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Resources

  • A manifesto for allies adopting an acceptance approach to Autism

    A manifesto for allies adopting an acceptance approach to Autism

    • Blogs
    • February 15, 2019

    If you are reading this manifesto, you are likely in the privileged position of being able to be an ally, and to help the Autistic people with whom you live or work or interact to realise their rights and feel loved and welcomed in the world, as they are, not as you (or anyone else) would like them to be. You have the chance to shape the narrative of Autism to one that unites us as a community defined by mutual respect and appreciation. I invite you to see Autism from an Autistic viewpoint, and to join our Autistic community on our journey to acceptance.

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  • The gift of unconditional love

    The gift of unconditional love

    Very often when I talk with parents of Autistic children, especially parents of Autistic children who are non-traditional communicators, one of their deepest and most abiding fears is that their child will never say the words, ‘I love you’ to them. It seems to many parents to be such a fundamental and profound need, to hear those words, spoken by their child, in their child’s own voice, like it is the ultimate proof of the bond between child and parent, the paramount evidence of shared devotion.

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  • Investing in relationships: The core business of parenting

    Investing in relationships: The core business of parenting

    There is no doubt that parents are busy. The struggle of the juggle is real. Work, domestics, parenting … they all very often result in parents being stretched too thinly. Let’s face it, it makes me exhausted just thinking about the never-ending rotation of cooking, cleaning, washing, groceries, ironing, not to mention the diplomacy required to negotiate the tricky business of sibling interactions, or the extra-curricular routines that require a dedicated taxi service, or the day-to-day skirmish required to achieve clean bodies, hygienic teeth, full tummies.

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  • Introspection on education

    Introspection on education

    • Blogs
    • September 10, 2018

    Currently in Australia, parents are scurrying to find the right educational setting for their Autistic children beginning school for the first time. Or for their children changing schools for the first, or second, or third time, as previous educational settings have become untenable or unworkable or detrimental to their child’s mental, emotional, social or academic health. Or all of those things. Our school year follows the calendar year, and I know many, many parents who are searching desperately to find the perfect fit for their Autistic poppet for the new year. Or, more accurately, who are searching for an adequate educational fit for their child.

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  • #TakeTheMaskOff (but what if I don’t know how?)

    #TakeTheMaskOff (but what if I don’t know how?)

    This afternoon I was describing the concept of Autistic masking to a close friend, who is not directly a part of the Autistic community. I explained that currently there is a robust campaign for Autistics to take their masks off, and to be who they are, authentically and genuinely, without censure, guilt, discrimination or repercussions.

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  • A plea to diagnosticians

    A plea to diagnosticians

    Dear Diagnosing Professional,

    See those parents sitting in front of you? Yes, the ones with the shadow behind their eyes, the furrow on their brows, the ones whose worry is a palpable aura surrounding them as their eyes dart between you and their child, sitting on the floor at their feet. See that father who sits with his arms crossed, leaning away from you as if to escape what you’re about to say? See that mother who is eyeing you with a mixture of hope and fear?

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  • Autistic pride day: celebrating my Autism

    Autistic pride day: celebrating my Autism

    When I was a little girl, my family was caught in a cyclone. It wasn’t a severe cyclone, but I remember walking up a concrete ramp towards the local high school that was the evacuation centre, and the wind being so strong that it took all my Dad’s strength to keep me from being blown off and away. I remember the feeling of being buffeted and battered by the wind, of having to put my head and shoulders down and battle my way through that gale that pushed me back and up and off at every step.

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  • Exploring Autistic space

    Exploring Autistic space

    When I first read Steve Silberman’s Neurotribes, one of the many moments that stayed with me was his description of Autistics coming together with other Autistics, the liberation and joy that is finding your tribe. He describes – as do many others – that moment when Autistics come together, without judgement, without censure, without fear, free to be themselves, tangibly and profoundly. From the moment I have been reading about Autistic Space (spaces by, with and for Autistics), I have been longing for the day that I might experience them and find my “people”.

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  • Minecraft matters

    Minecraft matters

    A few months ago, one my youngest son’s therapists and I were discussing the pre-planning I had done for his NDIS funding. As some of you will know, the NDIS requires you to recount, in detail, the rhythm and flow of your child’s daily life and activities. My little guy is happiest just being in the safe, predictable environment of home, where I home-school him and his two older autistic brothers, and he prefers playing with children much older than his age-peers. Our family narrative reflects this reality.

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