Autism and The Driving Age My son is almost sixteen. In California, a teenager who turns fifteen and a half can, technically, get a learners permit to drive a car. What about my son? He doesn’t have his learners permit. Not yet. What’s the plan? My husband and I discussed our plan for when our son could attempt to obtain a learners permit and eventually learn how to drive. We are not against it. We feel he could someday drive a car. Our plan is for our son to wait. We told him that he could attempt to get his drivers permit the summer … [Read more...]

Autism and Dating Has my son been interested in dating? Not yet. Not too long ago, I asked him if he was interested in anyone. He said, “No, for the most part.” I asked him to explain that last bit. He said that he had an interest in a girl for a “really little bit,” but didn’t act on it. He decided he wasn’t really all that interested. So, that was that. Any other experiences? One experience is that he does “like” a girl. I don’t think it’s gone past that, and I have no idea how she feels about my son. I have asked him about her and … [Read more...]

Autism verses Neurotypical Embarrassment I read an article recently (see below) from an autistic adult who wrote about how neurodiverse people learn neurotypical social skills…and should they? How much do they need to know? Where’s the point when the neurodiverse gets to be the neurodiverse? Is it always appropriate that neurodiverse people (for this blog I discuss people with autism) learn each and every neurotypical social skill out there? And, always behave “properly?” How does this involve me? Just today I was reminded about this very … [Read more...]

Workability and Autism What happens with a teenager with autism? Well, first they’re getting closer and closer to becoming adults. My son is only a year and a half away from eighteen. An adult. His first year in high school, as a freshman, we focused on the transition to high school. Getting comfortable. Adjusting to no longer having an aide and having a foreign language class for the first time ever. Big transitions. After the first month or two, everything settled down. He earned good grades in freshman year and ended up enjoying the … [Read more...]

A Sad Story in our Autism Community I’m purposely going to keep this blog short, because this is not one that makes me feel warm and fuzzy. If anything, it makes me sad, and a little terrified. I’m blogging about suicide. One that affected our local autism community. What happened? In the spring, a seventeen-year-old with high functioning autism committed suicide on April 2, Autism Awareness Day by jumping from a parking structure at a Glendale, California mall. We didn’t know this young man, but friends of ours did. I remember hearing … [Read more...]

From One Autism Parent to Another I remembered an incident that happened not too long ago. It involved two autism parents and went like this… First, I was one of the autism parents. I was taking my son to an event at a small facility. The event was being run by another autism parent and also involved her own child. (Our kids had met when they both participated in a sport.) What happened at the event? The event itself was something that typically takes place with 20-30-year-olds, so both our kids were involved at a young-ish age. Nothing … [Read more...]

Kimberly Kaplan and 300 Autism-Related Blogs I guess you can call this a toot-your-own-horn posting because this is my 300th blog! I have not only written 300 blogs for my own website but those same 300 blogs have also appeared on ModernMom.com. How did I start on ModernMom.com? Well…through a recreational softball team, of course. Huh? My husband ran a recreational softball team years ago in Santa Monica. At some point, he picked up a player who happened to live near the field. This player spent a week or two walking down to this field … [Read more...]