Buddy is now 26, so I sometimes wonder what he would be like if he were a typical 26yr old.
I know he would be funny.
He would love pizza AND broccoli.
He would not like wrinkled clothes or striped shirts.
He would be slightly self impressed. Not passing a mirror without taking a gander at himself.
He would be very laid back and non-confrontational.
I imagine that he would work with his hands…fixing airplanes or cars (like his uncle and grandfather) most likely.
He would love dogs and cats, and would have 2 dogs, one named Scooby and one Clifford.
He would drive a 4×4 but have desire to also own a shiny sports car and a John Deere.
He would watch old sitcoms and documentaries. And have a great knowledge of music and a vast library of CDs.
He wouldn’t be a leader or a follower…but a “by your side all the way” friend.
He would be a sweet, loving, affectionate person.
How do I know? Because these are all traits and likes that he already has.
He is a multi-tasker: He likes to watch TV, listen to his headphones and play with his vast collection of airplanes all at the same time.
He is connected: he would be devastated if the satellite were down or if we didn’t have an emergency iPod.
He is Tech-savvy: He can find the buttons on most devices and figure out how to get them to work in his favor. Also known as “The Button Pusher”
He wants instant gratification: When he wants something, he expects it immediately.
He believes that everything should be shared: Especially if food is involved.
He is team-oriented: He cannot go anywhere without someone going with him.
He is over 25 and still lives at home, with no desire to ever move out.
So, I have come to the conclusion that it’s not autism…he is just a millennial.
Oh yeah, he thinks he is the center of my world…well, yeah, he has me there.
A few weeks ago I met a lady and I shared that my son has autism, she got all excited (as we special needs parents often do). It’s kind of like finding another member of the club. Anyway, she was telling me that her young son was recently diagnosed. She was so happy that she finally found the answer to why her child was “different”. She said that his IQ is at genius level, and that he was talking in full sentences and using “big” words as a toddler. I feel sure that this child can already see how he surpasses other children his age.
I was visiting with a friend the other day and she was sharing with me that a member of her family has a young son with autism and the parents are at odds with whether or not to tell the him. He is at the age where he is becoming aware of the children around him.
My son is 26 and non-verbal. His last IEP evaluated him at the level of a 6 month to 3 year old. Have I told him that he has autism? No, I have not sat him down and said “Son, there is a physical reason that you are different from your peers.” But we have used the words around him. We have always discussed his autism in his presence, talking about it as if it’s no big deal. Because, we feel that for him and us, it really isn’t. (We have been dealing with this for 1/2 my life…there’s nothing new here)
Now if he was higher functioning, and unaware of his diagnosis, I would have told him that he has autism as soon as possible. I think it would be unfair NOT to tell him. There must be enough questions in his head adding to his frustration and anxiety. And one simple word could ease his pain and confusion. It’s my job to protect him, and keeping him bubble wrapped would only help me, not him.
What do YOU think? Have you told your child? And if not, why haven’t you?