24 Times Doctor Who Has Helped Me Explain Autism

We have evolved into a “Whovian” family over the course of a few years –  my kids are ages 14, 12, 12 and 9. We have receptive / expressive language impairments (associated with an Autism diagnosis), so any subject that allows for reciprocal conversations is rejoiced! I also rejoice because I love sharing this interest with them and going to comic conventions to cater to my love of fandoms!

All memes were originally posted on Autism Odysseys on Facebook

Cosplay – Identical Twin ” Tenth Doctors”, Rose and a Weeping Angel
Cosplay – Cyberman, Dalek, The Silence and a Weeping Angel

1. Autism acceptance  – because square pegs aren’t meant to fit in a round hole.
2. The look  of a parent when their child isn’t the most disruptive one in the restaurant – With 4 kids, this doesn’t happen very often! 3. Reasons someone might lick random objects – you’re either the tenth doctor or you use it as a method to process an object as a whole. 4. For some people, small beautiful events are what life is all about . This is so true in my house – milestones that other parents take for granted are huge events (like learning to zip up their jacket). 5. The look on a parents face when they realize they forgot the iPad (or other electronic device & chargers). 6. If your child can give you precise directions to get someplace, but cannot think to look underneath a jacket for a missing shoe (based on a true story and executive functioning impairments!)7. When someone says, “why don’t you just get a babysitter?”. When my kids were toddlers, I didn’t even consider it due to their unpredictable nature. As they have gotten older, we have had some excellent sitters and….some that won’t came back….and others we don’t want to come back!8. Autism is not a faceless disease in need of a cure. It is a neurological difference that requires understanding and acceptance.9. If your child can sit through a 2-hour movie without moving a muscle – but is unable to sit still for 5 minutes at school. (Lack of competing sensory input!)10. When I  hear “are you sure? He doesn’t look autistic?”. Autism doesn’t have a look!11. Every behavior has a reason. Sometimes you have to look hard to find the reason, but it can help to understand it. This is an important reminder when it appears that someone is just “misbehaving”. 12. Don’t blink. Don’t turn your back. Don’t look away and don’t blink. Good luck”. (AKA helicopter parent). Some kids are prone to bolting and will just take off running without a sense of danger or destination. 13. People assume that autism is a strict progression of causes that effect; but actually from a multi-linear , multi-subjective viewpoint – it’s more like a ball of genetically environmentally neurodiversity acceptability stuff. It kind of summed it up for me!14. When you find the sippy cup/bottle that has been missing for weeks, do NOT open it! Just throw it away!

15. If it is in the IEP, the school must accommodate! accommodate! accommodate!16. Ear holding is a common method to block unwanted auditory input for those with sensory sensitivities. 17. April is what is known on earth as autism awareness month…it’s about accepting people’s differences. It’s ok to be different – otherwise life would be really boring. Everyday is autism awareness day in my house!18. In Doctor Who, there is a prophecy that states, “silence will fall when the question is asked”. There is no way silence would fall in an autism household after a question is asked. Ever. My house can be very loud!19. From a deleted scene: “what’s it like in your brain?” “A great big rollercoaster packed full of geniuses, all going wheeee!” I think that is pretty accurate!20. The look on your face when you see “school” on the caller ID 21. Courage isn’t a matter of not being frightened, you know. It’s being afraid and doing what you have to do anyway”.22. Autism means that sometimes I have a hard time tolerating noise – even though I make a lot of it. 22A. When your child comes back without their shoes for the third time and you are now late-try and remember that they aren’t doing it on purpose. Executive functioning impairments can affect how they plan and carry out tasks. Even ones they do everyday.  I frequently need this reminder!23. Your face when your child asks for the toy they have not coveted in weeks- and you haven’t the faintest idea where it might be. (Often happens just before bed.)

This final one – a quote from Christopher Eccleston, really sums it up for my family. My children are into what interests them, and I love that!

24. The doctors message seems to be: accept life in all its forms. He doesn’t react with horror when he sees a blue, three headed monster. He reacts with wonder.
All images from the show are the property of BBC and are presented under “fair use” for educational purposes. All words & other pictures are mine unless noted.


My identical twin sister and I with Billie Piper and David Tennant

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