I will use my fav Harry P to illustrate where I am going with this:
that is us.
It is, really. What we do with the boy. We don't have to do as much as we did but we still have to focus and make sure he is staying on target. He works harder than most kids in college because he has to. His efforts are really amazing. He still has semi-colon issues but he does know what he is writing about. Pulling it out of him is a challenge. We are regularly getting him to talk and tell us what he thinks and why.
I have heard we make it look easy. Right and Voldemort like to play with puppies. We keep the boy organized. Once again my dining room has turned into the biggest study cubicle on the planet ever. Text book, notes, story books, notes, ideas, notes, notebooks, papers......and maybe if I am lucky we will be able to eat dinner there again sometime soon.
We are exhausted. the cute one and I are almost too pooped to pop.
The level of focus to keep the boy on track, in school and graduating is tremendous. He will graduate soon and we are done. If he decides to finish and get a BA or Masters he will have the tools to do the work on his own. He is learning the tools at home. Not from school- the friends he used to have did not teach him that politics is important and he needs to watch to see what is happening. We had high hopes when he left therapeutic day school. we did, we wanted to believe that he would have been supported and that he would be allowed to expand and become more.
He did do more. He did 7 years of a high contact sport. He wasn't the best at it and coach put up with him - barely. Once the coach mentioned that we were making him "babysit" our son. It was highly offensive but at least I knew where he was coming from and frankly I appreciated his honesty. I did tell him we were trying our best to take his sport seriously and we had hoped for a lot more than what the boy had learned. After all that, the boy learned to work hard. He still does work hard. We expect a lot from him and we want him to do the work and do it right the first time. Later I heard that he was asked to work out with some of the kids on the team and the boy asked them, "Why would you want me to? You didn't want me around when I was here? Why would you want me around now?" All I could think when I heard that was, "Well, I guess they thought he didn't know." He knew; and whether anyone likes it or not - they all know who accepts them and who doesn't.
As a family what we have found is that intolerance is not only racially motivated. Intolerance is freely given to the disabled as well; usually the disabled won't call anyone out on it though. Just so you know, it isn't because the disabled don't notice; they do. Mostly they won't call anyone out on it because they either can't. don't want to bother or don't want to hurt any ones feelings. And yes, as an example, usually the boy's feelings will come in second or third for himself.
Right now the boy is adjusting to a new period in his life. He has stopped stressing so much - the 5 classes last semester almost did him in although he did get 5 "A's" (we celebrated for several weeks as did he). He will be moving on to the grown up part- and honestly, maybe I should push him harder to get there but you know what? Hes in for a tough semester with a very involved class and I am thinking it will be about all he can handle. I know he can do this and get through school and be done. He may continue with online only classes (more relaxing but harder work) or not.
Either way, he will be able to take care of himself, and not live off of other people. Oddly enough, more recently a friend of his asked us about letting the boy move into an apartment with several like themselves (all Aspies) I said, "No. Not right now. I am saying No for now but it in a permanent No." You would have thought that no one ever said "No" before. I guess hearing a "No" for the first time is hard- the boy is used to it. I wasn't called, "My-no" when he was a toddler for a reason. I said, "No" a lot. right now I say "No" to any number of things. I also found out that doing so has not hurt the boy but in actuality helped him accept the "No's" better than most.
At that he isn't perfect, but then who is? He is a smart kid who I want to believe will do well and yes, will be able to learn math and help others in his career. He will be able to give back, in his own way and with his own abilities. All I can hope for is those wise enough to accept him, and tolerant enough to give him a chance. If Stevie Wonder can do anything (I loved the Braille thing at the Grammy's- marvelous)
Powerful shit Sherlock - think about it- and he doesn't mean throwing them all in a classroom and dumbing it down to the lowest common denominator. He means giving every single person a chance.
I wonder how many gens would- or would even think of being friends with someone like the boy- I know of only 1 who has been brave enough to come to the house. She has found we are tough, but we have one thing most other places don't - unconditional love. We don't care what she does or what's going on- we are her other family and we accept it all - warts and all. Just like our son needs/ desires acceptance, warts and all.