Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Caution or Catastrophizing? On knowing when to dial down the blogosphere

As we moms get older, do we "catastrophize" more or less? And what role does the internet play in egging us on in our fear? By catastrophizing I mean taking an issue that requires caution and planning and turning it into a disaster waiting to happen.

After I wrote my post about my upcoming airplane flight with Sayer, I scouting around the internet and found the blogosphere has been burning up about an incident where a mother and her son with autism were kicked off a plane before take-off. Talk about your worst case scenario. But, really, how much do articles like this one really help us in the trenches? They can spur us to advocacy but they can also create ulcers!

Instead, I prefer to look for positives on the internet, like this article "Don't avoid traveling with special needs kids." And I prefer to share resources I have found that are actually useful in mitigating the potential for a melt-down.

One great toolI found is a simple "slide show" about airplane travel that can be downloaded on your computer. It has photos of airports, plane and waiting, and includes short videos with sound - including the roar of take-off. It even shows how you have to take off your shoes at security. It is one of many found at - Learning Software for Children. The site also includes slide shows on going to the doctor, going to the movies, and so on.

How about you? How do you balance the worst that can happen with what you can control to make it less likely to happen? Any tips or ideas? Well, the timer is counting down until it goes off, when I will help Sayer with a marble maze so I gotta run.


Anonymous said...

Hello Carol, I share the blog with daughter Linda now. This is Pam speaking now. I totally agree with emphasizing the positive. If we didn't we would just give up and not go out at all. Something humerous: recently, Geoffrey was with me at Save a Lot grocery store and he opened a bottle of chocolate syrup. No big deal, I thought, I will just buy it. Well, this is a store where you bag your own stuff so I asked Geoff to bag the fresh fruit while I bagged the other stuff. SPlAT goes the syrup, I drop it, and brown goo is all over. I look up at Geoffrey and there he stands, having bagged nothing, and he is calmly eating one of the mangoes that was supposed to be in the bag. That is just the way some days go. And you know what? The same checker checked us out last night and one look at the two of us and she said, "I will bag for you" I accepted the help. Tomorrow is another day. Take care, everyone. Pam

Anonymous said...

I look at those news stories to learn a lesson. For example, the boy who was lost near Mt. St. Helens....the man who was in charge of the search said, "he may not respond to his name, so this could be tough". I have already emailed close family members reminding them that Brian may not answer to his name, either in that situation (and if you go camping, not to lose sight of him).

Now, the case in Florida where the boy was kicked out 'survivor style', I did send SEVERAL emails to that district. That riled me up. What if that happened here? Since I had experienced something similiar, but minor here, I would NOT tolerate it and had the situation been a little different, I would have 'straightened' out that parent.

Unfortunately, we are advocates for all kids with autism. It's just a matter of picking battles.

I am going to check out that website for going to the airport. Brian wants to go to the Nick Hotel (in Florida)....sigh...