April Is Autism Acceptance Month

April Is Autism Acceptance Month

Every year, Autism Acceptance Month is celebrated is April, with World Autism Awareness Day falling on April 2. This is the 17th year this is officially recognized and celebrated.

Autism Spectrum Disorder, or ASD, has been studied and better understood in recent years. However, it’s not a perfect science. As it is a spectrum disorder, it can look different in every situation. There is also no “one size fits all” treatment.

So what does this month mean? It’s about celebrating and understanding differences.

For my family, it’s about acceptance and inclusion. It’s about working hand in hand with all of the people who help care for my child for his betterment. It’s about understanding that he is different, but he should fit right in with his peers. It’s about bringing a positive name to something that has been hidden in the shadows and looked down upon for so many years.

April is about shining a spotlight on treatments such as Applied Behavioral Analysis, or ABA, therapy. ABA got a bad rap years ago for being the “treatment for the bad kids” as it was told to me. However, ABA is the single most effective treatment for autism there is. They teach everything from daily living to social skills needed to hold a job.  They teach children how to communicate, how to dress themselves, and how to socialize. They teach boundaries. They teach children how to transition without meltdowns. They teach children that their diagnosis is not the end of the world.

Autism Acceptance Month highlights the strides school systems across the country are making with autistic students.

April Is Autism Acceptance MonthIt isn’t just special education teachers that are being trained how to work with autistic students. Teachers across the board are learning awareness, acceptance, and strategies to help these students learn and thrive. Teachers throughout schools are learning to spot when students are beginning to melt down and how to assist them.

Autism Awareness is about seeing the differences and accepting autistic people for who they are- people. It’s about understanding their needs and abilities. It’s about celebrating those differences. It’s about supporting these people to one end- inclusion.

On Tuesday, April 2nd, I am asking you to wear BLUE for World Autism Awareness Day.

Wear it for someone you know who is autistic. Wear it for the 1 in 36 who have been diagnosed and the many more that go undiagnosed. If nothing else, wear it for my son. He, along with every other autistic human, deserve the awareness and acceptance that April brings to ASD.