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Language Log

Wednesday, Dec. 13, 2017 - 7:50 p.m.

We got a roomba and it is the best thing ever. There was a time when it would have felt unacceptably spoiled to have such a thing, but the year? Two? Since not having cleaners come has forced me to conclude I can't actually do it all by myself. I still have to pick up, but if I can get it picked up, I'm done.

The dining room floor being clean means I can sit down there and stretch without being grossed out and ashamed, which is good because I was getting knee pain from insufficient stretching.

We are resolved that we need to get a psychologist to see U. His rage is not a normal level. It's a tricky balance: on one hand, I believe it is his neurology making it hard for him to stop doing things once he gets going. So it's unhelpful and unkind for us to describe it as something he could simply stop if he were a better person. But he also tends to rationalize his behavior, and describes it as something intentional even after the fact, because he is protecting his fragile sense of self. He is very sensitive to criticism. But I don't want him thinking he is justified in continuing to do this stuff because it is just his neurology, either. He needs the tools and motivation to do some hard work even as his brain is maturing.

I was talking to him about the playground I played in when I was a child. Told him it got torn down. He started crying and then became angry, telling me I had to tell them to put it back.

I have noticed that he is very sensitive to movies and books depicting emotions. He finds his level of empathy uncomfortable. He doesn't like to admit it. I read him Ferdinand and he didn't want me to read the end-- I think he was afraid for Ferdinand. Same with Nightmare Before Christmas. He had trouble getting through the part where Jack is shot down, and the scene after where Jack laments his actions. In general it is hard to get dragged through other people's emotions.

Complex little guy.

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