#childsafety | Why I Feel for All the Kids With Autism Who Miss Going to School

Child drawing with crayons.

I wish there was something I could do for all the students missing school right now.

Parents reach out to me asking for advice about their kid’s routines after they’ve been vastly changed with virtual learning. Comments I’ve received have included:

How they miss their friends at school.

How they miss their teachers and therapists.

How teletherapy has been a learning curve.

The list goes on and on.

Then my best friend, who is a first-grade teacher, telling me how much he misses his students too.

It is during times like these we remember how strong and beautiful the relationships that evolve in school can be. It’s much more than what is taught in a textbook.

A banner promoting The Mighty's new Navigating Coronavirus Together group on The Mighty mobile app. Click to join.
A banner promoting The Mighty’s new Navigating Coronavirus Together group on The Mighty mobile app. Click to join.

Growing up with autism, I had a love/hate relationship with school. Mainly it was because I went to five different schools from K-8 while my parents desperately tried to find a program that worked best for my unique learning style. Even now as an adult, I’ve thought about what it would be like if I was going through a pandemic while I was still in school. I’m not sure how I’d manage.

I’d be missing my first-grade special education teacher right now, who had the ability to meet me where I was in my own development. I’d be missing several of my teachers terribly now. I’m not saying that adults in our autism and disability community aren’t going through challenges as well. I’ve found my own unique challenges during this time as an autistic adult, with most of my speaking engagements being either canceled or postponed. I wonder how I’ll make a living for the time being.

Related:​ 6 Autistic Women and Non-Binary People to Follow on TikTok

For all those families whose kids are missing school right now, know you aren’t alone. Continue mental health-checkins and trying to the best of your abilities to establish a daily routine that works best for your child. I believe things will turn around soon!

For more on the coronavirus, check out the following stories from our autism community:

  • I’m Autistic and This CDC Equation Says My Life Is Less Valuable If I Get COVID-19

  • One Reason the COVID-19 Pandemic Might Be Extra Challenging for Autistic Adults

  • What to Do When Your Child on the Autism Spectrum’s Routine Is Disrupted by the Coronavirus

  • 5 Reasons to Try Telehealth Services for Your Autistic Child During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Read more stories like this on The Mighty:

Michigan Mom Creates Ambulance Sensory Kits for Autistic Kids

Joshua Collins Wants to Be the First Openly Autistic Member of Congress

To My Autistic Son: It Was Always You

New Apple TV+ Series ‘Little Voice’ Features Authentically Cast Autistic Character

Matthew Rushin’s Case Shows What Happens When Racism and Ableism Collide


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