Autism and Communication

I am increasingly convinced that we need to come up with a different set of milestones for how less verbally-inclined people learn language. Over and over, I see studies where researchers and educators work very hard (and not always successfully) to get autistic kids to meet the various stages of typical language development... contrasted with… Continue reading Autism and Communication

Tangles is making communication progress!

Tangles and I had a wonderful moment of communication today. I was hanging out with her this morning while her mother came and went running errands. Tangles and I were both pretty tired, so we curled up together on the couch, just relaxing, doing her special fist-bump. She likes touch, so I started rubbing her… Continue reading Tangles is making communication progress!

Education, Control, and Abuse

My apologies for the length of this post. *** How do we teach children what they need to know in life? What do they need to know? They need, at some point, some measure of self-control: the ability to delay gratification, to think before acting, to modify aggressive instincts, to consider the well-being and desires… Continue reading Education, Control, and Abuse

Making Mistakes

(Sorry for the length of this post!) My first few times babysitting Tangles (10-yr-old girl with global developmental delay, possible autism, ataxic cerebral palsy, and seizures) made me realize just how new I am at all this. I made mistakes, lots of them. I learned a lot, too. The first hurdle was changing her diaper.… Continue reading Making Mistakes

Catching up about Tangles

I've learned so much since my first day with the 10-year-old girl I call Tangles, who has ataxic cerebral palsy and mixed partial seizures, and diagnoses of global developmental delay and profound intellectual disability. But I want to take things in order, here, as much as possible. *** The first time I met her, Tangles… Continue reading Catching up about Tangles

Things That Are Difficult to Say: More about my first impressions of Tangles

I wasn't, at first, going to write about this here. I was going to keep this blog for writing about Disability Rights and Disability Positivity and The Right Way To Do It. I wasn't going to talk about my mistakes, my second thoughts, my doubts... not in public, anyway. Not because I was ashamed, but… Continue reading Things That Are Difficult to Say: More about my first impressions of Tangles

Easier Said Than Done – Rules for Interacting with Children (and Adults!) with Disabilities

When I first met Tangles, as with every new disabled child I meet (really, I suppose it should be every child, period!), I made myself the following list of promises: 1) I will always speak to her as though she can understand me, no matter how little evidence I have to support that hypothesis. Additionally,… Continue reading Easier Said Than Done – Rules for Interacting with Children (and Adults!) with Disabilities

What kind of therapy does Tangles receive?

[EDITED] Last time I introduced you to a 10-year-old girl I call Tangles, who has ataxic cerebral palsy and mixed partial seizures, and diagnoses of global developmental delay and profound intellectual disability. Here's point one of my frustration about Tangle’s situation. I've described the kind of ABA therapy that Fishy [whose primary disability is also… Continue reading What kind of therapy does Tangles receive?

Introducing Tangles

I have a new client for whom I've been providing occasional respite care for the past month, and she has taught me so much that I don't even know how to start putting it all down. She is a 10 year old girl who lives with her mother and younger sister, age 6. She's brought… Continue reading Introducing Tangles