Keep Your Hands Off My Autistic Toddler!
I took my daughter to her kindergarten orientation last Friday. We were so excited to get to meet her teacher, see her classroom and learn about her upcoming year. Until I wanted to smack her teacher!
I took my little one with us. My husband (who works night shift) had school and sleep, so the three of us made our way to her new class. My little one immediately went over to the kitchen play area and started playing. Not only is he turning three, but he has autism. I didn’t see the big deal, but when the teacher got upset and grabbed his arm to guide him away I quickly moved him away from the area.
It gets much worse.
When this happened, I told her he had Autism and that I would handle him and she got a slight attitude and walked away. So she grabs some tiny chairs for me, my son and my daughter to sit for this presentation at one of the tables. She again gets strong willed and bossy with him and I remind her he has Autism, and I am handling it.
Well,oOn the table there was this neckstrap for a badge or a key sitting right in front of him along with a little frog bucket. I figured since it was right there in front of him he could play with it. He was being quiet for the presentation and I was content. She then rushed over and tried to take the neckstrap from him. He clutched it and fell to the floor screaming “mine!”
I was in the process of filling out papers and didn’t see what was happening right away, but when I did I jumped up to tend to him. She was grabbing his arm as he was on the floor crying, just on the verge of a meltdown. She was physically pulling his hands away from his body trying to forcibly remove the item from his hands. I pushed her aside and (raising my voice of course!) said, “get off him, I told you he has Autism and I will handle him!”
Then she continues to reach over my shoulder, trying to remove this stupid neckstrap (with nothing even on it) from his little hands.
I pushed her hand away and said, “I will get it from him!”
During this time, my daughter’s class is full of new kindergarten kids and their parents, and I am kneeling on the floor completely humiliated by what has just happened. Don’t I look like a bitch?!?
I lifted him to his feet and he was visibly stressed and overwhelmed. I kindly asked him to please give the strap to her. This would have worked if she would have just walked up and asked him for it, rather than forcefully stating “Give that to me!” and trying to remove it from his hands.
She is a young teacher with a really big chip on her shoulders, and not only did I want to knock the chip off I wanted to knock her in the nose for putting HER hands on MY child.
I can feel my blood pressure rising just writing about it!
I quickly grabbed my things, told her that I was leaving because my son was clearly not doing well for the orientation and left.
I wish the schools would make sure the teachers have a full understanding of Autism. Awareness should be mandatory if for no other reason than this one. That woman is LUCKY I am a soft-hearted and kind woman, or she might have had a much bigger problem.
I am now making it my personal goal to make sure the principal of that school spreads Autism awareness to every teacher she has!
Autistic toddler photo available from Shutterstock
, B. (2012). Keep Your Hands Off My Autistic Toddler!. Psych Central. Retrieved on October 20, 2017, from https://blogs.psychcentral.com/bipolar-mom/2012/09/keep-your-hands-off-my-autistic-toddler/