It’s obvious in our society that many people do not take responsibility for their own actions. I have been in many situations where I have done something wrong, and blamed another person for it. When I went to the Wesley Wonder Kids social skills group, one of the rules in the younger “social pathways” group was “Take Responsibility For Yourself”. For example, when I had problems getting my homework completed, I would constantly blame all the bad teachers that I’ve had in the past for my problems in school. Every time my teachers would lecture me about completing homework and studying, I would always make a negative comment about the teacher of whatever subject we were studying. I would say things like “it would be nice if Mr. Teacher would retire so we didn’t have to deal with him” or “this teacher can’t teach worth anything”. I am sure many high school kids make the same comments about teachers, so I am not alone this time! Taking responsibility for your actions is one of the keys to being successful in life, you definitively jeopardize your future. Unfortunately, people who don’t do this end up in prison, and not many criminals get a second chance in life, they have to stay there for the rest of their lives.
In one of my previous blogs, I wrote about this rule and the rule “Everybody In The World Mistakes, It Doesn’t Have To Ruin Your Day”. I did that because they tied in with each-other, but now I am going to focus on just this rule and expand on it a little bit more. We all know that the teenage years are about making mistakes and learning from them so you don’t make them later on in life. During my early years of high school, I had a problem with completing homework. It wasn’t just because I was not interested in the assignment, it was because I was afraid to ask for help when I needed it. In the past I’ve had teachers that have spoken to me rudely when I would ask for help or accidentally do an assignment wrong. For example, in elementary school I had an art teacher who had a very smart Alec personality. I don’t remember what it was we were working on, but I accidentally did the project wrong and she yelled at me and said “you don’t know what the hell you are doing, go back and fix this now!” Luckily, my teacher heard her say this and she reported it to the principal. Ever since that situation, I have always been afraid to ask for help when I needed it. My social anxiety is part of the blame for this, because of the many bad experiences I have had with people, I am still afraid to ask for help when I need it. The memories from people like my art teacher from elementary school always come back to me when I try to ask for help. I still can’t believe that a teacher would talk to an elementary student like that, that was a very unacceptable thing for her to say.
One of the obvious symptoms in a person with ASD is the lack of social skills, I’m pretty sure you all know that by now. Because of this, they don’t understand empathy, which is the understanding of another persons situation, feelings and motives. For example, I read this on an Autism forum website, it was from a mother of two boys, the older one has Asperger’s Syndrome. The youngest one is a newborn baby, who like all babies, cries when he needs something. The older brother would constantly ask his mother “why is he crying?” “Why does he do that”? “Can we bring him back to the store and find another baby?” His mother tried to explain to him that he was crying because he was hungry. Another unacceptable thing that many kids with Asperger’s Syndrome will do is use their diagnosis as an excuse for their bad behavior. The fact is that Asperger’s is not an excuse for inappropriate behavior! For example, if you get pulled over by a police officer and he gives them attitude, the officer will not care about the fact that they have Asperger’s. Giving a police officer an attitude will most likely get you into even more trouble. I also failed to mention that you could risk losing your driver’s license, and your parents will not be happy if they have to end up driving you everywhere!
Individuals with Autistic Spectrum Disorders often wish they could change the actions in other people. I do feel that way, especially if the person is my friend. I want them to change their behavior because I care about them, and I don’t want to see them face negative consequences for their actions. I am a very sincere person, and in my opinion that is the best way to show a friend you really care about them. Back to reality, the fact is “the only person you can change is yourself”. You know that you can’t change the actions of others, but you can change the way you react to them. If you remember watching trashy talk shows such as Jerry Springer and Maury, that is living proof that there are people out there who demonstrate social skills. I have seen episodes where they take blame on other peoples problems. In the real world, that is very unacceptable. People will not want to be around you if you are constantly negative and blame others for your own problems and mistakes. I know that for a fact, I have caught myself doing that many times, and did it get me anywhere? ABSOLUTELY NOT! For example, I have a neighbor who has a dog who constantly walks right in the middle of the road. Every time I go past his house, I see him sitting on his porch and reading a newspaper. One time I walked passed his house, his dog ran out into the street like it always would, and all of a sudden a car comes speeding down the street and almost hits the dog. Can you guess who this guy threw a fit at? It was me! He flipped out at me because he was too lazy to put his dog on a leash and make sure it stays in the yard. I am just glad this dog was not aggressive, because then I could have pressed charges against the owner if it hurt me in any way. I usually am walking my dog when I go past his house, and she doesn’t like this dog at all. I’ll bet if the dog got hurt by the car that came speeding down the street, he would take all of his anger and frustration on me! This guy seems to think he owns our street. It’s not my fault that he can’t keep control of his, it’s his responsibility.
To wrap up, parents do not teach their kids this rule enough. If they want to be accepted in life, they have to take responsibility for their actions. I can’t think of anything else to say, so I am just going to leave it at this. I hope you enjoyed reading this, and I will be back to write again next week!