King of the house: happy Father’s Day!

It’s Father’s Day this weekend, and to mark the occasion I’m updating you on a father whose son was recently diagnosed with autism. You might remember my post about children’s book author Jim C. Hines — he is a wordsmith, but in his most recent autism-related post, he admits his son’s diagnosis has left him struggling with one particular word.

One thing I’ve noticed about myself: I can say Jackson is on the Autistic Spectrum. I can say he has Aspergers Syndrome. But I have a really hard time saying he has autism. My brain just rebels at that point.

Jim’s honesty about this could give license for the rest of us to talk about our own feelings without worrying we are wrong to feel the way we do, or that we are in denial, we are bad parents. Quite the contrary.

We’re still looking into options and trying to figure out what he actually needs. It’s not about “Autistic children need _______.” It’s about “Jackson, who happens to be ASD, needs _______.”

One of those needs is to improve his hand-eye coordination and fine motor skills. Building with LEGOs seems like one way to work on that. I’ve also started him on regular LEGO Star Wars video gaming therapy. Now if I could only get him to stop blowing me up …

Jim ends his post with one last story about Jackson, who he describes as very rule-oriented:

My wife was teaching him to play checkers. He did quite well … and then he got his first king, at which point he announced, “but kings make their own rules!”

Indeed. Sometimes, the blogosphere can seem pretty Mom-heavy … so let’s shout out a happy Father’s Day to all those cool dads out there … it’s your day!


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