Why am I so exhausted? I’m an #Autism parent, that’s why – Page 2

Why am I so exhausted? I’m an #Autism parent, that’s why

The amount stress and worry an Autism parent feels at any given time, on any given day, is beyond explanation and defies the norms of what is considered typical parenting. Autism parenting exists in a Universe, entirely on its own. You can’t truly or accurately conflate Autism parenting with typical parenting for a million reasons.

Everyday that I wake up, I’m already exhausted. It doesn’t matter that I’m taking care of myself, losing weight, eating better, exercising daily and on the rare occasions, even getting enough sleep. I’m exhausted on the good days, regardless of what that good day entailed.

What people don’t seem to understand is that Autism parenting is all consuming, there’s almost no room for anything else. Every single aspect of my life is impacted by Autism. My sanity, my marriage, finances, relationships with family or friends as well as my physical and emotional health, are profoundly impacted by Autism.

No matter how exhausted, defeated, overwhelmed, stressed out or anything else for that matter I am, I still have to deal with all the same things that every other person or parent has to deal with as well and often find themselves overwhelmed by.

I don’t exist in a vacuum. Everything in my life impacts everything else in my life. There’s absolutely no way to separate my life as an Autism parent, from who I am as a person.

Trying to find a way to balance what amounts to more than what most human beings are capable of managing, is difficult at best and impossible on every other day.

It’s frustrating when people look at me, with insight into or knowledge of my life, and still don’t understand why I’m so exhausted.

Trust me when I say this or don’t, it changes nothing about the reality of my life and what I deal with. All you need to understand is that Autism Parenting is fucking exhausting. There’s no if and or buts about it. It just is and frankly, sometimes I find it astonishing that I’ve made it this far.

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Hey Rob. It’s nice to meet you sort off. I am a parent of two boys with Autism. Your meme has made it to me from the UK (I’m not in the UK but the US (AZ)). Although I understand what you are saying, some people don’t. I’m actually in a heated discussion over your meme with someone who has 6 autistic kids. As I was going back and forth, I realized that people who don’t actively deal with children or provide care for people on the spectrum AND people who bear their autism flags (I’m actually bantering with the latter) don’t understand that caregivers are people too and that we get tired. Now, I think the former doesn’t understand the triggers or how caregivers have to play an infinite game of Trigger Roulette just by going to the grocery store or mall or doctor’s office so unfortunately, they assume that all parenting is hard because they….just…don’t…get…it. This makes us so frustrated. On the other token, some autism crusaders are so caught up on neurodiversity and inclusiveness for individuals with autism that they make the same statement that clueless NT’s make, “It’s just like parenting,” when in fact it is not just like parenting. This is frustrating to me as well. The crusaders focus on fighting for autism so much that they fail to see there is a group of people, ignored and tired, with our own perspective, too. It’s not just about the individuals’ with autism perspective. Your meme made me feel like someone got me and that it is understandable why I am so exhausted every day because I am. So Thanks.


Actually, I wish the other guy could see what you said. He basically assumed that you were speaking on an entire group of autistic people based off of the picture. It looks like a meme connecting to your blog. It doesn’t connect to a specific story. It may be easier just to show you. Click the link below to see what I am saying. You need to have a linkedin account to view it.

Moving forward, I do believe that it’s different, but their are some universal similarities such as but not limited to exhaustion that affects all caregivers of individuals with autism.



Also, on it’s face on LinkedIn it looks like a meme until you click it, which I did but I don’t think the other parent did, which is why he made so many assumptions that you were making a blanket statement. I knew what you were doing. I called it a meme in my initial post because it looks like a meme, but I understand that it was link to your post and this webpage.


I always click on the link because I know it’s a story behind the poster/title. So I wasn’t confused. Just it looks like a meme at first glance. So some dude got upset that you were making a blanket statement. I don’t know why people think that being exhausted means we don’t find joy in being with our kids. It doesn’t. It just means we are human. You both were saying some of the same points. I honestly feel that if you are not exhausted, you have a huge support network of people or you are lying. It’s human and honest to say that you are tired. No shame in it. It’s also human to feel frustrated when people don’t understand why we are tired.

I’m an asperger. There is such a card application for autism in Europe (or rather to protect us). I… https://t.co/UFNW6zDjKh

Paul Smith

As an autistic adult, I find that I feel the same way. Constantly tired at the moment.


Well, plus you’re a good person trying to help your family. And all 4 of them have serious issues (albeit 2 of them much more so). I have to imagine there may be less diligent autism parents who don’t care, and don’t try to help their family. It’s obvious you’re on the side of the angels.

kimmy gebhardt

Since this was written in response to my post I’m going to reply. I know your life is exhausting. Being a parent is exhausting, being an Autism parent even more so. But my question still stands- why are you so exhausted by having to be out of your house for 10 hours? Exhausted in general I get, but I was curious because you said you were exhausted by that trip to Cleveland and I (falsely, apparently) assumed there was more to it than just your general state of being. That said, and I am sure I will incur your wrath when I say this, you really do minimize what ALL parents go through, and even what some other autism parents go through. I get that your life is difficult, but you honestly sometimes come across as though you believe that no one has it as bad as you do, and I include other autism families in that statement.
In any event, I do hope you have a nice evening and are able to get a walk in. You’ve been doing really well with your exercise and it’s nice to see you excited about something.

Curtis G.

I am make this short. I’m in my late 60’s. I have an adult son on the Autism spectrum. Everything that Rob stated in his post about being exhausted is 100% true and right on the money. And to Kim, I don’t know whether you have someone in your family who is autistic. If you do and you are the caretaker, then you know what Rob has stated wasn’t to minimize what all different parents go through, he was just stating the truth of the impact autism has on the entire family, including the person who has autism. This is not an easy road to have to travel. And anyone who believes it is for a parent of an autistic person or persons, then you need to really sit and think about a life where as Rob stated, your mind, your life and everything are totally enveloped by Autism. I’ve gone through and continue to go through what he and his family go through for the past 30+ years of my life, my wife and my son’s life. Anyone who thinks this is an easy existence and not stressful doesn’t fully understand what it entails to be the caretaker of someone with autism. And I have one son to care for. Rob and his wife have three. So please cut him some slack and try to understand where he is coming from. He’s right in what he’s saying and sharing with other parents. It’s his way of helping others who have autistic children and may be at the start of this journey that will affect their lives from this moment forward. I for one have great admiration for Rob, his wife and his children and what he is trying to do with a very stressful and difficult life situation.

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