Susan's Blog

Saturday, October 8, 2011

The Saber Tooth Tiger Mom

I am not a Control Freak, any more than any other autism mom is; or perhaps what I should say is that Control Freak is the baseline for autism parent. We add on our levels from there. We start out in shock, as the diagnosis is acquired and sinks in. In fact, here is my rendition of The Levels of Autism Coping:

1) Suspicions But No Evidence (also comes in the form of Doctor Disbelief). This level may be substituted for Noticing Something is Wrong, but both often result in Doctor Disbelief.

2) Diagnosis Shock

3) Depression and Withdrawal

4) Anger and Renewal of Energy

5) Learning and Becoming an Expert

6) Partnering With Parents and Families Like Yours

7) Exhaustion and Withdrawal

8) Questioning of Priorities

9) Balance — Somehow.

10) Acceptance and Calm Advocacy

11) Teenager Shock

Repeat 2-10

12) Transition Jitters

13) Panicky, Active Learning About Adulthood

14) Confusion About Adulthood

Repeat 4-11

15) Coming Up With A Plan

16) Networking With Parents and Families Like Yours

17) Anxiety About 15 & 16

18) Trying it Anyway: Developing an Autism Adulthood Routine

19) Watching and Waiting

20) ?

In other words, whatever comes up, you go through it and you figure out the next steps. You control it as much as you can so that it doesn’t control you or your family. And by the way, the “It” I refer to is not your child, and it is not Autism.  The It that you must control is all the issues around autism, the baggage, the stuff that gets between you and your child.  Autism Mom Control Freaking is really just about trying to stay there with your child and take care of him. It’s just Motherhood on Steroids. It is Saber Tooth Tiger Momming.


Hey susan;

great blog! maybe you’d like to write something on the topic of forgiveness for a collection i am developing. here’s the intro for the collection.

let’s talk!


— added by jessica on Sunday, October 9, 2011 at 6:31 am

Well, I thought I was a bit further along on this journey, but it appears I’m only at #10. I think I’d best pace myself a bit more. Enjoyed this!

— added by kim mccafferty on Monday, October 10, 2011 at 1:22 pm

I seem to be at Step 13. Yikes! It spawned my blog about autism and raising my son.


— added by Round World on Wednesday, October 12, 2011 at 7:00 am