Saturday, April 30, 2011

Finding Meaning When You Have A Child With Autism

King Retorter is not sure exactly what to think about, Finding Meaning When You Have A Child With Autism. Interesting and great writing for sure.

Finding Meaning When You Have A Child With Autism

As a parent of a child on the autism spectrum there are days we can become so exhausted, so beaten down by the challenges that come along with the awesome responsibility of raising a child with autism that we invariably ask, if even for a moment,”Why me?”

Sure our public face may be one of the eternal optimist as we celebrate our child’s strengths and request that others do the same. The bottom line is that you reach the limit of your ability to give far more freqently and more quickly than other parents.

I’ll be flat out honest with you because that’s why you read what I write. I have days when I silently say, “Dammit, I wish my mind would just work the way I want it to!” That doesn’t mean I want to be someone different. It speaks more to those moments when I loose perspective on what being a parent and being on the spectrum is about.

What Is It All About?

For one thing, it isn’t about simply avoiding meltdowns, arguing with teachers and managing the latest crisis.

It isn’t about resigning yourself to the fact that your child is “different.”

And it sure as hell isn’t about accepting a life that involves feeling burnt out all the time.

If you feel that your life will inevitably no longer be yours because you have a child on the spectrum then it’s time to wake up and smell the helplessness you’ve bought in to. Life is meant to be experienced not endured, survived or suffered through. The person who said, “Life’s a bitch and then you die” clearly did more bitching than learning.

Now I’m by no means a religious person but I do go out of my way to find meaning in my life experiences, no matter how horrible they may seem at the time. I say, at the time, because perception is everything. The choices that have brought you to this moment in your life, and your beliefs about what options life has for you are not written in stone.

This isn’t as good as it gets unless you’ve decided a full life as a parent with a child on the spectrum is beyond you.

I have had nonverbal people on the autism spectrum using a talking board ask me to explain why this happened to them. I’ve had parents ask me when their child will grow out of this. To respond to them with, “I don’t know” is an unacceptable answer to me. I prefer, “Well let’s see if we can figure this out.”

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