By Dan Burns
I was reading on the upstairs balcony when the cop car whipped around the corner and into my parking lot. About that time I thought I heard my son Ben's gleeful, autistic laugh behind me. But that was impossible, because I was sure that Ben was in his room reading Dr. Seuss books. Another laugh - a shriek, really. As the cop got out of the cruiser, my neighbor came trotting up, arms windmilling. "Hey, there's a naked man on your roof." I looked up and yep, there stood 22-year-old Ben in all his shameless glory, tossing pecans to the squirrels.
Last week, a Dallas mom responded to my blog, commenting on her son with autism spectrum disorder (ASD): "He's only 13 but he's taller than I am now. That scares me because looking like an adult and behaving inappropriately can get him into so much more trouble now."
Yeah, tell me about it. I hustled Ben back through the open window. I heard the cruiser door slam as the cop walked toward us... Read the full post and please comment with your own experiences at Dallas Morning News MomsBlog
Dan E. Burns, Ph.D., former filmmaker, software developer, and businessman, taught Communication courses at Southern Methodist University, the University of Texas at Arlington, and the University of Phoenix. In 1990 his third child, Benjamin, was diagnosed with autism. Burns' memoir, Saving Ben: A Father's Story of Autism (www.SavingBenBook.com) published by UNT Press, tells of a three-year-old child's regression as an infant into autism and Burns' struggle with the medical establishment, the school system, and his family in the battle for Ben's health as a father who never gives up. Planning for the time when he and Ben's mom pass on, Dr. Burns is developing the Autism Trust of Texas, modeled on The Autism Trust (U.K.) and focused on the creation of new communities to offer a future for the increasing number of children with autism. They will provide a home base for life where adults with autism can work, live and improve their skills and talents in a creative and supportive environment.
Sunday, July 18, 2010
By Dan Burns