“My son is being suspended due to his autism”

Published on October 15, 2014 by in News

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 I am the mother of an eleven-year-old autistic son.  He just entered middle school this year and  has been suspended for a total of six days.  I feel that these suspensions stem from his disability, but I can’t get anyone to listen.  He was never suspended while in his last school, but is experiencing problems [...]

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“Look me in the eye” demands role reversal

Published on September 8, 2014 by in News

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The autism conference featured a panel of adults with Asperger’s. Each related their ups and downs with college, jobs, relationships, and independent living, then the moderator opened the session to questions from the audience. “Why is eye contact so hard for you?” a woman asked a twenty-something man on the panel. His gaze zeroed in [...]

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Each year, autism “awareness” rises to ever-louder levels of analysis and controversy. The Centers for Disease Control’s newest findings place  the incidence of autism in children at 1 in 68, up from 1 in 88 just only two years ago, and 1 in 750 when my son was identified in 1995. Each year, we who [...]

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Excerpted from Ten Things Your Student with Autism Wishes You Knew, Chapter 5 by Ellen Notbohm (2006, Future Horizons) FUNCTIONAL COMMUNICATION: MISSION ESSENTIAL The importance of providing a child with a functional communication system, in whatever form it may take, cannot be over-emphasized. Here’s an evocative scenario: imagine that your mouth is taped shut for [...]

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Autism parents redefine obligation, freedom

Published on August 11, 2014 by in News

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(from my Facebook archive, 2012)   Many years ago a co-worker, observing all that I had to do for my so-called special needs children, commented that I lived “a life of obligation.” Her insinuation was that I didn’t have as much freedom as parents of so-called typically developing children, and that this was to be [...]

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One-minute perspective from Bryce: “If you want something extraordinary to  happen, you have to ask yourself, how am I going to make something extraordinary with what’s surrounding me? Fantasy is fun, but reality is what’s surrounding us, so if that’s what you have, that’s what you use to make something happen. Another word for reality [...]

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Ever get that prickle that comes when you know you’re supposed to perceive something as well-intentioned, but instead you’re filled with a foreboding sense that it’s not? Me, yesterday, upon receiving a poster that reads, “I love someone with autism!” Maybe it was frantic bold type and the exclamation point that rang of trying too [...]

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Last week on Facebook I skewered the platitude “Time heals all wounds.”* Here’s another bromide in need of reality check: “No one is in control of your happiness but you.” Let’s not try this out on people living in or fleeing Syria, Iraq, Central African Republic, or any other place where the bodies and lives [...]

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A parent asks: I need some help. I’ve been fighting schools for ten years now and as my son is just beginning high school, they’ve informed me he’s cured and no longer needs his IEP. Is it possible to be “cured?” I’ve spent years working with him; he’s improved immensely. I’d love your thoughts on [...]

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Fisherman: Hey, kid! There ain’t no room in this town for a dragon, and there ain’t no room in this town for jinxes like you, neither! Nora: Well, if there’s enough room for a chowderhead like you, there’s more than enough room for a dragon. This memorable scene from the movie Pete’s Dragon leads into [...]

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