I’ve debated with myself on whether to post this or not but this story is quite poignant given it is the last day of Autism Awareness month. I would like to think that Autism Awareness is a thing of the past. That we as a whole have moved on to Autism Acceptance more so to Autism Understanding, but that is just not the case for some. There are still people that need to be educated and need to be held accountable for their prejudiced views of those with autism.
Is Jackson upset that we aren’t going to be there?
Why yes he is and his parents are furious that you even asked this question. There appears to be some individuals in our life that believe since J can’t express himself verbally that it is comparable to him not having feelings. Let me educate you on this, J feels and hears more than he will ever let on. He is consistently assessing his surroundings, taking in what and who is around him. The more that he is in these settings and around people he sees on a regular basis, the more he becomes comfortable with them. So yes, though J won’t be physically upset that you won’t be there, your lack of presence to him has been noted.
Here’s a great story about being present. J’s godfather, Kevin, has worked so hard on his relationship with him. It hasn’t been easy. J use to freak out when Kevin would come. He knew that Dad’s ‘other’ best friend was over so his attention would be divided and not directly on himself. Over the years we have worked to have J say hi to Kevin every time we are together, which we do for most everyone, and on occasional give a hi-five or knuckles. This interaction has really evolved there relationship to the point that J is genuinely interested in Kevin and interacting at times without be prompted. It’s great to see this and we look forward to watching their relationship grow.
So back to the question that was asked, here’s my question for you based on your logic. If J doesn’t feel good but he can’t tell me so, does that mean he isn’t? If J is crying because he fell down but there’s no physical sign to show me he is hurt, does that that mean he isn’t? If Dad is working late but J can’t say I miss Dad, does that mean he doesn’t? Your question has been made more into a statement of what you think of autism, your lack of understanding, acceptance and respect for our son. It shows that absolutely nothing over the past years have sunk in concerning and supporting autism and more so J with his autism. We have interpreted your words to mean; your child doesn’t understand, so therefore it doesn’t matter.
Here’s the thing…IT DOES MATTER!