Why It Is OK for My Autistic Child to Be "Weird" by Chloe LaFrance
Many therapies and programs for autistic children are designed to help them learn to look more normal and minimize autistic-like behaviors. Hand flapping, noises, stims, etc., are often discouraged by MOST educational and therapeutic communities. As an autistic parent, I am here to tell you how ridiculous this is. Stimming behaviors are used by many autistic people to:
- process new information
- calm themselves
Imagine your body is a tea kettle and every time you stim you let off steam. There are many types of stims. For non-autistic people, you might workout, overeat, cry or play an instrument as your stress relief. In fact, these are usually encouraged behaviors, but my child is "weird" because of his choice of stress relief. How so? Acceptance, not awareness, is key.