow down the poor kid is going to blow his own mind before he gets much older.