We Autism mums have many of this well-meaning friend, who are really trying to help. Sadly, the gap between the neurotypical world of parenting can be too big to jump in some cases.
Been a parent myself of a 14-year-old with severe autism I myself am careful with advising others, as each child, each family, each circumstance is different and there is no ‘one fits all’ solution.
"Trying to understand and ask questions is the best one can do for an autism mum."
That friend was creative about how my son could celebrate Mother’s Day and do something special for me. She was feeling sorry for me and I could see the desire to be resourceful. We mothers have the ‘fix’ every situation button on autopilot.
- Does he draw or writes? Can he make you a card?
- Or, can his carer go shopping with him for a Mother’s Day gift?
Despite repeated reassurance that ‘really, I am not expecting anything and that I am lucky to have a good boy every day of the year’…. None of that was acknowledged.
I have no complaints against anyone’s effort to assist but sometimes the assistance is too much about what that mom would won't/expect from their child, and lot less about the fact that after 14 years I have submitted to the fact that pleasant surprise is more magical than salty disappointment.
"Expectations is a word we don’t use that much in autism community."
I couldn’t help to think that the press for a conclusion as to what my son should do to fit into the classic stereotype of Mother’s Day, reminded me of all the things I forgot about, stop wanting and it made me sad for a moment.
Only for a moment, as one look at him and my smile was back on, like a lipstick that never fades.
Moral of the story is: can we support others more like the way they need to be supported and less the way we would want? After all, we are all different.
If words faid, there is nothing that box of chocs won't fix