This post is for the autism mom; the mom who has recently gotten her own diagnosis of autism.
The mom of a newly diagnosed autistic child; the mom who is going through the diagnosis process with her child.
The mom of an autistic child who is on the verge of adulthood.
What does it mean to be an autism mom?
When I call myself an autism mom, I say this because I am a mom who is also autistic. I speak to my own experience and to my own life. Because I was one of those undiagnosed autistic girls. One of those girls who grew up to be an autistic woman.
One of those girls who grew up to be an autistic mom.
I am one of those adults who was missed. There is still a long way to go when it comes to diagnosing adults. Especially for those of us who have flown under the radar for so long.
Autism, as the world has come to know, is a lifelong neurological difference. Or, at least, that’s one of the ways that I’ve come to view it. My brain is simply wired differently.
To some, it is a disorder.
To some, it is a disability.
Regardless of how you view it? Autism is usually associated with childhood. In fact, there are many times that we go into the debate of what to look for in autistic girls vs. autistic boys.
My autistic daughter was diagnosed as a toddler. And, I only wish I knew then what I knew now. If I’d known about the early signs of autism to look for. Not that I would ever want to change her but only because I could have put more supports in place.
She had plenty of support yes. And we were fortunate that she also had early intervention services.
I could have done more research.
I could have found more support.
But, I did what I could with what I had around me. And now, that’s put me in a better place to be able to help and support others.
In ways like creating printable resources and visual schedules. Or by sharing posts about how we’ve used them in our household.
I will say this though: it was and never has been about changing my daughter. It was and always will be about changing the world around her.
My Journey as an Autistic Mom
Some may choose to embrace the term autism mom for whatever reason or another. If they are a parent of an autistic child or if they themselves are also autistic.
Prior to my own autism diagnosis, I chose to call myself an autism mom — not fully knowing or realizing what it meant. That it was a term embraced by the neurodivergent community.
Now that I have had my own diagnosis, I choose to sometimes call myself an autism mom.
Because that’s part of my identity.
I am an autistic adult. An autistic mom with a neurodivergent family.
All of this came about in 2020 and began with my own self-diagnosis of ADHD.
Now, it’s lead to what I do on multiple fronts. Not just for my own family but for others. I have this blog, Kori at Home, to chronicle the parenting side of it. To share resources and to provide encouragement for families with autistic children.
I also have my coaching business where I support neurodivergent women like myself who have gone through their entire lives masking and trying to hide what makes them neurodivergent.
And, I have my podcast: Authentically Autistic and ADHD. That’s where I share a little bit of everything regarding my life.
Autism Mom or Autistic Mom
Now, I am not trying to start a debate or to create further divide within the community. Merely adding my point of view to the conversation.
I believe fully in open dialogue and in difference of opinion. I would only ask, however, that before embracing the term of autism mom — why is it that you are taking on this term?
Are you a mom of an autistic child? Are you autistic?
Whatever your reasons, that’s completely up to you.
I can tell you that in some circles, you will not find acceptance or approval.
In some circles, you will find an abundance of understanding and support.
And again, that choice is yours.
I know where I stand and I know what terms I choose to use. All I ask is for the same courtesy and respect.
If you are an autistic mom with autistic children, I would invite you to join me in my free community: Autistic Moms