Tough Conversations – How do you explain to your child they have #Autism?

I don’t think that I’ve ever really had to seriously broach this subject with my kids…..yet.. They are all familiar with the word Autism but I don’t know that they understand what it is and that it’s a part of who they are….

This is actually one of those more difficult discussions you may have to have with your son or daughter. 

There’s absolutely nothing wrong with being Autistic, it’s just challenging to help a child understand what it is and what it means for them. 


I think it would be really helpful if we could discuss what our experience has been with talking to our children about their diagnosis.  This can be difficult to explain and I think it’s important to really reinforce the fact that Autism doesn’t make them a freak.

I’ve heard some kids say that they feel like a freak because they have Autism and that’s so heartbreaking because it couldn’t be farther from the truth. 

With that being said, I’m also a firm believer in if it ain’t broke don’t fix it.

Is it even necessary to have this conversation with our kids on the spectrum? If they don’t ask about it, why even bring it up?


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About Rob Gorski

Father to 3 with Autism and husband to my best friend. Oh...and creator fo this blog. :-)


  • Heather D Colvin says:

    I did it with a book. It worked quite well.

  • Shondolyn Gibson says:

    Just tell them honestly, but it doesn’t have to be negative. Many autistic people are very intelligent and not so bad people.

  • Donna Golding says:

    With a book. We read the story and she identified with the character. She pointed out that the boy was different the same way she is. She knew she was different and was so happy she could put a name and reason to it!

  • Michele Nichols Sulter says:

    they know… it has never been a secret… they know the dance to a different beat.

  • Wendy Picarelli says:

    My son knows. Never made it a secret or something he should be ashamed of. I’ve told him he is different, not less, not bad, just different.

  • biggreenpen says:

    I think it depends on a lot — your particular child, your family — many things. BUT since they are likely going to hear the word “autism” used in their presence (at school, in the general media, etc.) it seems like it gives you more control over the message to be the one to discuss it with them. Take care, all of you!

  • Kimberly Ma'maw Smith-Leonard Schmalenberger says:

    Yes, with our eldest (now adult) son around age 13 when he realized he was not fitting in. Very difficult to do… but they need the information so they can reconciliate why/how they are not like most others and learn to accept themselves for the beautiful people they are. My 14 yr old now (not dx w/ Autism) came to me last week saying he thinks he does have it. Very interesting self diagnosis. Time to reach out to our neurologist for a consult.

  • avazapp says:

    AspieWriter It’s def a tough convo to have. Do read trydefyinggrav’s blog – she told her son he had a gift calld autism.Very touching blog

  • AbigailCellars says:

    AspieWriter AvidAutismAdvoc Lost_and_Tired I just told him one day. Him: is that why I like to collect junk mail? Me: yup. Him: oh. Ok.

  • trydefyinggrav says:

    avazapp AspieWriter thank you for sharing ❤

  • Kimmie K says:

    What book did you read to them!!??

  • Kw09Kelly says:

    CPI_Training when I had the conversation with my son he cried and felt like he would loose his friends. #It was tough.

  • Kw09Kelly says:

    CPI_Training in the end he got on the wii and was over it. Love my son!