"I can tell he's very high functioning."
Oh really? Just by seeing my child for all of two minutes jumping at an indoor trampoline park you are able to fully assess his cognitive ability and executive function skill set. Gee, why was I on that long ass waiting list so my Kiddo could see that child neurologist? I could have just brought him to Sky Zone and have an employee take a look at him when we were first on our autism journey. Would my insurance consider that "out of network" I wonder.
And when I start to explain to the employee just how subjective that is and how it's really not cool to just announce to a parent what YOU think where their child is at, I can see he's very confused.
"Well my wife works at the "Such and Such" private special needs school and she told me about these kids with autism and..."
That's great you talked to your wife but here's the thing dude. My husband is a lawyer. I talk to him about his job and ask questions all the time about legal stuff. I don't think that has given me enough knowledge to pass the Bar Exam. (Although I have never been known to pass a bar. HEE HOO!)
Please tell me, what is it suppose to look like? Or not look like? Would you ever think of going up to anyone else and say "Gee, your kid looks really low functioning." No, I'm thinking something might just stop you from doing that. No matter what you thought in your head. You might have enough of a social filter to NOT make that assumption.
Now take that feeling and run with it. Go with it my dear. Your preconceived notion of what autism is suppose to look like and it's functioning levels has got to go.
My Kiddo can read but he can't physically hold a pencil with enough of a grip to write his name. He can however type like a madman. He can open up the computer and pull up his ongoing Word document and get cracking. He can't however tie his shoes. He can change the ring tones on my phone. He can't dial a phone and talk on it without being prompted the whole time by an adult. He can listen to his music therapist play a note on the guitar and then walk over and find that note on the piano. He still needs help wiping his own ass. Hell, he still needs reminding to do it in the first place.
I guess this really got under my skin today. I'll be the first to admit to it. But for the love of my sanity, please stop thinking you or anyone else knows what autism and it's functioning levels looks like. You don't. I don't either. Yeah, can my "A" dar spot one? Sure. I tend to be able to find my tribe and you all do the Team Quirky flappy gang sign back. But functioning level? Come on! That's just rude.
Oh, your utter shock that I would also want my boy on the one big court that was open to the general masses was ridiculous. While I appreciate a special court just for Team Quirky, not all the members need or want it. I know what my boy could handle. That main court wasn't crowded and HELLO, all this work we have been doing is so he can try to do things like ANY OTHER KID. We've been coming here to the special needs jump time for a few months now. Just let him try! That's all I ask.
Jumping to conclusions. Well, we were at a trampoline park. Guess it's to be expected. ;-)