Recognising Autism

CarolStarred Page By Carol, 30th Mar 2018 | Follow this author | RSS Feed
Posted in Wikinut>Health>Mind & Spirit>Positive Thinking

Autism is more widely known about, but there are still lots of children and adults who go undiagnosed, and need help. Read on to find out more.

Recognising Autism

When my son was born in 1971, very little was known about autism, so doctors couldn't really tell us what the future would hold. His condition was further complicated by learning difficulties, and severe health problems, but my son faced up to all his challenges with great courage, which prompted me to write his biography.

So for the last 46 years I have been using my writing, and my talks, to carry on raising even more awareness of this very complex condition. But when I found out that up until 1965 the mother was blamed for the condition, it prompted me to write a novel set in that time, but drawing from some of my own experiences.

Back in those day, sadly, children who were different in any way were hidden away, because public exposure meant either ridicule or being ignored by some, this was because people had not been educated to accept anyone who was different to themselves in any way.

It has now Changed

Thanks to programmes like CHILDREN IN NEED and COMIC RELIEF, the public have been invited to hear the stories of some very disadvantaged families, and even encouraged to donate towards giving them a brighter future. Such is the generosity of the British Public, that this can benefit these families a lot.

Autism in itself seems to be a more common condition amongst boys, and during my talks or author signings, I meet many people who come to chat because either a member of their family is autistic, or they teach autistic children, or they know a family with an autistic child.

This is in stark contrast to the 70s, I can honestly say I didn't know one other family who had an autistic child, I thought I was the only one, and sometimes, even with the love of my family around me, I still felt isolated. I am sure there must have been other autistic people around, I just wasn't aware of them.

I had a market amongst secondary schools when the heads bought my book for their library, and I was invited to come to school assemblies, ands speak, during which I explained that integrating children with autism into the same school as children without the condition is good for both, because the autistic children try to be like their peers, and the children without the condition learn that not everyone is the same, and some children need more help and patience to be understood.

Nowadays teachers are being trained to help children with autism, who have specific needs, and this is a big step forward for these children to being understood.

TV Programmes help too

Recently BBC aired a programme about an autistic boy of five, THE A WORD and how his family reacted when they found out about it. It was very successful, and there has since been a sequel, although the story covers the lives of the main characters as well. Children with autism have to be kept safe from their own actions sometimes, as one scene showed Joe, trying to escape his feelings of stress by climbing up onto the roof of his school. They also flirt with danger, going unnecessarily close to the edge of cliffs or hilltops, and it's very necessary to try and prevent this behaviour for their own sake.

A couple of evenings ago I watched a programme on Channel 4 called ARE YOU AUTISTIC? Anna Ryder-Richardson has an autistic nephew, and she went to investigate more about the condition.

What I liked about the programme was it was hosted by two girls with autism, and they explained quite clearly, that they were not " odd," it was simply that their minds were wired in a different way.

We also saw that girls with autism cope with the condition better than boys, as when they were speed dating, they found it easier to put on a different persona to hide it. Previously scientists believed that autism only affected boys, but now they have discovered differently. And because so many more people want to be diagnosed, there is worryingly about a two year wait, before they can get a result.

For some people, having a label helps them to understand more about themself, but others see it as a negative thing, and what we need to do now, is take on board what those two girls said. People with autism are not "odd" or "freaks," they are simply wired differently, and there should never be any shame attached to it. Everyone of us has some aspects of autism in our character. And remember some of the most intelligent people are autistic, they have amazing memories, shine at maths and sciences, and are often musically gifted. In fact I think we would be a lot worse off without the gifts they can share with us. In summing up I would say, it's cool to be autistic.
My thanks to Youtube for the video, and Wikipedia for one of the images, the rest are my own.

My Beautiful son
Here is my facebookpage
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Anna Ryder Richardson, Are You Autistic Girls, Autism, Diagnosing, Difficult, Fereak, Help, Odd, The A Word, Tv Programme

Meet the author

author avatar Carol
I am a proud mother and grandmother, and an author. I have had 7 books published. My hobbies are walking, swimming, and playing badminton. I try to raise more awareness of autism with my writing.

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author avatar Carol
2nd Apr 2018 (#)

Thanks Peter, for the moderation and star.

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author avatar Retired
11th Jun 2018 (#)

Thanks for sharing your book.

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author avatar Lesa Cote
17th Jul 2018 (#)

Thank you carol for the interesting blog. It is highly informative. I learnt a lot about autism from this blog.

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author avatar Carol
17th Jul 2018 (#)

Thanks for reading Lesa

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