When I think back, it seems I have so much regret. I wonder if I can be okay with what is and stop the constant self judgement and belittlement? I certainly hope so.
I see that every parent is different. There are parents who are strict and controlling, believing firmly that what they are doing and how they are doing it is the right way. There are parents who question everything (me). All I’ve ever wanted for my son is to be happy.
I wonder all the time, should I push him harder? Should I demand that he come out of his room and join his father and I for meals (even though he won’t eat and would sulk the entire time). Should I hound him to get his homework done? Should I….should I….should I?
The truth is, I honestly don’t know most of the time. Sometimes I envy those parents who believe they have the answers because how freeing it must feel to really believe you are doing the right thing!
A typical day in my house is “do I wake my 17 year old son for school or do I let him learn the hard way?” I wake him. 15 minutes later, I know he’s still in bed and may have fallen back asleep. Again, “do I let him know that he has 15 minutes until it’s time to go?” I call up to him, “15 minutes.” At 7:30 I call up “time to go” at which point I start to hear scrambling because inevitably he can’t find something he’s looking for and/or he is just then getting out of bed and is now rushing to get ready.
He’s anxious now and upset. 15 minutes later, he comes downstairs looking completely frazzled, his hair a cute mess (seriously, I’ve never seen anyone wear messy hair as well as he does), papers everywhere and not one of them a school assignment, carrying at least 3 bags to hold everything he MUST take with him (which includes his drawing pad and at least 75-100 different pens and markers) and his surrendered look of “I have absolutely no idea if I have my school work, but oh well!” We barely make it to school on time.
The truth is, we have let him learn the hard way before and it’s just not important to him. He has his own agenda and when I make the terrible mistake of comparing him to neurotypicals, I get frustrated and feel like a failure of a parent. It’s in those quiet moments that I realize just how talented and passionate and smart he truly is and while I have accepted that his life will be “more”, I can’t seem to stop being scared for him.
I visit my brother who controls every minute of his kids day and can’t help but feel his constant judgement of my parenting skills (or lack of).
My son is turning 17 in a week and he is scared to grow up. My husband wants him to get a job this summer and the anticipation of that expectation is causing panic and shut down.
Parenting an Aspie has been the most rewarding, yet most challenging thing I have ever done. He has taught me so much more than I could hope to teach him. The one thing I hope he gets from my parenting is believing in himself and how his nonconformity is a gift not to be wasted.
Sorry if this post is all over the place. It’s late and I’m tired.