Autism Unexpected

Jean Winegardner never expected to parent an autistic child. She also never imagined the emotions, hardships and complete joy that would come with it.

Entries
  • Knowing that having a special needs brother is wonderful is one thing. Seeing his siblings struggle to help take care of him is another.

    Sibling Responsibility

    Knowing that having a special needs brother is wonderful is one thing. Seeing his siblings struggle to help take care of him is another. Published 9:15 p.m. January 23, 2010 - Comments

     
  • Our autism mom recalls the incident at a baseball game that caused her to formulate a stock answer to

    There's Nothing Wrong With Him

    Our autism mom recalls the incident at a baseball game that caused her to formulate a stock answer to "What's wrong with him?" Published 10:40 p.m. January 20, 2010 - Comments

     
  • Zakhquery Price is an 11-year-old with autism. And he's fighting felony assault charges after being restrained at his Arkansas school. What is wrong with this picture?

    Fifth Grade Felon?

    Zakhquery Price is an 11-year-old with autism. And he's fighting felony assault charges after being restrained at his Arkansas school. What is wrong with this picture? Published 11:19 p.m. January 11, 2010 - Comments

     
  • Homework is the worst hour of this mom's day. Make that two hours. Or three.

    Homework Hell

    Homework is the worst hour of this mom's day. Make that two hours. Or three. Published 7:31 p.m. January 6, 2010 - Comments

     
  • How do you let a stranger know that your child with autism isn't badly behaved—he has a disability?

    Invisible Disabilities and the Public

    How do you let a stranger know that your child with autism isn't badly behaved—he has a disability? Published 6:49 p.m. January 3, 2010 - Comments

     
  • Jean doesn't care if her autistic son flaps his hands, hops up and down eighty times a minute, or obsessively repeats the script to his favorite TV show over and over, but enough with the burping already.

    Repetition

    Jean doesn't care if her autistic son flaps his hands, hops up and down eighty times a minute, or obsessively repeats the script to his favorite TV show over and over, but enough with the burping already. Published 9:20 p.m. December 28, 2009 - Comments

     
  • A twitter message has our Autism Unexpected mom wondering why certain people consider autism to be a sickness.

    Autistic Doesn't Mean Unhealthy

    A twitter message has our Autism Unexpected mom wondering why certain people consider autism to be a sickness. Published 6:03 p.m. December 22, 2009 - Comments

     
  • A trip to a model train exhibit brings out Jack's autistic behaviors—for good and bad.

    An Autistic Outing

    A trip to a model train exhibit brings out Jack's autistic behaviors—for good and bad. Published 12:31 a.m. December 19, 2009 - Comments

     
  • For Jack and his mom, autism isn't an end, but a beginning.

    Devastating?

    For Jack and his mom, autism isn't an end, but a beginning. Published 9:16 p.m. December 15, 2009 - Comments

     
AUTHOR
Jean Winegardner

Jean Winegardner

When Jean had her first child in 2001, "autism" was about the scariest word she could think of. Six years later when her second child was diagnosed with PDD-NOS, a form of autism, she was just happy to have a ...

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When Jean had her first child in 2001, "autism" was about the scariest word she could think of. Six years later when her second child was diagnosed with PDD-NOS, a form of autism, she was just happy to have a word to help him get the services he needed. Her autism journey has been full of tears, laughter, love and at least one attorney.

Jean blogs about her life with her autistic son, Jack, on her blog, Stimeyland. Her two neurotypical children, Sam and Quinn (one older, one younger than Jack), make frequent appearances there as well. Also at Stimeyland? Jean's quirky sense of humor.

She also runs AutMont, an events calendar listing autism-related events in Montgomery County, Maryland.

Raising a child with special needs is hard for so many reasons, but after living with Jack, Jean wouldn't trade him for anything in the world. Come along with Jean as she experiences the joys that come with parenting a special kid.

You can email Jean anytime at stimeyland at gmail dot com or follow her on Twitter, where, as "Stimey," she offers her world view in snippets of 140 characters or less.

Contact Jean Winegardner

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