Having a child with Aspergers Syndrome
By Mary Smith

Whenever you have children you always hope that they are going to remain healthy and strong for a long time. You pray and hope that nothing will affect your child and that it will grow up happy and strong and achieve everything they set out to in life. Well my son has Aspergers Syndrome, and it’s a condition that while at times can be difficult, is actually not that bad and extremely manageable. I think a lot of people are scared off by the fact that he can be labelled with a condition and that can make people feel sorry for him and sorry for me as I have to deal with it. Well it’s not actually the worst condition somebody can have and as I said it’s not as bad as what people thing. I will first start off by saying how I first knew something was wrong. It was when he was younger, around 2 I believe, that I really noticed how strong in communication he was becoming.

He had the ability to string lots of sentences together and talks almost like a regular child would if they were a bit older. He then also had the ability to do lots of reading at a young age as well, which to me wasn’t really a sign that anything was actually wrong, more a sign that I had a gifted son. Initially I was actually quite happy and proud of his achievements and looked forward to raising a son that had the potential to be extremely smart. But I soon noticed that he had difficulty in adapting to social situations and really didn’t have many friends. We had a 5th birthday party for him and invited lots of kids from his school, but my son was extremely rude to them when they came around and basically ignored them completely, although when it came to talking about all things to do with dinosaurs you just couldn’t get him to shut up. Still I put this down to some awkward childhood genes and didn’t really notice too much about it, but as he grew older he still struggled when it came to talking with other people and making friends, as well as having even more trouble when it came to understanding jokes and things that were said to him in humour. The final straw really came when I noticed how strict he was at following rules and sticking to a schedule, and at the age of 7 I took him to a childhood therapist to see if they could tell me that anything was wrong.

Sure enough they gave him the initial diagnosis of having Aspergers, and this of course got me worried at hearing him having an actual condition. But after reading up on the syndrome and learning everything I could about it, I really did learn that it wasn’t something to necessarily get too worked up about. If anything I was almost proud of him. That sounds probably extremely odd, I know, but the fact that he is so good at many things is almost a blessing. He is now 18 and at University studying to become a palaeontologist as he still holds a strong passion for everything to do with dinosaurs. He is never late and always sticks to a strong schedule which is fantastic when it comes to organising things. And I still make sure he makes regular trips to a therapist which I know he doesn’t like but I think he does know that it does help him out a little bit with his daily life. I think it’s important for all parents and people out there to know that having a child with Aspergers really isn’t something that should be considered bad, and it actually is a very manageable condition that can bring a bit of difference in your life. If somebody like me can live with a son with the condition then I think you will find that most people can as well, and you should always do as much research into the condition that you can so you can understand it properly. Don’t ever stop loving your child as you will always love them no matter what they have, that’s easily what I have found and discovered.

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