In recognition of #AutismAcceptanceMonth, each Friday we will post a perspective from someone in the autism community in an effort to share their insights about autism. Though you may agree or disagree with their feelings, please remember this is meant to share perspectives and your thoughts and perspectives may differ.
First up is Julie Tracy, co-founder of Urban Autism Solutions and mom to John, 29, who has autism and will be sharing his thoughts later this month.
IMAGE: Julie Tracy
Here's what Julie has to say:
What I want people to know is that the word 'autism' itself doesn't really describe the myriad of different learners and neurotypes who may be autistic or have autism. There are so many different meanings the word can have depending on the person using it as well as lived experience, either individually or within a family.
It’s best not to make any assumptions but instead get to know someone with autism just as you’d become acquainted with any new friend or co-worker. In the 10 years since Urban Autism Solutions was founded, the world has completely changed and so many more possibilities now exist for children, young adults and people with autism across the lifespan.
Be kind. Be patient. And if you see someone struggling, the best thing may be to ask that person how you can help. Presume competence.