To the Woman in the Library Who Scolded My Son With Autism

I may have not been nice when I told you not to scold my kid. You might think he’s a spoiled brat and trying to hog the train table your kid wants to play on. Your kid might think that, too.

It’s not that I want my son to take away your son’s train. The sight of them playing side by side is so beautiful to me.

You see, the last time we came to the library, we had to leave very quickly when another kid tried to play on the train table with my son. My son has autism. Playing with others is a work in progress among many other social things he’s learning.

He didn’t want the others to play the last time we came because they’d mess up whatever game he was playing. He couldn’t tell them this, so he laid down on the floor kicking and screaming. We had to drag him out with his sisters, who were unhappy to be leaving the library early. 

This time, however, he played next to so many kids before your son came to play. They were playing so wonderfully until my kiddo grabbed the train from yours. And that is wrong. And he does need to learn it’s wrong. But I also want to reinforce the good. He didn’t lie down and become inconsolable because another child sat next to him. He didn’t do anything that caused us to leave the library. He, as a lot of 6-year-olds do, took a toy away from another kid.

We have come so far from where he was. We can do so many more things that most parents take for granted. And yet, all you see is my kid taking the train.

I do apologize for him taking the train. And one day I know he will apologize to your kid as well. Because progress with this kid has been amazing, and he never gives up trying to make friends.

But next time, let me scold my kid.

Amanda Crews the-mighty-07132015-003

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