Perspectives for Parents With Children Who Have Asperger’s Syndrome

There are three perspectives that parents with children who have Asperger’s syndrome can choose to adopt.

The first perspective is the one where the parents with children who have Asperger’s syndrome can choose to view Asperger’s syndrome as an ‘illness’ — for which special adaptations are necessary. Having opted for this perspective, the parents would then be obligated to bring the kids up in a special way, so that they can later on cope with the effects of the illness. This perspective is commonly adapted by parents who are brutally realistic — and especially in the severer cases where the effects of the Asperger’s syndrome are very obvious in the kids.

The second perspective is the one where the parents with children who have Asperger’s syndrome can choose to view Asperger’s syndrome as a ‘condition’: one in spite of which the kids can nonetheless have ‘normal’ lives. Having opted for this perspective, the parents would then have a chance to bring the kids up in a normal way, with a minimum number of special provisions.

The third perspective is the one where the parents with children who have Asperger’s syndrome can choose to view the whole thing as (a normal) part of their kids’ personalities: something for which no special adaptations are necessary. This is one of the perspectives that parents with ADHD kids often adapt, and that is increasingly popular with parents whose kids have Asperger’s syndrome as well. The parents who opt for this perspective are the ones with a broad view of human personality. These are folks who believe that there are huge differences in normal human personality – within which things like the effects associated with (mild) Asperger’s syndrome can be accommodated.

In the final analysis, what is important is to ensure that the kids with Asperger’s syndrome are brought up with love, and in a balanced manner, so that they can end up being well-adjusted adults. There is really no reason as to why a child with Asperger’s syndrome cannot be brought up to meet adult expectations. Expectations like those of being able to get a job, get married, join social groups and so on. True, he or she may not be able to handle something like, say, a front-line sales job: but surely, they can be able to handle a back office position at a company like, say, T-Mobile or UPS. If one such person opts to join UPS (thus becoming one of the Upsers), they may be able to get some sort of position in the UPS tracking section, or even in the parcel transportation departments. With proper upbringing, a person who was born with Asperger’s syndrome may be able to handle these sorts of life challenges later on in life, with the required level of resilience.

Setting Up a Support Group for People With Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)

One of the projects I am currently involved in is the one where I have been trying to set up a support group for people with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). This has, however, turned out to be one of the most challenging projects for me.

Firstly, I have come to realize that many of the people who suffer from Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) don’t actually realize that they have the disorder. Statistics from medical experts tell us that a significant percentage of the population suffers from the disorder. This may be true, and there is no reason to doubt it: but a question does come up as to what percentage of these people actually know that they have the disorder.

Secondly, I have come to realize that even the people who know that they suffer from Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) don’t always view it as something they need support for. Some view it as part of their personality, part of who they are — thus they don’t view it as an illness or difficulty for which they need ‘support’.

Thirdly, I have come to accept the fact that even when the people with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) agree to be part of a support group, they tend to struggle with participation in the group. They may, for instance, have difficulties getting time to attend the group’s meetings, due to their procrastination challenges. These are, after all, people who thrive on stimulation, and activities like attending meetings simply don’t provide the kind of stimulation these folks crave for. If they occasionally find the time to attend the group’s meetings, they will tend to come late. And then having come late for the meetings, they will tend to spend most of the time on their smart-phones, or they may spend most of the time daydreaming – meaning that in the end, they don’t gain much from attending the support group meetings.