My son is about to become a teenager next week and like any mother I’m filled with excitement and full of ideas for what his birthday should be like. There’s just one small catch however … Jack has autism and doesn’t even know it’s his birthday next week.

This is our story …..

I can remember when my 13th birthday was coming up. I can remember talking my parents into having a party. Getting all excited about picking a party outfit, what shoes to wear. Definitely not wearing hot pants and trainers however much me and my friends wanted to. No. We were going to get dressed up. My friends were coming… the boy I liked was invited and he was coming too. My 13th birthday party was in a nightclub, well an unders night out. Which meant crisps, sweeties and irn bru. It was a brilliant night. Cheesy dance music, friends and dancing. I got some amazing presents too…. I have some brilliant memories.

My first born is about to turn 13 next month, he’ll officially be a teenager. He should be about to do exams and make friends for life. However my son has autism, adhd and global development delay. He hates loud noises, socialising and surprises. Well unless it’s on his terms. I’m about to plan his 13th birthday arrangements and I’m struggling. I don’t want to upset or stress him out on his Birthday.

You see autism is a struggle at times. It’s completely different worlds that collide at certain points. At the moment there is plenty of autism awareness going on but I don’t think there is much autism understanding. My son Jack swears a lot, he hits and would think nothing of just running away from me. Whether that would be onto a busy road or towards any other danger no matter how much we try to teach him about road safety and stranger danger amongst other things.

Looking forward to Jack’s 13th birthday and how differently things are for both of us. Jacks perfect birthday would be sitting on his new tablet that we have got him and ignoring the world go by. Jack has no idea it’s his Birthday on the 4th of May and I was worried about people coming to mine.Jack’s biggest worry is interaction with other children and adults. So much so that if he thought he was having a party he would be anxious about it until the time came which in turn affects his behaviour mood and every single person around him.


2 thoughts on “13

  1. Transitions are hard…for Our Kids AND for us too. And milestones for Our Kids also bring a bit of the bittersweet with them. We think about our own significant birthdays such as becoming a teenager at 13 or being old enough for a driver’s license (here in the States) at 16 or graduating from high school and being accepted into college at 18 and Our Kids don’t care about any of that. Tough to acknowledge but true.

    But just when we think we have a handle on everything and we’re fine with our son’s autism ….BAM…..life throws another Milestone in our way and we melt into a puddle. Wish I could tell you it gets easier…it doesn’t. At least you’ll be prepared for the next one. Cry (when you get a chance) and do something for Jack HE will like. Because it’s his birthday, whether he knows it or not.

    Autism awareness is fine and it’s great folks are making it a *thing* but autism acceptance (and understanding) would be even better.


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