I came across this article because, in the Internet sense of knowing someone, I know the author. I can assure you that neither of us would know the other if we sat across a table from each other, but I purchase books and tools from her husband’s companies and then the Internet takes over.
So autism. It’s not easy on the parents, it’s not easy on the child, and without kindness from others it’s a total mess. There. I’ve wrapped a heart wrenching and complicated topic in a few short sentences. Time for you to read: Cutting with kindness.
That’s a beautiful story. But let’s extract the autism for a moment. When I was growing up one of the things I was taught was “patience”. Now patience, like all things, has a balance to it. There’s the “it’s not all about you” patience. And then there’s the “put up with other’s crap” patience.
I know I’m far less patient (both kinds) with my family than with not family or strangers. I expect more from the people closest to me, and so I have less patience with their needs. And, of course, I feel safer expressing myself in glorious detail, dissecting exactly how their actions affect me with possible means for rectification. Feels kinda backwards to me right now after reading that story. As I’ve said before, living an examined life is a PITA.
The lesson here however is not in being more patient, kinder, and understanding to children with autism. Although everyone should be more understanding of the families it’s not my point. Also, there will always some people whose problems are too deep—who will take whatever you offer no matter how much. Let’s avoid discussing that problem…it’s one side of the bell curve. So, the point is… it can only improve my life to continue to be ever more aware of people’s needs and respond kindly, thoughtfully, with ever greater awareness.