xmlns:og='http://ogp.me/ns#' Yeah. Good Times.: Looking for input: #youmightbeanautismparentif

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Looking for input: #youmightbeanautismparentif

Recently there's been this hashtag on twitter: #youmightbeanautismparentif, where we get to say awesome things like "#youmightbeanautismparentif you're heading to the doctor to see if your foot is broken b/c it was in the way of a chair thrown mid-meltdown" (from Amy) and "#youmightbeanautismparentif Your heart aches with the meltdowns while others only see a 'behavior problem'" (from Laurie). Naturally most of the things I threw out there were sarcastic, but occasionally not. And the thing about twitter is, I've got 2500+ followers, and not all of them have experience with autism, so oftentimes I would get a response along the lines of "that's not autism specific, that's just a kid thing."

That kind of bugged me. And I'm really sorry to my friends who have said things like this, I hope you don't take this personally, and please don't apologize for it because I'm pretty sure you mean well, but the thing is... it's not the same. It may be a "normal kid thing" to constantly lose your jacket at school, but when my autie kid does it it's a completely different experience than when my NT kid does. And so I tend to get really defensive when I see people respond in that way.

So then I thought.... I shouldn't be getting defensive, I should be educating. After all, how much did I know about autism 10 years ago? I can't expect everybody to understand what we go through if they have no personal experience with it. And anyway, it's my (new) obligation as an autism blogger to inform and educate; after all, we change the world, right?

So, I am now looking for input from you guys. I would like to do a post explaining why these things aren't the same. I'm going to write about the lost jacket incident. Sunday has promised me a post about picky eating (she probably forgot. Sunday! Don't forget about that post about picky eating you promised me!!) If you have a kid or kids with autism, particularly if you also have an NT kid and can compare and contrast what has happened in your house, please contact me at jillsmo at gmail.com and add your story to the post I am compiling. Let's educate, not be defensive! And instead of getting annoyed when this happens, we can just point people to that post. If you need a topic, let me know, I have a list of those, as well, and if I don't get enough volunteers I will start recruiting people to write about specific ones. I'm planning to post it after the holidays.

Also: Just a reminder that the Autism Holiday Readathon is still going strong!! As of yesterday, Kate had read something like 2,400 pages. After only 6 days. Don't be intimidated by her brains and her beauty, though, because..... um.... Okay, I don't know why, because she's pretty awesome.