Asperger’s 101 is a series to dispel misconceptions about Asperger’s and Autism in general. I write this post with the help of my 7 year old son, Brady. I could not express these opinions without his input or approval. This is a record of our experience.
Part of an ordinary childhood experience is wanting to fit in. It is hard to fit in when you are 7 and you have Asperger’s. Hard but not impossible.
We looked online until we found other boys that love science and math, and also happen to be autistic.
Jake Barnett is in his early teens. Jake is one of the first kids that Brady found that he can relate to — here is a boy that openly says “I”m autistic” and “I’m happy”.
Dr. Mad Science is another role model for Brady. His name is Jordan. He is a normal kid, surrounded by family and friends and treated with acceptance. He is autistic and he is happy.
These boys inspired Brady to lead science projects for his class at school. So far he has demonstrated two of Dr. Mad Science experiments (Lava Lamp and Milk Fireworks) for his 2nd grade class (another great science resource for us is Steve Spangler). The experiences helped Brady connect with the kids in his class.
But most importantly, these boys keep Brady from feeling alone. He can relate to them and since he found out about them, he is a happier kid. This is not something I can do for him, this is something his community does for him. Thank you to all autistic kiddos who make and share videos online, I am so grateful to you.
Mom note: My awareness of the importance of autistic role models for children with autism is courtesy of Karla of Karla’s ASD page. I read Karla’s page every day. She is an immensely valuable resource. If you have time to read/follow her on Facebook or online, I think you will enjoy her too.