January 11, 2012

The More You Know (Insert Cheesy PSA Music Here)

So...I got to thinking.  STOP!  Do not stop reading, this is important!  I promise I was not thinking about more reasons I'm Smokin' Hot, Twitter, or what goes on over at the Twitter {disturbing}.  I read a beautifully written and thought provoking post on Making Assumptions, by my bloggity blog BFF, Angela, a.k.a. The Caffeinated Autism Mom.  Now I make assumptions right and left, up, down and every which way {despite I'm perfect} so I know you're thinking this is probably some sort of boo-hoo post or maybe a confession or something?  No, I'm not Catholic, so I'm not required.

This did get me thinking about the assumptions people make about Autism.  So I feel as a Mommy to a cool lil' dude with Autism, I should give you a short and sweet list of  Autism assumptions.  It'll just take a minute, check yourselves and read...quiz to follow.

  1. Autism is not caused by vaccines alone.
  2. Autism is not a result of poor parenting.
  3. Every child with Autism is not a genius.
  4. Every child with Autism is not the same, nor are their symptoms.
  5. Autism ain't cheap, and insurance has strict guidelines to services provided to those with Autism, if not flat out DENIED because of it.  Last year my son's services cost a cool $87,000, then I fed him too.
  6. In two family homes, is it common for one parent to have to quit their job to care for and manage the care of their child/children with Autism.
  7. Family Pediatricians are not equipped to diagnose Autism.
  8. "Rainman" is on the severe side of the spectrum, not the norm, but not to be dismissed.
  9. Children with Autism are easily overwhelmed, have sensory issues, cannot regulate their bodies which leads to stimming, scripting, and "bad behaviors" to help them cope.
  10. While not an excuse, sometimes, what appears as bad behavior to the assuming eye, is a child without the words to say, "this hurts, I'm overwhelmed, I need something, help me", this is their communication.

Autism does not discriminate.  It affects all genders and races across the world, blind to economic resources or income.  There is no known cure, we do not fully understand the cause; although genetics, environmental factors and biological factors play large roles.

If you have questions or concerns about Autism, feel free to leave a comment, or send me an email, bubblegumonmyshoe@yahoo.com 

If I left some assumptions out, by all means feel free to add;)

{Stay tuned for the next post when I pass on the Giving the Finger Award, I know, could be you; are you worried?}


  1. These blog posts are important especially for someone like myself that has no clue. It also helps prevent us from asking stupid questions and looking like a jackass. Even if I look like a jackass regularly anyway. And I agree. Some crazy stuff be on the Twitter.

  2. This is good stuff Cari... so many people know very little about it.

  3. Thumbs up. Sorry about the Twitter. Or not, as the case may be.

  4. Cari, because of you...I am able to look at autism differently.
    I was so excited this week when I was able to have a small conversation with my autistic piano student. He is looking me in the eyes...I have goosebumps. They have never had him on medication so I know that's not different..but something has changed in him. He answered questions (one word names only) and still says bus 89 ever other phrase, but still...he's coming along...I'm so excited.!!!! Thank you for your continued autism blogs!

    Nice Cheese:)

  5. Serves me right for not being on Facebook and Twitter yesterday...a post as good as this one *and* it even mentions me by name. How did I miss this? I guess it's more fodder for you to force me into being a Twitholic.

    I felt the bloggity blog BFF warm fuzzies when you said that my post about feeling like a jerk inspired you to write this one. I appreciate you taking what I wrote and putting it into a different perspective in order to address those assumptions we've all heard about our kids with autism.

    Hearing those assumptions in reference to your child can be frustrating as a parent. But, that has to be taken in stride because we live that life. Most people just don't *know*. You're helping them understand, and I hope they never have to know firsthand.

    Job well done, my friend!

    Sending lots of virtual hugs and high-fives,

  6. Can I add 11. Do not assume what works with one child diagnosed with autism will work for another. Just because you have your child on a particular diet, supplement, medication, or therapy doesn't mean I need to be made to feel bad that I am not either trying that or that it will "fix" my children too. I hate when people in the Autism Parenting Community like to pass judgement when they believe it's their way or you are failing your kid. Look I feel guilty enough about the fact that my kids are struggling I am not here to fight with someone that knows nothing about them. what's the saying, "you know one kid with autism, then you know one kid with autism" They are all different and respond differently. Can't we all just be accepting and supporting of each other like we expect of everyone else with our kids? :)

  7. @X-Tina- No stupid questions, ever! I love when people ask questions about Autism, the more we are educated, the better.

    @Nessa- 100% agree, I really should write about it more.

    @McAtee- Heehee, you make me laugh til I cry, hobbits and all. Glad to know you.

    @Ramona- Thanks;)

    @Suzi- Nice cheese! hahaha! He still says that, too. Thanks for sharing that story. And I love the work you do with children and music, thanks for working with Gabe; you are/have made such a mark on the world.

    @Angela- Hugs back. Your post was truly inspiring. I know we do deal with the assumptions every day, heck most of the time by just ignoring them. Sometimes educating almost feels preachy or like an excuse, and I have to let that go. Being silent is hurting my kid more so.

    @LLA- Angela and I have had this same discussion. For as supportive as the Autism community is, they can be judgmental about therapies, vaccines, diet, etc. Support is what we need the most. We know our kids the best, so we are the best advocate for them. Hang in there sweetie!


Let me know what you think by posting a comment or sending me an email, bubblegumonmyshoe@yahoo.com. I promise not to stalk you if you do!