|Leo loves going to his favorite restaurants|
"I started to walk to your table. You knew what I was going to ask. You saw the table I just spoke to pointing at you. I got to your table and you looked at me. You wanted the first word. You said…I did not "like" this story on Facebook, or share it, and I wish you wouldn't share without a comment, either. Why?
"'Do you know what it is like to have a child with Autism?'
"You were not rude when you asked the question. In fact, you were quite sincere. Your daughter could not have been more than five years old. She was beautiful and looked scared that I was at the table. She looked like she thought she was in trouble."
I appreciate stories about kind people doing nice things, but I would have handled the situation differently than the autism parent in the story:
- I certainly wouldn't say or imply anything negative about autism or being Leo's mom in front of Leo.
- Nor do I want people to feel sorry for me because Leo is autistic; he is awesome and I want people to know that.
- It's so important for people like Leo and families like ours to be out in public, without proactively or automatically feeling shame, or the need for social approval.
- However -- If Leo needs accommodation, or if we are disturbing people and we did not notice, I would hope both Leo and I would respond appropriately, in the moment.
- Diary of a Mom
- Parenting Autistic Children With Love and Acceptance
- Brenda Rothman: Mama Be Good
- Emma's Hope Book