Book Review: Autism…What Does It Mean To Me?

I bought this book for my son, to use with his teacher, and my daughter was so impressed she insisted I buy her one too. So I did. Her teacher did not use it enough but at least we can give it to her next one. So, before we go Back to School and I have to give them to the school, I thought I’d share this book with you. 

First of all, it’s a Workbook, for the autistic person to fill out themselves, mostly by circling, highlighting or underlining what’s true for them. Chapters include an Intoduction, which includes pages such as ‘What is Autism?’, ‘Neurodiversity’, Person first and identity First Language. Other chapters are: The Sensory Experience, Ways of Thinking, Talent & Creative Expression, People, Understanding, Thoughts, Communication, School, Friends, Feeling Upset, and finally Happiness. As you can see, it’s pretty extensive!

Each chapter starts with worksheets on various sub themes related to the chapter. Then it goes onto a section entitled: Especially for Older Readers. This is more geared towards teenagers or even adukts and expands a bit more on the topics. Some of these expanded topics include ‘Internet Aquaintences’ ‘Depression’ and ‘Love’. So, good topics but I’d have liked some pages on Sex and Sexuality too. The final section of each chapter is: For Parents, Teachers and Therapists. It provides down to earth advice, both in how to get the most from this book but also in general. 

The entire book seems very respectful of autistics, which makes a refreshing change from other books also written by non-autistic writers. I really like it and would recommend it to autistics of all ages. And their parents, teachers and therapists, friends, family, grannies etc. I’ve enjoyed reading what my kids have filled in and written about their own experiences of being autistic. Especially as they have often written such different answers to the same questions. I’ve no doubt this book will continue to help them as they get older. 

Finally, I love the dedication, which reads:

“Dedicated to the autistic community, whose time has come.”

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