To the People Who Live Outside Our World

Cooper 37

To people who live outside of our world:

I have a favor to ask you.

When you see that child screaming uncontrollably on the floor of the supermarket.




Before you blame the parents,

Before you shake your head in disgust,

Before you make snide comments about lack of discipline,

And most importantly, before you judge the child,


And know that…

You may be seeing autism at its most challenging. It’s most confusing.

A child who may simply have seen, heard, or smelled something new and not quite right.

A teen who cannot communicate.

An adult who is overwhelmed.

A person who is trying so hard to live in a world that doesn’t understand them.

And they responded in the only way they know how.

And the parent, well, they are doing their absolute best to help their child through something really hard. And they are doing it with an audience. And under a microscope.

So, stop. Stop judging. Stop blaming. Stop shaming. And pause.


Try to understand. Try to help if possible. Try to learn.

Give grace.

Or move on.

Finding Cooper’s Voice is a safe, humorous, caring and honest place where you can celebrate the unique challenges of parenting a special needs child. Because you’re never alone in the struggles you face. And once you find your people, your allies, your village….all the challenges and struggles will seem just a little bit easier. Welcome to our journey. Follow us on FacebookInstagram, and join our supporter page, Coop’s Troops, for an amazing community full of support and understanding.

Avatar photo

Kate Swenson

Kate Swenson lives in Minnesota with her husband Jamie, and four children, Cooper, Sawyer, Harbor and Wynnie. Kate launched Finding Cooper's Voice from her couch while her now 11-year-old son Cooper was being diagnosed with autism. Back then it was a place to write. Today it is a living, thriving community of people who want to not only advocate for autism, but also make the world a better place for individuals with disabilities and their families. Her first book, Forever Boy, will be released, April 5, 2022.

Share this post: