About Autism…Just Shut Up

I hear a lot of stupid stuff come out of people’s mouths about autism.

Ignorance is common, but when it’s mingled with and effort to console, reassure, or commiserate…it often becomes unbearable!  Yes, you probably mean well, which is why I haven’t brought it up before.  You likely want to help support me and my family, which is great.  I just wish you knew how the things you say and post often make me cringe.

Here are the top kinds of statements that make me want to punch you in the face (and why):

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Chemistry and Autism 

The terms used to describe autism are often deceptive.  Disorder, Deficit, Impairments.  These words imply that the autistic brain is wired incorrectly, rather than wired differently.

Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is defined as a neurological disorder.  ASD is identified by deficits (or non-typical levels) in social interaction, along with restrictive/repetitive behaviors.  ASD may or may not include language impairments, mental impairments, or genetic factors.

For some individuals with autism, these terms are important, because they help them to obtain much-needed services and support.  However, for many people, they become hurdles to social integration and acceptance in a world where they are already struggling with social communication.

Illustration by Kevin Ruelle

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50 Gift Ideas for the Autistic or Sensory-Seeking Child

Every December, I get bombarded with requests for suggestions for my gifts for my autistic and sensory-seeking son.

He doesn’t have an interest in the same toys and objects that many neurotypical children the same age do. It makes it challenging (even for people who know him very well) to find gifts that he will actually enjoy.

Keeping in mind that not all sensory-seeking or autistic individuals are alike, here is a list I have created of some gift ideas for the autistic or sensory-seeking child in MY life, to help you shop for yours this holiday season.

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When Push Comes To Shove

Despite my ass-backward approach, my transition from to SAHM has actually been a long-time coming.

It didn’t come like a freight train barreling down on me in a frightening manner.

Nor like a holiday present you are eagerly waiting to receive.

More like an impending root canal, where you know you’re going to have to suffer through a procedure to improve your overall quality of life. You can only avoid the event for so long before it becomes crucial, and when it does happen…you’re so relieved that you welcome the event.

I can’t tell if that makes it sound better or worse than it actually is.

It’s probably both….

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