Over the years I have had to answer a lot of questions about Geordie and his ‘condition’ (other people’s word, not mine). Most of these questions come from well-meaning souls; they are just trying to understand Geordie. I always do my best to answer the questions, to put people at ease and to help them understand — for Geordie’s sake.
Often, though, the questions are really hard to answer because they are, in essence, asking me to define Geordie, to pigeon-hole him and to label him. It is incredibly difficult, in a world that relies on labels and definitions, to make people understand that Geordie has just as many complex behaviours, feelings, likes, dislikes and emotions as any other ‘neurotypical’ child.
Yes, I apply a label when I tell people Geordie has Asperger’s Syndrome, but that is as far as my labelling goes because:
Geordie is Geordie.
Geordie is not Asperger’s.
My son has Asperger’s, but he is as unique as the next person. As he has grown, his personality traits, quirks, likes, dislikes and fears have all changed along with his physical attributes; just like everyone else.
Today, Sue Larkey shared the following script from the Facebook page of Asperger’s Syndrome Awareness. I wish I’d had this script years ago!
Ask me to tell you about my son — not a problem. But don’t ask me to classify him. And don’t expect that what I tell you today is going to apply to him for the rest of his life.