Category: Autism

The Struggles of Women Who Mask Their Autism

By “camouflaging” their condition, many women on the spectrum learn to fit in—and risk psychological harm. Except for her family and closest friends, no one in Jennifer’s various circles knows that she is on the spectrum. Jennifer was not diagnosed with autism until she was 45 years old—and then only because she wanted confirmation of what she had figured out …

What teenagers can teach scientists about autism

I am the proud parent of two amazing, inspiring teenage girls. We fill our evenings and weekends with my unproven algebra tutoring and driving school. I sometimes struggle in my roles as tutor, math instructor, interpreter for the male gender … and father. Life Science Autism research and the real world My desire to better understand my daughters and to …

How To Fall Asleep In 1 Minute

Many of us have difficulty falling asleep at night. It’s a common problem, and I personally struggle with it. It’s not that I’m not tired – I am. It’s just really difficult to silence my mind. As I’m trying to sleep, my mind often wanders as I think about countless thoughts. At times, it can take me an hour or …

14 Words to Consider When You Befriend My Son With Autism

Damn social media. I have such a love-hate relationship with it. I love that we can meet in this little community huddled in our very safe, comfortable corner in the internet universe and share our common concerns, triumphs and general bitch sessions. But I hate that social media is a regular reminder of how alone my son is, both in …

3 Ways to Advocate for Your Child During the IEP Meeting

“There is no more powerful advocate for children than a parent armed with information and options.” –Rod Paige Tis the season for chocolate and wine and tears: it’s Individualized Education Plan (IEP) season. That means chocolate and wine is needed to hold back the tears. In the past week, I’ve read at least three social media posts that started something like …

Dad Serenades Disabled Son, Breaks Down When He Sees His Little Boy’s Smile

Some parenting moments are so bittersweet, it’s amazing anybody could get through them without shedding a few tears. Shauna Mitchell, of Lumberton, North Carolina captured that tender moment as it transpired between her boyfriend, Zach Oxendine, and his baby boy, Judah. Now, the video is going viral because it displays the perfect love between a father and his special needs son, …

Women with Autism Finally Represented in Movie Starring Dakota Fanning

In 2017, we got a great deal of media coverage of autism. The Power Rangers movie featured a character on the spectrum, and TV shows like Netflix’s Atypical and ABC’s The Good Doctor also premiered in the fall. But one arguable problem with these shows and movie was that all the autistic characters were male. And though men and boys tend to be diagnosed with autism more frequently …

How a High School Musical Gave My Autistic Son a Stage

This was the toddler who could not wear hats or mittens and who struggled with the change of seasons because that meant wearing different or new clothes. The little boy who wore the same doctor’s costume (shirt only) for three Halloweens in a row because costumes and change were terrifying. This was the elementary student who sat alone at lunch …

A Promise to My Son on the Autism Spectrum

To my beautiful son, I need to explain to you why there might be times you think, feel, see and hear differently than others. You see, son, you have something called autism. Sometimes this might affect your experience of certain places, textures, foods, lights, sounds and clothing. At times these things may be very overwhelming for you. Your senses are …