What if he’s not?

July 5, 2009

I’ve realised something lately. I’ve been convincing myself that my austistic son is gifted. I repeatedly tell myself how smart and clever he is and perhaps he is but I think it’s a little more serious. I realise I’ve been compensating and hoping that although he’s not a normal kid, that he’s smarter, has exceptional abilities because it’s easier to accept having a son with special needs if he’s some way better in other ways. He’s 5 and I have this idea that he’s going to to be recommended to the school for gifted children when he’s 8. I take such pride in his achievements I know when I’m telling people for the first time that I’ve a son with autism which I usually qualify with he can read and he hasn’t started school yet, he can count to 100 etc. I remember saying to one of the many professionals that we attend that my son is very bright and he asked where it was documented in the reports as it would have been documented. And I just said ‘but’ and he looked at me as if to say we all think our kids are exceptional but there is no evidence. What if he isn’t? What if he’s just an austisic kid with average intelligence? It’s terrible but am I so shallow that I want him to compensate for some of his shortcomings? He’s adorable, usually everyone’s favourite, he’s funny and loving. Why can’t that be enough?

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