Okay, there are times when we all need to rant and rave a bit. I think I’ve hit that point.
A few too many times now, I’ve heard people blame Asperger’s Syndrome for what they don’t like about their children.
For example: “She throws tantrums when she doesn’t get what she wants, but that’s just the Asperger’s Syndrome” or “You’d never know he has Asperger’s Syndrome, so he’s okay, but it’s different with her…” or just in general blaming Asperger’s Syndrome – as though it was a fire-breathing, two-headed monster – for everything less than lovable about their kids.
Asperger’s Syndrome is not some evil spirit that possesses someone, causes them to do something undesirable, and then leaves them again.
Someone doesn’t have an attack of Asperger’s Syndrome, as though they had a seizure, and then groggily recover.
It’s about the whole person, and the way that brain functions a little differently. Nothing’s changed from one moment to the next. A person’s mindset isn’t undergoing a radical Hulk-like transformation and then reverting back to the “good.”
It does mean that change and surprise will have a more dramatic effect, and be more difficult to deal with than otherwise. But take it as part of a personality, if you will. Possibly, the good things – like intelligence and honesty – wouldn’t be there without the Asperger’s Syndrome, either.
In fact, there are a number of positives that can go along with this.
One could blame the extraordinary visual gifts on Asperger’s Syndrome, as they seem to be so common (darn that AS!). Others could sigh in envy and blame Asperger’s Syndrome for the ability to recall minutiae. Or delve into a subject and really learn it, inside and out. Or for the creative, interesting mind that definitely thinks outside the box.
Being an Aspie can be a very cool thing.
But we don’t hear that often. Too many people like to blame the tantrums and focus on the downside.
I really prefer to think of it as a balance.
Everyone has strengths and weaknesses. Everyone. Just, with Asperger’s Syndrome, it’s a little easier to know where you stand. Those positives and negatives are a little more defined and across-the-board.
All right, I’m done. Equilibrium is restored. Thank you for your patience.
Hug your loved ones and appreciate them. And, next time you lose your temper or act oddly or have a fit of insecurity… remember that everyone has weaknesses.
And everyone has strengths.
Note: Thanks to my family, who have supported me, listened to me, and put up with this tirade more than once. Thanks also to the great people out there who really “get” it, and work hard to understand and help their loved ones.