More on Autistic Empathy   Sometimes my child doesn’t succeed at understanding the feelings of others, than there are those times when I believe he’s beginning to get it. A recent incident involved a bunch of teenagers and a Smash Bros. game. What happened? One of teens can’t play this popular Smash Bros game because this teen gets over stimulated. My kid plays it often—so much so that he’s practicing for his first tournament. And, he’s learning from a different teen who has attended one of these tournaments. What happens when a … [Read more...]

The Autism Affirmation

The Autism Affirmation   This is what I call the Autism Affirmation: My son will state something, like “You’ll pick me up at five o’clock and then we’ll go to get a burger.” This will happen right after I’ve informed him of a plan…This sample plan is that I’m picking him up and a certain time and we’ll go get a burger for dinner. If this is something my son is concerned about—like maybe he feels he might not get the burger for some reason—then THE PLAN will be repeated. Again and again…until I affirm or approve the plan. And, I have … [Read more...]

An Autism Friendship-related Challenge

An Autism-Friendship-related Challenge   My son has a friend—which in itself is a big deal in the world of autism. And, it’s a big deal for our kid. My son has known a lot of kids, but has never had too many close friendships over the years. And, the “friends” he did have were mostly through social groups. He did stay in touch with one of them, and we see that friend every once in a while, but most of those have come and gone, for whatever reason(s). He especially never had a friend in the manner of, “Hey, mom, can I go over to … [Read more...]

Those Precious Moments with my son with Autism

Those Precious Moments with My Son with Autism My son’s history teacher recently gave him an assignment where he had to write about an important moment in his life that changed him in some way, or an important moment in the life of someone close to him that changed that person in some way. What did he write about? He wasn’t sure at first. He said, if he were to write about himself, he would write about his transition to middle school. Then, because according to the assignment it was okay to ask someone close to you, he asked me about … [Read more...]

Another Autism Conference

Observations of an Autism Teen Club   Recently, I sat just outside the door to my son’s Autism Teen Club meeting. These meetings take place bi-weekly with one meeting taking place at the facility while the other taking place somewhere within the community (within a twenty mile radius of the facility). What happened while I was sitting there? As an experience people-watcher/listener, I began by listening to one teen who sat about ten feet inside the room across from another teen. This teen was chatting nonstop. His preferred topics was … [Read more...]

Talking to Your Teen with Autism

Talking to Your Teen with Autism Before beginning a new teen club, we had to have an intake before the first session. The intake involved an intake specialist, my child, and myself and my husband. We had to sign off on some of the rules for the club and discuss expected behaviors and participation. What is this teen club? This teen club meets twice a week. The first meeting is a planning and social meeting. The second weekly meeting is a community interaction meeting. These meetings have different goals each week—vocational, volunteering, … [Read more...]

Autism and the Sudden Death of a Teacher

Autism and the Sudden Death of a Teacher My son's 7th grade Computer Applications teacher died suddenly last weekend. What happened? The students and parents were informed that the teacher died of a sudden heart attack. It was a typical day on the Friday in question. My son had this teacher for fourth period, as per usual. The school broke for lunch after fourth period. During fifth period, this teacher began to not feel well. I don't know all of those details, but the students were asked to leave the class and an ambulance was … [Read more...]