About This Blog

Hello!  This blog has been developed and written by me as a space to reflect on and share my experiences of living with my son Dylan, who is autistic. I set the blog up in August 2013 while transition planning for Dylan who was moving from school to adult services. Despite years of planning my experience of this process was stressful and frustrating, culminating in me taking legal advice on Dylan’s behalf. As a result I became aware of legislation and processes which I decided to share with other carers through this blog.

I’m updating this page in July 2014. Although Dylan’s care is not completely settled, I am optimistic that we are nearing the end of what has been a difficult journey. The story of this battle to secure appropriate provision for Dylan over the last year is told in some of the posts on this blog. The blog also contains some more general pieces which reflect on the nature of  autism and on the challenges and celebrations of caring for someone who is autistic.

Keeping a blog such as this clearly raises ethical issues;  please take a look at the position statement I have developed and which is presented as a separate page. Autism affects individuals and families very differently and my posts can only offer accounts based on the particular experience of myself and my son. Furthermore, this experience is viewed through my lens, affected by my ‘positionality’. I would like to identify myself, here, as an ‘independent thinker’ about autism, rather than someone who aligns herself with a particular philosophical position.

Although I work in a university department which has an autism centre my blog is not connected to their work; these posts are made in my role as a parent rather than as an autism professional. My professional work as an educator does, however, affect my views on autism and the choices I make in relation to my son. These perspectives will sometimes be evident from my posts. Perhaps more importantly in terms of my identity, however, I am a poet. My orientation to Dylan and to autism is, I believe, as much a consequence of my poetic practice as any perspective I might have developed as an academic or mother. This creative and writerly approach to understanding and responding to autism  is hopefully evident in at least some of my posts.  I hope that you find Dylan’s story interesting and illuminating.

Thank you for reading!

The blog uses the ‘Adelle’ theme which I chose because, although the spelling is different, it’s the name of Dylan’s favourite singer :-)

16 thoughts on “About This Blog

  1. Ah, now see, like I said, I needed more input before I reacted to what you said. I thank you for sharing. I know it can be very hard and at other times very easy. The karmic god of ha ha on me just struck…my son just forgot how to heat soup and know the size of the pan and well at least now the counters are clean :)

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  3. Hi Liz,
    I just read your passages and saw your pictures over on Christy and Jennie’s Words site. Your words and photos filled my heart with joy-especially the story about Dylan and his perception of the leaves being hair. It made me cry!
    I have no first-hand experience with autism, so I look forward to reading more of your talent and learning as I go. I hope you don’t mind if I tag along.
    Michelle

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    • Hello Michelle – thank you for taking a look at my blog and for your lovely comments. It would be great to have you go on reading my posts – welcome! I’ve no way of knowing, of course, but I suspect that as many (maybe more) of the people who follow this blog don’t have direct experience of autism themselves. I like that :-) There are so many things which Dylan has done and shown me over the years which have moved me, but like you I find his description of the trees growing hair so beautiful. Every Spring that’s what I think when I look at the new leaves – not long now! Very glad to meet you through Christy and Jennie – any friend of Christy’s is friend of mine (I haven’t kept this blog for very long but I have been so touched by her courage, generosity and friendship). Look forward to finding out a little more about you too, as we go… Liz

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  7. Hello again, just poking around a little. The time stamp on your comment suggests you’re on the other side of the pond but the words you use, not so much. Either way, it’s always interesting to see how others live their lives and what some may not recognize as an adventure but is laid out before you so obviously to travel with a companion. I bet he sees many twists and turns in the road most including yourself would be completely oblivious of.

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    • Hi there – thank you for looking around :-) You’re so right about the twists and turns – although I try hard to understand Dylan’s world and see through his eyes I think I am definitely in iceberg territory – I am simply scratching at the surface. At the moment things are pretty tough for Dylan and I’m struggling to make sense of what’s going on enough to help him – so, yes, plenty of stuff I’m oblivious off. Very interesting that you pick that up about my language – yes I’m in England but years ago I lived briefly in the USA (Boston area) and a finely-tuned ear can hear the legacy :-)

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