Living with Autism can mean that you are living with the inability to control what you think or say, or even ‘do’ at various times. As a carer and parent of someone with Autism can test your patience and resolve to the limit, and one of the most difficult things to do, is not to take it personally.
Today we started our day in great spirits, had a plan, well understood for what we are going to do and with the usual checking and rechecking that has become the norm, we were having a great day. Then I made the mistake. I changed a small element of that plan. The result I should have known. An explosion of confusion, anxiety and anger. Verbally savaging myself and all who tried to help calm the situation. It wasn’t his fault, it wasn’t my fault, it was just one of those things that so innocently happened that I hadn’t thought through well enough to position it in such a way that it would be understood. A further consequence of my lack of thought, was a major seizure and blinding migraine, all as a result of intense anxiety – we were witnessing a major meltdown.
Unconditional love is not judging, not taking offense, continuing to offer the appropriate support to protect and change the environment to ease these extreme emotions and fear, to continue to love, no matter what is said, what you are called, what is done. I stand by him like a rock. He is my son.
An important understanding is that it will pass. Every time. it will pass, and usually he will be remorseful and even more vulnerable when it does. This is the point that we hug each other and talk calmly about what caused the concern, to reassure him that it was not his fault – which is his usual feeling – and that we learn that changing plans, no matter how small, can not yet be done in his current developmental place.