...TOO OLD?? i beg to differ. WiseGuy has this 'problem.' Certain noises send him into hysterics. They are generally loud noises, but not ALL loud noises will do it. We can't take him to parades because of the fire, police and ambulance sirens. When they pass by and sound their sirens he screams and cries uncontrollably as i stand there with him holding my hands tight to his ears while he presses against them to hold them on even tighter. So we don't take him. He likes to WATCH fireworks....NOW. It took us until this summer to get him to watch them on TV. He can't stand to be within a mile of them. He stills states that he HATES July 4th and wishes we could all celebrate quietly. So we don't take him to fireworks displays.
There is one particular noise that sets him off more than any other. The fire alarm at school. He has ALWAYS hated the fire drill. His first day of kindergarten they thought it would be a good idea to have a fire drill....his FIRST day of KINDERGARTEN! Ok, so, i can see a bit of logic in that...getting them used to it....but that's not how it worked for my WiseGuy. The noise terrified him and he screamed for over an hour. As the months wore on he continued to scream and cry when they had the fire drill, it just took less time for him to get over it once he realized they were outside, away from the noise and that soon the alarm would get turned off. Then Tornado Awareness week came along. The fire alarm sounds but you DON'T leave the buidling. You duck and cover in the midst of the noise. i had to go pick him up from school that day as he cried and screamed so much that he made himself throw up. He did the same thing the next day....and the day after that...and the day after that. He would cry randomly at home and talk about the fire drill with a terrified look on his face while i tried to reassure him that they weren't going to do it the next day...or the next or the next....but i knew, eventually, they would do a regular ol fire drill again and it would start again. It did. And the time after that and the time after that. Yeah....they had a LOT of fire drills. Eventually, we worked out that the teacher kept a pair of wax earplugs in her desk and when the bell sounds, she is to give those to him to put in his ears as the children line up and walk outside. We told him they were there....but he didn't need to use them the next time and calmed down quickly once they left the building.
They had a fire drill at his school last week. He cried outside for a half hour and REFUSED to go back into the school. They finally convinced him to go back inside but he still wouldn't go back into his room. After another half hour he was back in the room and sat with his fingers in his ears while they resumed the school work. The teacher called me. Turns out at his school they just redid the fire alarm system in the school and it IS quite loud and VERY piercing. Since they didn't want to TERRIFY these little primary schoolers, they make an announcement over the loud speaker telling the children it is a fire drill and to line up and exit the building slowly. They never sound the alarm. So WiseGuy was confused once they went back in and started their school work and had never heard the alarm. The teacher said he sat and looked around and asked 'Where's the fire drill??' The teacher told him they already had it. He wasn't really sure what to make of that.
He didn't talk TOO much about it. i was SURE it would be the topic of discussion the rest of the night, but he barely mentioned it.
i wasn't sure what to make of THAT.
i look things up online. i research some things. i see that there might be medical causes for some such behavior/reactions. i also see that the cures are few and far between and most say that over time he will be accustomed to the sounds he hears. He will learn to tune them out...or down...just by experiencing them time and again and again.
Can i tell you that it breaks my heart? When i'm standing there holding his ears as the fire trucks pass in a parade, there are tears in my eyes as well as his. It pains me that he can't enjoy something that should be so fun. It makes me sad that he and i sit inside on the 4th of July and New Year's Eve and we can't go out with the others to see the beautiful fire works.
i've had him to audiologist. They did a hearing test on him. Guess what the result was?? He has PERFECT HEARING! No kidding, chief, i already knew that. They ran a few other tests and they basically told me it's on the neurological level and how he is PERCEIVING the sound.
The neurologist was never able to get me in for an intake appointment before we left Florida.
Many family members think that it's all in his head. They say he doesn't react as strongly when i'm not around. Or sometimes not at all. But the incident at school with the fire drill is proof positive that he DOES react when i'm not around.
i guess i'm not sure what to do, to be honest. Seek out answers to the cause? Or just work with him for a solution that we can see already is working to some extent?
i've struggled with this for a while now and am no closer to coming to a resolution.