Spectrummy Mummy

Asperger's, Allergies, and Adventures Abroad


with 22 comments

Before Abby Cadabby, Ernie, around the time of Bashful, but after Upsy-Daisy, there was Sleeping Beauty and all the Disney Princesses.  She still likes Disney Princesses to this day.  So do we.  Having a 4 year-old girl in the house means we have an excuse to indulge ourselves by watching Disney movies.  We have been waiting to add another title to the collection of Pudding approved movies, though popcorn lends an appeal to certain non-Disney choices.

We didn’t get to see Tangled at the cinema, as there was no sensory showing for it, but it looked good from all the clips I saw.  I resolved to buy it when it came out.

I’d read another FS blogger’s post about her daughter being inspired by Tangled to draw a Rapunzel mural on her bedroom wall.  What struck me the most is a comment she made later about Rapunzel dealing with her isolation with art.  The Small Bits family are posted to a Mexican border town, a place that is dangerous and isolating.  I hadn’t thought until that point about what Pudding’s artwork is telling us.  She is in her own way isolated.  Her drawings focus on human faces, particularly the eyes.

I loved it.  Pudding seemed to enjoy it too.  She still cantered away when the popcorn ran out, but every once in a while she would return to check it out.  When I sat down to watch Tangled, I was thinking about it in these terms, and watching it through a lens of Foreign Service isolation.

But not for long.

Rapunzel strokes her hair when she is nervous.  She goes barefoot the entire time.  She yearns to be with other people, but is scared of them.  She is (said to be) clumsy and naive.  There is a whole montage of her swinging, rolling around, and generally sensory-seeking.  Even though she has lived in a tower her entire life, she is not at all afraid of being in water.  She has special talents too.

I’m not saying that Rapunzel is on the spectrum (though if Arthur can do it, I don’t see why Disney can’t go that little bit further).  I’m saying that I viewed Tangled through a spectrummy eye.  Even though I was predisposed to interpret it differently.

It is more than seeing my child in a different way, it is seeing life through an entirely different lens.  The world is altered with my spectrummy eyes.

So if it looks this different to me now, how does Pudding look at the world?  I still don’t know.  But I can tell you that she asked for a Rapunzel doll as her next reward.  Maybe she is starting to see herself through these eyes.

Written by Spectrummy Mummy

April 12, 2011 at 7:42 am

22 Responses

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  1. Awesomely perceptive!! You have just given me a reason to rent Tangled!!


    April 12, 2011 at 7:58 am

    • Ha ha, they should pay me a commission! I loved it, but then I do have a weakness for these kind of things.

      Spectrummy Mummy

      April 12, 2011 at 8:39 am

  2. As Pudding gets older she herself will make the connections just wait. Jay will read a book and them come down and tell me why he thinks the characters have Aspergers. His latest is Percy Jackson from the lighting theif. In the book the character admits he has ADD but Jay insists it is also Aspergers a d then he will point out all the things that make him think so. The funny thing is he can see these traits in others but not in himself.

    I loved Tangled!!! We are actually going to a fundraiser showing of the movie on Friday. I will have to watch it through my own Soectrummy Mummy eyes!

    • It will be interesting to see if she does this as she grows up too.
      Yes, no hope but to see it through blue goggles now!

      Spectrummy Mummy

      April 12, 2011 at 8:40 am

  3. That’s it I’m going to watch the movie:) I think it would be great for Disney to create a princess or prince even, on the spectrum:)


    April 12, 2011 at 9:16 am

    • Right. And how about a lead character in a wheelchair too? I feel like we’ve waited too long for these kind of things. Come on Disney!

      Spectrummy Mummy

      April 12, 2011 at 11:44 am

  4. My, our girls are similar aren’t they. Echolalia, sensory seeking, art producing, hair stroking, gorgeous little bundles! 🙂

    Great post! You’ve got me thinking now.


    April 12, 2011 at 9:18 am

  5. I wonder if our children will ever be able to explain what their view of the world is to us. I know adults and teens who have posted about what it is like for them. Still, I am so curious to hear it from my own child. Meanwhile, I’m putting on those blue googles too – and having a little boy watch Tangled… 🙂


    April 12, 2011 at 9:49 am

    • You know, they really tried to make it a more balanced film to draw in the boy viewers. You’ll have to let me know whether that worked or not/ 😉

      Spectrummy Mummy

      April 12, 2011 at 11:46 am

  6. I wonder all the time about how my son sees and experiences the world, and how it is different. I really hope that someday he can tell me.

    Nice comparison, I really liked it.


    April 12, 2011 at 10:14 am

    • Hopefully one day they’ll tell us. I don’t think we’ll manage to wait patiently though!

      Spectrummy Mummy

      April 12, 2011 at 11:47 am

  7. Funny how we all see things through our own lens. The escaping isolation part definitely resonates at our house. Thanks for the link. Glad you all enjoyed the movie! It is interesting that your daughter produces so much art. What a gift to be able to have that medium for insight. I learn so much about my kids from their art.


    April 12, 2011 at 10:24 am

    • It is definitely a gift, especially when it is hard for a kid to communicate in conventional ways. Hopefully she’ll learn to express herself more as time goes on to. Thank you for your post- we loved the movie. I’ve watched it about 4 times now, the kids not so much!

      Spectrummy Mummy

      April 12, 2011 at 11:49 am

  8. Mummy, it is so nice to read this post, I thought i was the only one seeing ASD characters in dvds and books. I think “Max” from Max and Ruby show (Nickelodeon) is spectrummy (delayed, limited language, and constantly seeking sensory input), and if you read Beverly Cleary books, the Ramona character seems aspergerish (she wears her pjs to school under her clothes because she likes the softness on her skin, she blurts out inappropriately-she told her teacher that the saggy stockings she wears make her legs look like elephant legs, etc.etc. etc.) Your thoughtful posts are like a daily morsel of chocolate!


    April 12, 2011 at 6:40 pm

  9. I just wanted to stop by real quick and say hi as I just found your blog and am now following. I have two children with SPD. I am also following you on twitter, I am @caseysgoodlife. Have a good day


    April 13, 2011 at 5:59 am

  10. I’ll have to go back and watch it again. My boys just didn’t sit through it for some reason. Oh wait, they don’t sit through anything without vehicles in it…
    you always have such great insight!


    April 14, 2011 at 7:14 pm

  11. […] rapunzel – Vindicated!  I’m not the only one who sees it.  Disney, the world is ready for a spectrummy main […]

  12. […] for another walk and they returned for the final scene.  I was soured by the experience, and when Tangled came out and we found it was not the sensory showing that month, we decided to wait until it came […]

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