Wednesday, December 22, 2010


This is not going to be a happy post. I am just very frustrated, and sometimes I am not even sure what I am frustrated with. It seems like nothing I can do is right, in my eyes or anyone's for that matter. I feel like I should be doing more for my kids, I feel guilty if I try to take a break. I even feel guilty for writing on this blog while they watch "Scooby Doo". It doesn't help to see posts on facebook and other places where parents put themselves out as being the "Mother of the Year". I guess with typically developing and special needs kids you will always have those parents who make you feel like you could do more. I have been told by a family member that I don't do enough, I should be in the floor with my children their every waking hour, maybe I should, but then I am confused when the same family member tells me that I spend "to much" time trying to get services for my kids, and that I shouldn't spend so much time thinking about their disabilities, or talking about them.

I just want to say.....I feel bad enough, there are things I want for my kids that I am just not able to get. A lot of things bother me right now that probably shouldn't, I am easily offended by things that probably shouldn't offend me.

I have had a lot happen in my life over the past 3 years. I don't really need to go into all of that, but I am going through a grieving process, multiple grieving processes actually. Maybe I am stuck, who knows, maybe I do need counseling. But, having people constantly tell me what I am doing is wrong, making me feel guilty for trying to take the occasional break, well that isn't making me feel any better.

I love my friends and family, I want a good relationship, but sometimes I feel so confused.

I know I am not the only mother who blogs about her kids, I know I am not the only mother who writes things on facebook to try to raise awareness. So, why are people trying to make me feel like a bad person, why do people act like I should be ashamed of my son's Autism diagnosis and hide it.

I am very proud of my boy, the fact that he is on the spectrum does not make me any less proud. Actually I feel more joy at his achievements than I would if he were a typically developing child.

Finally, my biggest pet peeve....STOP telling me that "A" isn't "autistic enough" that because he is so high functioning and he is so smart that I should let people think everything is okay, that he is some sort of child prodigy. He is smart, but there are issues, that is why I take him to doctor's and multiple therapy's. That is why I spend my nights online looking for the latest in treatments, even special diets. I tell people to raise awareness, autism isn't always what it appears to be, it isn't always "rain man" or a child in the corner banging his head into the wall. I suspect and I have seen that there are many children (and adults) out there, smart children, who are going undiagnosed. Children who struggle with social skills, smart people who lock them selves away, who have to be home schooled or who are miserable in regular school, adults who have a hard time holding down a job, who spend their lives on their computers because they don't have the social skills to go out into the world. Young children with whom intervention may make a world of difference in their lives as adolescents and adults.

So if you don't like the way I do things, then don't try to make me feel bad, you don't have to read my blog or be my friend on facebook. I struggle every day. I will do what I have to do, if you don't agree with my methods then I am sorry. Especially don't criticise if you have never dealt with what I am dealing with.....

Here is some information about families dealing with Autism, and what YOU can do to help.


Jeff and Connie said...

Wow, believe it or not a lot of us have the same feelings. We just don't admit them. Denise, I'm sure that you aren't mother of the year, but I have yet to meet anyone that I would qualify. We wear our own shoes and learn to walk in the pair we are given. You keep walking! We all have plenty of challenges, but one thing I know, Gos is good all the time and whether we feel him or not he's with us. I also believe that one day all kids grow up to be human and most of them come our alright even when they have less than perfect parent. Just do your best and let God do the rest

dotcomkari said...

*hug* I thought you could use it!
And try not to think about what others think. I know it isn't always easy to do, but DO what you can do and be there as much as you can.. but also live your life. Every parent needs a break away from their kids once in awhile or they would get burnt out. And NO parent is perfect. You are the best parent you can be and that is all that matters. You do what you think is right for your son and you love him for him.

And I admire you for being the mom you are! and your a great friend. So screw all the haters out there! :) YOU rock girl!

MeghatronsMom said...

Well said.

It only gets worse with him not being "autistic" enough. It sounds like he falls into the gray area- no disable enough to be disabled, not typical enough to be typical. I struggle every day with this. I sometimes think our road is rougher.

Rachel Cohen-Rottenberg said...

Denise, I just found your blog from Faces of Autism and this post really touched me. I'm a mom, and I have Asperger's Syndrome. I really know the feeling of not doing enough for your kid--I think any good parent feels that, which is how you know you're doing okay! And I also really know how it feels to be told that I'm not "autistic enough," which is really just people's way of saying that they've got a very stereotypical, limited, two-dimensional picture in their heads and I don't match up. And to that I say: Fine. Be that way. I have nothing to prove. I'm too busy living my life.

Aim high with your son. There are a number of things I'm unable to do, but there are an even greater number of things I do quite well, and with some creative adaptive strategies, I've been able to work around a lot of my challenges. I'm 52, so I didn't have anything like the support your son has. In fact, my family was quite dysfunctional, but I've managed to make a meaningful and happy life for myself nonetheless.

Take care of yourself. We moms tend to put ourselves aside too much.

Mom said...

Hang in there! My 17-year-old son is mild to moderately autistic. I wish I could give you the hope you need right here, but visit my blog and read about our journey. They can achieve amazing things! I tell my son he is special and he has a special place he can go inside himself that we don't have. Autism is not negative for him. He has embraced it. It is who he is.