Last week's announcement by Jerry Seinfeld that he is "probably on the autism spectrum" has been met with mixed emotions by those of us who are connected to the autism community. There are those who applaud Seinfeld for being open about his struggles with social engagement and those who fear that his announcement will somehow diminish the struggles of those on the spectrum. Both sides are excoriating one another in the blogosphere, highlighting the division between the parents of low-functioning kids and the parents of the high-functioning ones.
Sundays have become special days in our family. Not because of religious school, or because of any particular family activity. Sunday is the day that Ben’s friends come over, per the schedule established by a program coordinator after due consultation with all the families involved.
At our local middle school, "Communications" is a required course for all seventh graders, including our son, Ben, who has Asperger’s Disorder:
We will explore all the ways human beings communicate with each other, including reading and writing, speaking and listening, as well as non-verbal ways of communicating, such as gestures, visual arts, signs and symbols. We will also work on research, study, and organizational skills, in order to help you better clarify and express your ideas.
The other day, I had a vague sense that I was supposed to be doing something; that I’d forgotten something. I glanced down at my watch: 2:10 p.m., and I panicked. Ben takes his afternoon meds at 2:00 p.m. But I don’t have to give Ben his meds because he is away at camp for the month.