Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Autism parents are NOT like Kelli Stapleton

Kelly Stapleton is a really bad example for autism parents. Most of us are not like her at all. I love my son with autism. He is the most amazing kid ever. I can't imagine wanting to hurt him. We have had some hard times and I have shed many tears feeling like I didn't know how to reach him or get him to understand me. I've been frustrated when he gets overwhelmed and I don't know how to help him calm down. But I don't lose hope and I don't think about doing harm to him.

Kelly Stapleton is not the only person who had a nonverbal child who had violent outbursts. My son is a gentle person but when he is overstimulated he has been known to hit or kick because he can't help himself. So we have to be sure not to have too much noise around him or too many people talking to him or touching him so that he doesn't feel trapped or overwhelmed by his senses.

It can be hard. I am a born communicator that never stops yacking (my family jokes that I came out of the womb talking). I am an extrovert who loves being around people and I'm a touchy-feely hugger type of gal. My son is exactly the opposite. He's nonverbal, shy, thoughtful, quiet, and introverted. It was difficult for me to learn how to be the mother that he needed at first.

I admit in the beginning when he was young and I was still adjusting  I felt a little sorry for myself some days. I'm not proud of that, but it is the truth. But even in my pity party days I still knew my son's comfort was more important than my social schedule. I never resented my son for being different and I don't blame his autism. Everybody is different. Chicken noodle soup isn't a better soup than gazpacho. It's just a different type. Both are delicious. And through my son I have learned that a quiet evening at home can be just as good as a night out on the town if you're spending it with people that you love.

I don't need to fight against his autism. His autism is a part of him. I am proud to be an autism mom. I love my son and I would never try to end his life.

By LaTasha Banks

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