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  • Writer's pictureSarah Zucca MS, LPC, CADC

My Wish

After being inspired by an article, I posted a blog four years ago about the link between Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and raising a child with a disability. I have reflected upon the possible perception that raising an autistic child is the reason a parent may exhibit PTSD symptoms. Although, I feel a lot of the previous blog information is relevant; I also think it is important to clarify that it is not the autistic child who creates PTSD symptoms; but rather our systems and interactions with others on this journey.

There are often symptoms of hypervigilance, racing thoughts, emotional distress, and avoidance that come with raising a child with a disability, but I do not believe these would exist if we had systems and relational allies that understand and embrace neurodiversity. It is exhausting, extremely sad, angering, and confusing to navigate insurance, school, community, and interactions with family and friends who hold ableist biases. If we had programs in place to immediately support parents and children, provide them accurate information about neurodiversity, and links to community aides, I do not believe parents would struggle as much after receiving the initial diagnosis.

So, to expand on the original blog, I thought of all the things I wish I could change for AZ.

My Wishes for You…

I wish I could protect you from the ableist views of there being “a certain way to behave.”

I wish I could stop people from making inaccurate accusations against you or misinterpreting your behavior.

I wish I could protect you from peers being unkind.

I wish I could protect you from the way people may talk to you differently than they would another child your age.

I wish I could protect you from uneducated professionals who think “they know best” or hold the “we’ve always done it this way” mentality.

I wish I could get all professionals working with you to let you be the guide.

I wish I could change our school system, so they fully understood and embraced learning differences and trauma responses.

I wish I could spend more time being your parent and not be overwhelmed and exhausted from fighting multiple systems.

I wish you always remember the lyrics to your special song:

You’re beautiful, you’re beautiful

You are meant for so much more than all of this

You’re beautiful, you’re beautiful

You are treasured, you are sacred, you are His

You’re beautiful- Mercyme


While I cannot change all the challenges or difficult moments, I can promise you we will show up each day to help you navigate the hardships you will encounter and celebrate your victories. We will respect YOU and how your body and brain process the world. We will advocate for you while teaching you how to advocate for yourself. We will help you find your voice and will always value your opinion. We will presume competency and provide supports where needed. We will always grow with you and continue to discover each other. Lastly, we will make sure to find ways to laugh, have fun, and always support one another.

We love you, our beautiful child.

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