Why Blog?

16 March 2018

Dear Friend,

Yesterday you asked me why I blog.

I could hear the underlying mockery in your voice. The blogging world has been getting quite a lot of negative press lately. Whilst being a blogger isn't really something I shout too loudly about, I am proud of what I have achieved through this blog.

This month I heard another stereotype about autism, I read another news story about an autistic man being mishandled by police, I saw a report about a boy being removed from a flight, I read another blog post about a child being 'left out' of birthday celebrations...

It makes me sad...

Autism has become a hot topic over the last few years, seemingly never out of the news.

We have awareness months, Autism days, TV dramas with autism taking the lead, documentaries, benefits, concerts, even an Autism's got talent contest...

In 2015 the National Autistic Society carried out a YouGov poll and found that more than 99.5% of people in the UK had heard of autism.
A brilliant achievement!

It seems like everyone has heard of autism.

BUT...  In the same YouGov poll just 16% of autistic people and their families said that the public had a meaningful understanding of autism.

There is a massive contrast between awareness and understanding that shows us we still have a way to go in promoting acceptance.

I have realised that I can not assume that when people hear the word Autism they actually understand what it means...
  • Autism is very complex to describe (something I have also posted about here) and something my son explained much better than I ever could
  • Stereotypes are out there
  • How can anyone really know autism unless they have firsthand experience with it?
  • Autism is such a broad Spectrum that everyone's experiences are different
  • Autistic people are still expected to fit into our world or hide away from it

Yesterday you asked me why I blog.

I blog to challenge what people think they know about autism!

I blog because my voice is important and our story is unique!

I blog because Awareness without Understanding means that we remain an autism unfriendly world.

Thank you to all of you who have read, commented on and shared any of my Autism posts, you are helping to get the message out there. We really appreciate all of your support. 

A glimpse into autism is a series of short letters that explore the impact autism has on our family on a day to day basis. Disclaimer:  this is our experience not all autistic people are the same. 

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Photography @My_Dutch_Angle

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