By Lily Eskelsen, Vice President of the National Education Association and Mom Congress Advisor
In just a little way, it touched my life. The little girl and the little boy were seated in the row in front of me. On an airplane, it's better to have kids in front of you, because behind you, they'll sometimes kick the seat. Dad was with them. Mom was across the aisle. Even as we were being seated, I could tell something was different. The little boy with the angel face was shouting and thrashing. Dad was calm. Mom was calm. The lady in the middle seat next to me said, in what I'm sure she thought was a discreet whisper, "People just spoil their children these days."
Mom jumped up to hand something to Dad, and that's when I saw her T-shirt. It read: My child has autism. Questions are welcome. Parenting advice is not.
Autism has likely touched your life in some way. Maybe it was the little girl who lived on your block or your son's classmate. Perhaps you are the parent of a child diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder or ASD.
The reality is that autism affects one in every 110 children and one in 70 boys.
April is Autism Awareness Month and I encourage you to educate yourself and others. Members of Mom Congress should also advocate for resources to help support children diagnosed with ASD.