Wednesday, April 02, 2014

1 in 68

Depending on whom you ask, today is World Autism Awareness Day, World Autism Acceptance Day,  or Everyone Matters Day.  From my perspective, awareness, acceptance, and mattering are all vitally important, so I say bring 'em on.

Last week, in the lead-up to these events and to the month of April, which is Autism Awareness Month, the CDC released the latest autism prevalence rates - now 1 in 68 children and 1 in 42 boys in the U.S.

I have a new post up at The Huffington Post with my thoughts about what it all means.

Click here to read it.

And happy awareness and acceptance day.  Remember:  you matter.


Anonymous said...

First- I love how you communicate Bud's needs and understand the reasoning behind what he does so well.
I think it is important to recognize that Autism is a wide spectrum that includes both very severe and very high functioning people. It's only in acknowledging that can you understand why "celebrating" offends some people and focusing on the "epidemic " offends others.
You can raise awareness about how our children have issues to help the general public understand how acceptance, patience and understanding can go a long way in making our children function in their world. However, you also have to make people realize that our children are also suffering from issues that are truly physical like GI issues, anxiety, migraines, etc. that present in behaviors that aren't "cute" or just a part of autism.
Do I wish my son could sleep through the night at age 11, independently wash, brush and dress himself and be able to go to the bathroom without an adult to oversee things, have enough language to be able to tell me when something hurts- YES! Does that make me unable to appreciate his quick wit, his full blown laugh, the way he manipulates another lollipop out of me or the big hugs I get at the end of the day- NO!
So I applaud those who speak out to provide information to keep another family from losing sight of their child within the diagnosis and help them to face the challenges my son has to deal with AND I appreciate those who don't allow the media to sugarcoat how truly devastating the autism diagnosis can be for an individual and the entire family.

So share the joy of who your child is, but continue to do everything in your day to day life to give him/her tools to better deal with their challenges and educate those around you on what autism means to you and how they can understand and effect change.

Stop and breath! You're an autism parent and you will do your best! That's how we are made!


MOM-NOS said...

Thank you, Kim. Incredibly well said.

I also want to offer that at 11, Bud didn't sleep through the night, independently wash, brush, or dress himself, or go to the bathroom without an adult to oversee things, but at 14 he has come a long way in all of those areas. Hope you find that the same will be true for your guy!

Full Spectrum Mama said...

Nice balanced approach here ;)Will go over to HuffPo...

Sepatu Boots said...

it's very georgous.. :)

Emily Morson said...

This is beautiful. Thank you for cutting through all the mess and seeing what this autism awareness/acceptance stuff is really about.

How is Bud doing these days? I can't believe he's 14 already! I still imagine him the way you describe him in Dr. Strangetalk, which I still share with anyone who will stand still long enough to listen. ;) said...

Thank you for sharing this valuable information. I am a special needs mom as well. My son is on the spectrum and also suffers from chronic health issues. There seems to still be so much to understand! I know I get overwhelmed at times. I love your blog name - very fitting!