My son is more like your child than he is different. He likes ice cream, swimming, staying up late, and YouTube. He is a trickster who loves to laugh, dance, and have fun.

He is a good friend. He loves people but may have difficulty connecting with others. This is the social challenge with autism. He is loyal and will accept you just as you are. If he is your friend, it’s like an elite clubonce you’re in, you are in.

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You may see meltdowns and behaviors. It may be hard to watch, but remember, it is even harder for him. He doesn’t want to be banging his head or screaming, but it’s how he deals with an overwhelming world.

He is so smart and so capable. Autism is a developmental disability, not an intellectual one.

Autism is a lifelong neurological disorder. We appreciate kindness and understanding but are not interested in trying some cure that worked for your friend’s cousin’s sister.

My son is a human being and should be treated as a human being. How you decide to treat him says nothing about him and everything about you.

My son may not be able to attend the birthday party, field trip, or sporting event, but it is still nice to be included. He may not be able to say hi, but it is still nice to be greeted. He can hear and see and will notice your attitude toward him.

We do not know what causes autism.

Researchers all over the world are working to better understand and determine the cause(s) of autism. We do not need to hear your theories on bad parenting, vaccines, or whatever your opinion is today. Let’s leave it to the experts. I’m too busy raising my child on the spectrum to debate this with you.

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My son will stim, flap, and engage in repetitive behavior. I will not interfere with this unless it is self-harming or unsafe. If it’s bothering you please move along or look away.

My son is AMAZING!

He is loved beyond measure. He is a perfect blessing and brings so much happiness to others. He is so much more than an autism diagnosis. 

Originally published on the author’s blog

Chrystal Venator

I am a proud wife, ASD Mom, Step-Mom and Pug Mom. In January 2017, at 21 months, my son was diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder. He is 5 years old and non-verbal. Since his diagnosis, I have become a full-time stay-at-home mom. I am 1000% focused on raising autism awareness and helping my son live a full and fun life. You can follow our journey at Stalen’s Way