With full apologies and acknowlegement to the people I nicked this from and adapted.
If you're a parent with a child on the spectrum, you've probably responded to the same annoying remarks and questions a thousand times. Here's a handy list of responses that...you'll probably never use out loud (but are fun to imagine using)!
1. He can’t be autistic -- he can talk! (or make eye contact, smile, engage)
And yet, amazingly, he’s still autistic! Y’see, autism is a spectrum disorder, and that means …
2. Oh, he must be SO good at maths! (or science or music)
Actually, his great talent is in memorizing and reciting lines from Sponge Bob or anything else which helps him communicate his wants and needs or emotions.
3. All he needs is more discipline, and he’ll get the message. You need to be firmer with him.
Yup, it’s true -- if you give a child enough time outs, he’ll just stop being autistic. And if I speak French to you loudly enough, you’ll become fluent!
4. You poor thing, it must be so upsetting to have a child with a disability. (Thankfully nobody has ever said this to me about J)
Yes, it can be hard. And pity really helps me to get through the day and feel better about myself and my child. So…thanks so much!
5. Will he be able to go to college (or get married or hold down a job)?
Hm. Good question. By the way, has your daughter’s divorce been finalized yet? And I’m so sorry to hear that your son was recently laid off from his job…
6. I have a friend whose child was autistic, and she cured him!
Wow! So I guess she’s enjoying the millions she made after figuring out how to cure autism? I bet her second home is a yacht!
7. If he can’t behave properly, you shouldn’t BRING him shopping!
Wow -- that would be great. Should I fax you my grocery list, or send it by email? I’ll really enjoy the delivery service! (Actually I try my best to either shop online and get it all delivered or shop when J is at school)
8. We can’t include him in typical classes, it wouldn’t be fair to the other kids.
Hm, that’s an interesting perspective. So I guess you have a pretty big endowment to pay for all the law suits? That must be great!