50 things you SHOULD NOT say to autism parents

Posted by theothersideofnormal on April 10, 2012 in autism |

Saw this on another blog and it’s just too good NOT to share.   Thank you to Christine Passey of “Welcome to Autism Island” for sharing this insightful post.  I think there’s a lot of good advise here.  Check out her blog at www.autism-island.com

“50 things you SHOULD NOT say to autism parents.

I wrote this post for two different people: autism parents, and the people we interact with.

If you are an autism parent I hope you find community in this post.  I hope you laugh and cry knowing other autism parents hear these awful comments too.
If you are not an autism parent, I hope this list gives you an idea of a few things you should not say to us.  I know most of you are not trying to be mean or hurtful with these comments.  Now, you need to know that we do welcome talking about autism.  In fact, we LOVE getting on our soap box and talking about autism.  Just be careful what you say.  We pour our blood, sweat and tears into autism.  So it can be a sensitive topic for us.  Because I know most of you want to be sensitive to our feelings I’ve also created a list of the 50 things you should say to autism parents.
Without further ado, a random order list of 50 things you should not say to autism parents.  Yes, I promise, autism parents have heard all of these comments, probably many times over.
  1. Autism is over diagnosed.
  2. I’ve seen Rainman and Temple Grandin, I totally get it.
  3. He must be really sad to run away so much.
  4. Stop being so sensitive, they were only joking when they called her a (insert nasty hurtful name here).
  5. He just needs to apply himself more.
  6. My kid does that too.
  7. Why do you let him carry that ______ around everywhere?
  8. I can’t believe you let your child run around naked.
  9. You need to make her eat more variety.  It’s not that hard.
  10. At least she can _____. (Talk, walk, smile, etc.)
  11. It must be so nice to get special treatment everywhere.
  12. Are you sure he has autism?  He seems fine to me.
  13. God knew you could handle this.
  14. How dare your child not look at me when I’m talking to them!
  15. He can talk, he just doesn’t want to.
  16. If you knew she might meltdown why did you come here?
  17. Teaching him is like training a dog.  How hard could it be?
  18. She can’t have autism; she looked me in the eye.
  19. I have a miracle cure for autism to tell you about.
  20. Disneyland would be much easier for you if you left him home with your mother.
  21. It’s good your baby is a girl so she won’t have autism like her brothers.
  22. There is nothing wrong with her.  She is just quirky.
  23. You just need to force her to sit through it, she’ll learn.
  24. I gave up on him and stopped trying.
  25. Have you tried what Jenny McCarthy did?
  26. I can’t believe she isn’t potty trained already.
  27. Why aren’t they doing ______ yet?  Have you been working with them?
  28. Isn’t she too old for a binkie?
  29. He is so spoiled.
  30. He can’t have autism, he is so smart.
  31. If you had enough faith in god, his autism would go away.
  32. She’s a girl, she can’t have autism.
  33. Did you know ______ causes autism? (Pollution, food, shots, microwaves, inbreeding, mean moms, drug addicted moms, power plants, loud talking, too much TV, etc.)
  34. Kids usually grow out of autism.
  35. They don’t need therapy because you’re such a good therapist.
  36. Good thing you’re done having kids.  You wouldn’t want another one with autism.
  37. How dare you drug your child!
  38. But you’re so normal, how do you have a child with autism?
  39. Does the mean she is really good at ______? (Math, art, music, etc.)
  40. He just needs to be medicated.
  41. He doesn’t have autism, he has discipline problems.
  42. Could you please take your son out? He’s disturbing everyone.
  43. The way your house is in lock down is absurd.
  44. You should mortgage your home to try ________ therapy.
  45. They are in a normal classroom?  Is that ok?
  46. You made up the autism diagnosis for attention.
  47. Make her come give me a hug.
  48. I can’t believe you won’t come to this crazy, busy, loud, sensory overload event.  They would like it I promise.
  49. Everyone has some form of autism.
  50. Can’t you just control him?”
Hope this helps ~ stay tuned for the next post – 50 things you SHOULD say to autism parents 🙂

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1 Comment

  • avatar avatarRachel says:

    I have definately heard a several of these many times (#1,4,6,8,10,11,12,15,16,18 insert him for her, 19,22,26 again him, 27,33,40,41,42 on a plane almost had this problem, 43,44,46,48,49 sister in law, 50 too many times to count). Since I only have a son, I have never heard anything about girls not being able to be autistic (where did that come from). However I have actually said a couple of these before myself both before and after having my son (#1& 10)

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