Gaslighting Your Kids

Autistic people have different sensory experiences, and when a parent either disagrees with or denies those sensory experiences, the impact it has on the autistic kid is gaslighting, even if it wasn’t intentional.

My son is having stomach trouble at school. Twice in the last week he’s gone to the nurse because he feels bad after he eats. None of us are quite sure what’s going on down there. We burp and belch and fart and look confused. We also bang our shins into doorframes or chair legs, our shoulders into walls or doors. We’ll go from not noticing that we’re bleeding to screaming and nearly passing out from the pain of a paper cut.

And now I’m trying to keep this in mind when my kids complain of ailments, that they might not be sick, but they feel something, and they might not know what it is, or how to describe it, but it is real. You have to treat it like it’s real, and not tell them that it isn’t.

Autistic Sensory Pain and the Medical Consequences – Autistic Science Person