'My Life With Autism By Ben Sc., Bunk 20A'
08/01/2013 - 15:49
Ben Schorr
Ben Schorr
Ben Schorr

Editor's Note: Ben Schorr is the son of Rabbi Rebecca Schorr, a regular blogger here at the New Normal who writes about Ben, his autism and the highs and challenges of family life on the spectrum. This summer, Ben wrote the below article for his camp newspaper, The Round Lake Times. He gave us permission to reprint it here on the blog.

My Life with Autism by Ben Sc., Bunk 20A

Hello, my name is Ben S. I am thirteen years old and I am in Round Lake. I’m also Jewish. I have a disability called As- perger’s. It’s a type of autism. Don’t worry, it’s not contagious. I’m not all that dis- abled, but I definitely have my ups and downs. My explanation is that I think a little different than the average person. For example, at my old school, there was a rule when playing tether ball, which was to not stand in the yellow circle that they put on the court so you wouldn’t get whacked with ball. This girl did stand in the circle and of course got whacked in the head. Instead of going up to see if she was okay, I went up and said, “You know, next time you shouldn’t go in the yellow circle.” And then I walked away.

Now that I’m older, I know what I should have done. Every kid like me hyper fo- cuses on one activity. It could be on sports, science, com- puters, etc. I hyper focus on video games. Almost every time I talk to someone, it’s usually about video games. Mario, Zelda, Call of duty, Halo, Minecraft, Pokémon, whatever else it could be. After maybe three minutes, I look up and they are gone.

I also happen to be really annoying (not on purpose). I LIKE PIE!!! BLEH!!! How do you get Pikachu on a bus? You poke ‘em on!!! I’M A FIRING MA LASER!!! BLEH!!! (You probably won’t get that refer- ence). EVERYBODY DO THE FLOP!!! I baked you a pie. Oh boy, what flavor? PIE FLA- VOR!!! FAKE!!! You didn’t see anything. PAPAYAS!!! I LOVE YOU!!!

That’s all for now. If you see me around don’t make fun of me. I MEAN IT!!!
Bye bye.

Benjamin Schorr, a native Californian, is entering the 8th grade and is a lifelong lover of video games. He credits his first social skills teacher with teaching him the appropriate ways to respond to others in all sorts of situations including the type he shared in his essay. Ben has just returned from his second summer at Round Lake Camp and can’t wait for next summer.

Comments

Ben,

This article made me smile as it is practically an exact description of my son, Matthew. He is 13 and also has Asperger's syndrome. He is so completely focused on video games that he actually has no other interests. If allowed, he would spend his entire day playing online. He doesn't associate will with kids his age as they have little tolerance for his intensity for his likes and disinterest in theirs. I am hopeful that one day he will be able to express himself as eloquently as you did. You are a great kid!

Michele

Dear Ben, You are correct about being hyper-focused on things and often not saying the correct response in certain situations, my grand son has the same disability. I love him never the less. He like you are fine people you just think different and react differently that is all and yes you and Jadin (my grandson) can be rather a hand full at times, but you know, I would never give him up for a so-called normal child. Take care and never give up!

Ben, thank you for inviting us into your world for a bit. You help the rest of us improve by sharing this.

Wow, Ben! That was such a great post -- and so helpful to those of us who don't know much about Aspergers. Thanks for sharing :)

Great job, Ben!!! I 'd love to share this with some of my students!

Hi Ben! Thanks for sharing a bit of your life with us. Sounds like you're a pretty cool guy. Have a good rest of the summer!

Thanks Ben for sharing your story with us. I am impressed with how hard you have been working to figure out how to respond better to complicated situations. This essay helped me see the world from your point of view. Todah Rabbah

Ben, you are awesome. I can't wait to read your next post.

Ben, thanks for sharing yourself with us. It helps people like me who don't spend day to day time with a person with Asperger's to understand how you live your life and see yourself in your life. Keep up the writing, thinking, sharing. Enjoy 8th grade!

Love,
Cousin Marva (Tante Zelda's daughter)

Ben,

Thanks for writing this article, and for including real-life examples that really help to illustrate Asperger's syndrome. I'm friends with your mom and hope that you and I will have a chance to meet one day!

~ Jane.

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