Wednesday, January 7, 2015

A letter from the heart of one autistic adult to an autistic child

I logged onto my home page to find yet another letter from one "autism mom" to another.

And this is my response.

Dear Autistic Child,

Here you are, you've made it through another year. I know at times it seemed like you wouldn't. I know it's probably been confusing and sometimes even unbearably painful for you. But, you made it because you are a kick ass warrior child. Raising neurotypical parents isn't an easy job at all. In fact, when I was younger my grandmother use to tell me raising parents is the hardest job in the world! Hey, and let's face it, having to live in their loud, stinky, itchy, and yucky tasting environments doesn't make it much easier either.

I know I am not you and as an autistic person I can only truly speak about my individual experiences. I don't know your exact journey. But,I do know frustration, pain, and misunderstanding. I get it.

I know it hurts when you hear your mom cry about all the things she's presumed you can not do. I know it's so painful when she continues to try to "fix" you when you weren't broken to begin with. I know that may make you want to give up trying to teach them how your world operates and how competent you actually are. I know it's difficult having your future pre-determined when you are only 6 years old. I'm not exactly sure how your mom knows what you'll be like when your my age (By the way I'm 35. I'm ancient! I know!) Perhaps, maybe when she got her autism mom badge she was also given a crystal ball.... a broken one of course.

I know you are competent. I know you have hopes and dreams just like any other child. I know you have the potential to achieve those things. I also know you need support, encouragement, room to grow and the ability to live a life without judgement. You need to know that there are people in this world that are JUST LIKE YOU... except they are adults who are living happy and fulfilling lives.

I know that there is and has been tons of exhaustion, fear, frustration, tears and discouragement while trying to raise your parents. I know because I've met many moms just like yours, and I'm here to tell you there is hope!

You see, "autism parents" can be heavily influenced by their peers. They are told they should behave and think in a certain manner. They have to learn... through their own self determination... to separate them self from the hive mind. They have to be shown the path of acceptance. AND... lucky for you... many more parentals are finding this path than ever before! That is because autistic advocates and their supporters (parents, friends, teachers, etc...) are getting the word out!

So hang in there, my friend... maybe this year will be your year for acceptance.

With so much love,

above picture reads with love in pastel colors and a pink flower to the left.