November 30, 2008

Too Much Ego in an Autistic World?

The commenters on Lisa Jo’s blog seem to be inspiring my posts this weekend.  😉

Today, Lisa Jo wrote about Autism and the Happy Medium (basically, finding balance in our lives).  One of her commenters happens to be one of my favorite Twitters, and he’s an all-around good dad to a child on the spectrum.

It was his statement that made this post possible.

It is amazing how much time there is in a day when you lose your job and many of the social functions are off limits due to the behavior and actions of your child with autism.

Why is this the case exactly? How many parents actually feel the same?

Are they more concerned about how they will look in these social settings?

Have these parents allowed their egos to get in the way of their children enjoying more of life?

Or is there more to it?

Nothing is off-limits for us because I don’t think folks have enough chutzpah to give us funny looks if my son does something “unusual”.

Holistic lifestyle or not, I still have my military attitude, and I have ZERO tolerance for ignorance at any level!

And there’s no way, in this lifetime, I would ever stand for my family feeling ostracized because of autism??? That seems a bit absurd to me.

It’s not the message I want my son to receive.

Yet, it may be the very message these parents are conveying.  They could be inculcating their children with the ideas that there are certain places they simply cannot go… because of autism.

By keeping their children “away”, they could be missing out on several opportunities to raise awareness.

Here is one definition for autism that really chaps my butt,

2. a tendency to view life in terms of one’s own needs and desires.

Folks like Denis Leary have accused our community of being self-absorbed, and hate groups like this one do the same.

We cannot under any circumstance show through our actions that we do not want to be bothered with autism outside our “comfort zones”.

If there are other reasons like severe sensory issues that would explain why one would choose not to participate then I would understand.

However, declining invitations and limiting activities because a parent may not want to be bothered by the “looks” is a pill I can’t swallow.

If you’re a parent who chooses to steer clear of social gatherings, please enlighten me.

Do you decline because of sensory issues or do you decline because of the “looks”?

Someone shed some light on this one for me.

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