"How will I know when it's time to tell my children about their Asperger's/Autism diagnoses?"
"What should I say if my child asks me a question about autism?"
"Won't it just hurt his self-esteem to know a diagnosis? How does having a label help?"
"What's the best way to tell my children about their diagnoses? What shouldn't I do?"
Parents call AANE with these and similar questions everyday. They want to help their children understand themselves--understand how their diagnoses may affect them--but they also worry about what happens next. I posed the question of why parents should tell their children about an Asperger's diagnosis to my 18-year-old son, Noah, who was diagnosed with Asperger's when he was 3 years old. With the help of our dog, Lavender, this is what he had to say…
By Brenda Dater
Brenda Dater is the author of Parenting without Panic: A Pocket Support Group for Parents of Children and Teens on the Autism Spectrum (Asperger's Syndrome). Brenda is also the Director of Child and Teen Services at AANE.