The Autistic Journalist

Using words to explain the mind

Autism to the rescue!

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I’m not sure autism played a role in this, but I don’t think teacher Sheri Lowe cared about what conditions her students have either. A 10-year-old autistic boy, who’s also a Cub Scout, employed the Heimlich maneuver when Lowe choked on an apple. Crisis averted, and a boy who was usually picked on by peers is now a hero.

It’s likely that the boy’s experiences with Scouts taught him a few things on handling potential small-scale disasters. News stations have a reputation for hyping up these kinds of stories because of the positive outcome. Autism just got thrown into the mix in the latest version.

The ABC News reporter touched on that, but didn’t frame the story to make the boy’s accomplishment something that he wasn’t expected to do. I’m sure all of his teachers will feel a little more comfortable after seeing his skills :-). While many Scout groups and other organizations that teach safety skills will use this story for their Heimlich lesson plan (to prove that the maneuver does work), psychologists and therapists might want to note this too…as a message to caregivers that autistic people do give a damn about others involved in their lives, even if those feelings aren’t blatantly expressed.

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Written by TheSportsBrain

October 16, 2009 at 11:46 pm

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