Autism is a developmental and neurological difference. The autistic person many communicate differently, not understand the subtleties of what is being communicated to them and struggle to understand the social norms and conventions that others seem to grasp without any problems. Other people to the autistic person, are confusing, unpredictable, don't say what they mean and can be very mean.
Children in schools pick on those who are different. Whether it's curly or ginger hair, the colour of their skin, their clothes, whether they wear glasses or an hearing aid….for some reason that seems built into us, kids pick on these things and can soon make another child's life hell. I wish the simple solution was to educate all children about autism and other disabilities, and then they would magically understand and be kind. Work we do with all children and adults to build better understanding and attitudes is vital. This blog, however, is about some work I've been doing with a group of autistic young people to explore their experiences and empower them by learning together what they can do.