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The idea is simple. Let’s teach each other about each other. About our health and wellbeing. And about our illnesses. Furthermore, let's dispense this knowledge to our surroundings. Because an illness changes with perception, and this perception can make all the difference in the way we live.

Student run. For the student in each of us.

Stories

Amy

Neha Kinariwalla

 Amy chose not to submit a photo. We respect the rights of patients to preserve their privacy.

Amy chose not to submit a photo. We respect the rights of patients to preserve their privacy.

I am the mother of a 12 year old boy with PDD. All I can say after 7 years of receiving his diagnosis (after much parent advocacy) is that I'm tired. I'm tired of hearing "what's wrong with him?", "I thought autistic children didn't talk", "he seems normal to me", "he should be able to do that at his age", "what do you want me to do, prescribe medicine?", "that's not covered by your health plan". There is no manual with steps to follow. Many pediatricians and school psychologists are not actually that well-versed in autism spectrum disorders. I guess most patients expect that when they receive a diagnosis, they get an opinion about a treatment plan. What we get with ASD patients is "well you can try this" and "this works for some kids". There's so much more work to be done. However, I don't mean to complain. Living with a child on the autism spectrum, is a life enriching experience. I might be trudging through my daily routines and my son says something that he's observed that I never even contemplated. He's a little philosopher. If only he would talk to people other than myself. He notices details and questions life's "understood social rules" in a way that makes me think why we do the things the way we do sometimes. He's curious and creative, and likes to share his thoughts - when he's comfortable enough to do so. He often expresses his wishes to make friends, yet when the opportunity arises, he turns the other way or says nothing. I could say so much more, but I need to help with homework and facilitate his play time. If there's one thing I'd like people to know it's that when you meet a child on the autism spectrum, don't ask what their difficulties are, ask what their strengths and interests are. You might be surprised