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To the Friends, Family and Classmates Who Don't Invite My Child With Autism

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It’s a scenario I hear time and time again: our autistic kids getting left out from birthday parties.

Whether it be from classmates, friends or family. It stings.

Some of our kids may not care. They don’t like to be around a bunch of loud people. But asking is still the right thing to do. Don’t assume they, or we, won’t want to take part. Include us! Let us make that decision for ourselves.

If we decline, understand. It’s not you. We may be having a rough day. Our kids may need a break from sensory stimulation. We may have therapy engagements. There could be a million reason we can’t come, but you won’t know unless you invite us.

Recently, it happened to my son. He doesn’t know yet. I assure you when he does, he will be hurt. He’s sensitive. He constantly worries people don’t like him or think he’s weird.

I hid the pictures of this party from my Facebook timeline when I let him play a pool game on my account. He also has a generic account, that his father and I control, to play games. I logged into that and hid the pictures from that timeline too.

It’s just a matter of when his friend says something about the party. He will know. He will know he wasn’t asked. He will then ask us why.

How do we answer that?

Maybe it was an oversight? It happens. Or maybe it wasn’t. We’ll never know because I won’t ask. I don’t like confrontation like that.

All I know is, it hurt. When those pictures of his friend and the other kids having fun came through my feed, my heart sank.

It’s hard when your kid isn’t included. We know how amazing our children are. Sadly, others can’t see that. Judgment clouds their minds. They assume our children are bad or a problem or a handful.

Get to know them. I promise you won’t be disappointed.

You will see life from a perspective you never expected. You may even learn a few things. Like tolerance, acceptance and perseverance.

Our kids deserve that and more.

So please, from one mother to another, don’t forget us! We matter!

This post appeared as a guest blog on Kelly’s Thoughts on Things.

Originally published: August 7, 2015
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