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
  • Parenting a child with autism can be terribly isolating. Why not reach out into the world of social media?

    Social media and autism: A life line

    Parenting a child with autism can be terribly isolating. Why not reach out into the world of social media? Published 3:53 p.m. May 30, 2010 - Comments

     
  • ...you've met one child with autism. Here is a quick tour of the autism spectrum via one child.

    If you've met one child with autism...

    ...you've met one child with autism. Here is a quick tour of the autism spectrum via one child. Published 6:29 p.m. May 16, 2010 - Comments

     
  • All you autism moms work so hard for your kids. I'm here today to thank you.

    Happy Mother's Day to all the autism moms

    All you autism moms work so hard for your kids. I'm here today to thank you. Published 11:52 p.m. May 8, 2010 - Comments

     
  • Frontline's piece on vaccines has instigated a swirl of debate. Why can't we move on?

    The vaccine war makes me tired

    Frontline's piece on vaccines has instigated a swirl of debate. Why can't we move on? Published 2:21 p.m. May 2, 2010 - Comments

     
  • The autism path isn't an easy one, but some days the view is incredible.

    The autism path

    The autism path isn't an easy one, but some days the view is incredible. Published 10:17 p.m. April 27, 2010 - Comments

     
  • One of the best gifts my special needs child has given me is the ability to take joy in the small things.

    Noticing the bright spots

    One of the best gifts my special needs child has given me is the ability to take joy in the small things. Published 11:34 p.m. April 20, 2010 - Comments

     
  • IEP meetings are one of the hardest parts of being a special needs parent. Here are some ways to prepare for yours.

    How to prepare for an IEP meeting

    IEP meetings are one of the hardest parts of being a special needs parent. Here are some ways to prepare for yours. Published 11:05 p.m. April 14, 2010 - Comments

     
  • It's Autism Awareness Month. But let's not just be aware, let's accept and embrace as well.

    Let's take some steps in autism acceptance

    It's Autism Awareness Month. But let's not just be aware, let's accept and embrace as well. Published 11:08 p.m. April 6, 2010 - Comments

     
  • They're good kids and they try hard. That's why it's so hard when uninformed people think they're brats.

    When autistic behavior is misunderstood

    They're good kids and they try hard. That's why it's so hard when uninformed people think they're brats. Published 5:34 p.m. March 28, 2010 - Comments

     
  • Explaining autism to young children is a challenge. This is the clearest explanation I've ever heard. Oddly, it involves toasters and hair dryers.

    How can I explain autism to young children?

    Explaining autism to young children is a challenge. This is the clearest explanation I've ever heard. Oddly, it involves toasters and hair dryers. Published 11:20 p.m. March 25, 2010 - 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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