The Monster’s always been somewhat sensory seeking rather than sensory adverse.
Sure, he doesn’t like fans – not ceiling fans, not rotating fans, not box fans, nor anything that’s fan-like (hand-dryers, air filtration systems, etc). On the other hand, though, the kid loves fireworks, and used to be all for loud drums and the like at the renfaire.
More recently, though, he’s taken to seeking more tactile input.
It wasn’t so bad if he was just running his hands through the grass or whatnot when he’s been outside playing or running his hands along a bush as we go for a walk. It’s turned, though, into his dropping to his knees randomly while we’re walking so he can touch the ground and feel the sidewalk, or the street, or mess with leaves that have fallen. He’s pulling up the grass and dropping it from his fingers – both to watch how it falls and to feel (apparently) how it tumbles through his fingers.
He’s also taken a bit to being compulsive about little messes being on surfaces. When we’re at the playground, he spends endless amounts of time picking up pebbles and sticks that are on the equipment and dropping them – one at a time – off the side, and watching them fall to the ground. He does likewise with cat hair on our couches… and with two cats, that can be quite a bit of cat hair. I don’t know precisely what he’s seeking with that, to be honest, but I have to wonder what’s going on that’s suddenly driving this.
Most of the time, the behavior’s not a problem. Most of the time, he functions just fine (for him) and he’s able to get other things done besides these tactile inputs. On the other hand, his dropping to his knees can be problematic if we’re walking across a parking lot, or crossing a street, and those are the points where I’m concerned about the potential for him to accidentally get himself hurt. Even if we’re just walking on the sidewalk, there’s a greater potential for him to end up with skinned knees or other hurts from doing so – I’m usually holding him by the hand, so there’s that whole danger of getting dragged…
I think it’s just really time for us to go back to his developmental psychologist again to see what we can do to break these tendencies…