What I want to change in you may sound a bit of a presumptuous title, but it leads me into what I have always wanted to accomplish with this blog.
This post has really come to a reality after starting to go through a blogging course. It suggests that you need to be able to define how you are changing people with your blog.
So, I thought I would examine my motives and put them down for you to all read.
Although autism today is a much wider known about disability, there are still many people who know little about it and can make presumptions about it and the children and adults that have been diagnosed.
If I were to look at myself as an example. Up until 3 years ago, I have very little knowledge about autism and what it means to have a diagnosis, or when a family member or child has a diagnosis.
I had never appreciated the challenges that some of my friends, who had children diagnosed with ASD, just what they were going through. Also, I never knew the challenges their children were going through either.
Obviously fast forward to today and I have a much greater understanding of autism, an understanding of how a diagnosis can affect a person and a family. In fact, I have a greater understanding of myself - where I have traits and why I may feel the way I do at times.
So, when I created this blog, it was really about sharing our experiences in a hope that it will create a change of understanding in the people that read my posts.
Now, let me first say that I know not everyone will be changed by me or this blog. Some people have very fixed ideas and I know we can’t change them. However, I am really looking at you, the person that can change with a little more understanding.
Let me give you a common example of what I want to change your thinking. Although my son is in a special needs school, in my daughter's school there are a few children with autism, one in her class.
One of the common things I have seen is that, quite often, the child with autism doesn’t get invited to birthday parties, play dates or other activities (when my son was in pre-school we witnessed this too). Some parents don’t invite as they think they will be disruptive, children don’t invite because of the difference. I’ve seen virtually every child in a class invited, all but one child.
Parents with little understanding have this instant thought that they will be naughty or disruptive or something else. It may be true that they could have a meltdown or issue, but there again so could any child that is not diagnosed with ASD.
There is an automatic presumption and it really makes me sad to see,
What can I do? Well, for a start instilling in your children the idea of making an effort with one of their peers who may be quiet, different, Standoffish. Children get a lot of their judgement from us, so teach them not to judge people who are different.
Spend time to get to know the parents of a child that has autism. Understand that they would love to have their child go to parties, be involved with other parents. Being a parent of a child with autism can be lonely too if other parents avoid or just think your child is naughty.
Take time to invite round for play dates, parties. One little change you can make to the environment could be a massive difference to how they manage being in a different place.
Just take the time to think and to make the effort to not leave out that child in you kids class who may have autism.
With this blog, I want to help you change. I want to show you, invite you along to give you an insight into how a child with autism is different but is also no different. I want to change you to be more understanding.
I want to change you so that the child in our kids class with autism is invited along to the birthday party, does have fun and is accepted.
Let’s all make a positive change in the world - starting with our children and acceptance of all.