I’ve compiled a list of “5 things you need to know about autism”. The idea being to give you some idea of what autism, and being autistic means. Whilst also dispelling some myths about autism. On with the list.
An autistic child turns into an autistic adult
If you think this sounds obvious I don’t blame you, but I can’t remember the amount of times I’ve heard. Won’t they grow out of it? The answer is no you don’t grow out of it, unfortunately that’s still not fully understood by some people.
Including the it seems our government etc.. as as soon as an autistic person hits 18, they seem to go completely off the radar. Services, care and benefits are suddenly stopped, and a transfer to adult services appears to be as easy as cracking an atom. When will this change? Hopefully sooner rather than later, but I won’t be holding my breath.
Autism isn’t a learning disability
An autistic person may or may not have a learning disability (and other diagnosis) alongside autism. What autism is, is a very complicated and disputed matter. The simple version of how I try and explain it is, it is a condition that affects communication and social interaction. Is that accurate, and the best way to put it? I don’t know.
Anyone can be autistic
For a long time autism was seen as a condition for white boys, one of the main reasons for this was the diagnosis procedure. It was tailored towards symptoms shown by white boys, leaving girls and people of different ethnic backgrounds completely overlooked. It’s now becoming understood that girls display symptoms differently, and progress is being made. 10 years ago our daughter probably wouldn’t have been diagnosed.
Not every autistic person is amazing at maths
More than once have I been asked, does that meat they are amazing at maths? When I’ve told people about Jack and Lily being autistic. No it doesn’t! Jack doesn’t do maths at all, and whilst maths is Lily’s favourite subject, she is still working behind her “expected level for her age” at the moment.
This applies for any other “special ability”, there are autistic people out there who have some unbelievable talents. Which should be celebrated, but I’ve also seen autistic people feeling bad about themselves for not appearing to have a special talent. That shouldn’t be the case, everyone is different and unique in their own way. Autistic or not.
You don’t need to feel sorry for parents of autistic children.
Thankfully no one has ever said, “oh I am sorry” to me, when I’ve told them my children are autistic. But it does happen a lot, as well as “awww” and the look of pity. My children aren’t ill! They find some things more difficult than others, but they are perfectly healthy.
There have been some difficult times, especially with Jack. I think they are coming with Lily, now she’s older her issues are becoming bigger. But I’m not sorry for who they are, so no one else should be.
They are my 5 things you need to know about autism, obviously there is a lot more to it. This I think is a good start for people who don’t know much about autism, to gain a bit of understanding.
Lastly I’d just like to mention that I’ve updated the website and integrated WordPress into the website. So I now have a nice new shiny like button at the end of posts, and a follow button to follow this blog on WordPress. Any support as always would be hugely appreciated, thanks.