Friday, 27 March 2015
Today marks the start of Autism awareness week.
Personally, I am after acceptance, because let's face it, everyone is 'aware' of autism. It is now time, with at least 1 in 88 people in the UK having been diagnosed as autistic, for society to at least TRY to catch up. It's no good society telling everyone 'be yourself' for it to then say 'but just not like that.....'
Everyone is different. All of us. We are not the same as each other. Some are that little bit more different. What's wrong with that?
Do those people not also have the right to go about their lives without being mocked or bullied or laughed at or called weird or even worse, retards??
Tell me, who is the one with the problem really? The one who is born with a neurological disorder that makes them see the world differently, or the one who abuses said person because of this?? Who is the one that needs to change?
There is no 'one size fits all' in society. No little boxes that we all fit into. We all deserve the freedom to be ourselves as long as that is not harming anyone else. Sure, my child can be loud at times, he can have meltdowns when he is out in public, but really, does that deserve condemnation and ridicule? If that is the worst he does, then who is he really hurting other than himself and us, because we hurt watching him when he gets so anxious about a noise or a smell that he can't cope with, that all he can do is explode to get that anxiety to go away. Should I just keep him locked in a cage just so he doesn't bother anyone else for 5 minutes out of their lives??
Why does that meltdown deserve the disparaging looks, or the tuts of disgust or the shakes of the head that are given in our direction?
The ones with such a lack of compassion are the ones that deserve those looks and tuts and sighs, not my child.
Just because he has no outward sign of disability does not mean people should judge. Why are people so quick to judge anyway? It must be wonderful to be so damn perfect that you can judge someone else without even knowing any of the background. Really, what is it like to be so perfect?? I'd really love to know!!
Don't judge people. Be kind. Be nice. Be compassionate. Everyone is fighting their own battle. Just because it is not immediately apparent to you what that battle might be, doesn't mean you should pass judgement.
Above all, understand that everyone is different, and that some are more different than others, but that everyone still deserves the respect you expect to be shown yourself.
Autism is not a disease, it is not contagious, it is not bad nor is it something to be ashamed of. Autism has many, many challenges. Those who live with it every day have enough to deal with, be it trying to make sense of the world, or trying to communicate feelings or wants and needs (something most of us reading this take for granted) or trying to overcome anxieties to do something as simple as travel on a bus or go to a restaurant. Or whether it be someone like me, a parent who is trying her best to help her child do these things, sometimes unsuccessfully, a parent who's heart breaks when her child tries so hard to do something he should be doing at his age, but can't. A parent who doesn't intentionally want to annoy you when you are out shopping or eating out, and who tries to keep her child meltdown free by planning each outing with military precision, but then something she can't control happens and all hell breaks loose.
Do you think the stares and the tuts help? Don't you think me and my child have enough to cope with already in our lives without society judging us too?
Just stop. Just think. Just keep the tuts, stares and judgements to yourself.
They say more about society than they ever could about me and my child.