Is it autistic behavior? Or is it all human behavior?
Think about this, some people with autism often flap, jump, sway or maybe loud. If you broaden your lens at a baseball game, you will notice similar behaviors in all humans on and off the field. What happens when someone hits a homerun? The fans and the players all scream and jump up and down. Sometimes, players sway back and forth on the field for concentration on the batter, just as autistics do. Me personally, when I hold a baby, I immediately start swaying back and forth, its calming for me, predictable and I feel in control. Same goes for autistics.
People with autism may do these behaviors more often than some people but all humans have similar behaviors.
Instead of treating a person with autism to be solved, what if we treat this person to be understood?
Recently I dove into a great read, Uniquely Human by Barry M.Prizant, PHD and he shares about a British Autistic named Rose, can’t remember her last name but her Mantra is, “If I do something you don’t understand, keep asking me Why? Why? Why?
I loved this thinking.
If we start to embrace our differences and share the “why” behind some of our behaviors, wouldn’t we have a more understanding and acceptance in our world?
When you observe a child that may be different or behave in a way that is confusing, ask them or their parent why.
For instance, Cody truly enjoys the outdoors. And especially collecting twigs and sliding them down one at time in a very structured way on his playground slide. He often looks at them separately and will yell out what letter each twig looks like. Very creative on his part! If you’re not paying attention he may squeal loudly versus using words. Some suddenly think he’s misbehaving or that he’s anxious. When in fact he is very happy and excited and just can’t find the choice of words to use to express his excitement. Of course we quickly give him some words to use instead but until he learns, feel free to tap into me and ask me why. I would love to share with you Cody‘s human behaviors.
We don’t need to change or fix Cody. We need to understand him.