'Tis the season, right?
As a family with different neurotypes, inclusion is not something we regularly experience. The term "inclusion" gets thrown around quite a bit, from workplaces to schools and government bodies, but there is sadly a vast gap between education, acceptance and the real world.
As a mother of three young non-verbal autistic boys aged seven, six and five, we have had more than our fair share of exclusion, ridicule and being overlooked. My boys have additional medical and social challenges which can further complicate perception of who they are.
Watch: Here's why we love Michael from Love on the Spectrum. Post continues below.
I am under no illusion they that should be invited to everything. Some events or activities would just not be suitable for them, however it would be nice if one - just one - parent would talk to me and send the boys an invitation to something. Anything!
I would love nothing more than if a parent made the effort to speak with me about how we could involve our boys in their child's birthday or Christmas party activities. I'm not afraid to have the conversations. I'd rather have them than watch my boys be excluded and miss out.
My boys are awesome! They are fun, cheeky, intelligent and get into all kinds of mischief like any other kids their age. I just want their circle to appreciate how much they could contribute to a fun day.