Because Asperger’s Disorder is a newly recognized disorder, your disclosure of your child’s Asperger’s Disorder may be the first time that adults in your child’s life have heard of it. Few teachers will have had much training and experience. The more the adults in your child’s life understand Asperger’s Disorder the better job they will do supporting your child. Without knowledge of Asperger’s Disorder, it is very easy for any adult to unknowingly misjudge your child as uncooperative and disrespectful.
Adults in your child’s life may suddenly feel nervous, believing they are not skilled enough to help your child. You can decrease their fears by telling them that one of the most important skills they can provide takes no actual training, only unconditional positive regard. An adult who is kind, patient, complimentary, and protective will go a long way in not only making your child feel worthwhile but also in modeling for others how to treat her with kindness. An adult who shows irritability and impatience and makes critical remarks to or about your child is likely to cause others to do the same.
Provide your child’s grandparents, aunts and uncles, neighbors, baby-sitters, coaches, teachers, and siblings with information about Asperger’s Disorder. Loan or buy them a copy of this book.