Benjamin Giroux was assigned an open-ended homework task by his teacher. When challenged to compose a poem, Benjamin chose to utilise it as a chance to show others what it’s like to live with autism. Being autistic, Benjamin has perpetually considered himself different when matched to his peers.
Whilst he wants to be treated equal to everybody else, he realises his Autism makes him come across differently. In a poem titled “I Am,” Benjamin strives to show what his world is like. When his father Sonny read it, he was overwhelmed with emotions.
Once you read his poem, it’s clear to see why. Picture reading lines such as “I feel like a boy in outer space / I touch the stars and feel out of place” or “I say I ‘feel like a castaway’ / I dream of a day that that’s okay.”
As a parent, listening to these words from your child will choke you up. Sonny told that he and his wife were proud of their child for writing such a poem, but they didn’t realise he felt this way. They are so proud, although so sad, that this was how he felt.
The poem has gone viral on the Internet since it was first posted. The National Autism Association highlighted Benjamin’s poem and shared it with all of its supporters. Presently, people all over the world can get a real perception of what it’s like to live with Autism.
This is all thanks to Benjamin and his moving poem.
I am certain there are numerous people out there who would love to feel like they could reach the stars or listen to the sounds in the air, but Benjamin is not alone, there are countless children similar to Benjamin out there, that go through the same challenges every day of their life.
Sadly, these children don’t make friends easily, which makes their life really hard since regular people don’t understand them, and that makes them pretty confused since they sense that nobody likes them, that’s not the problem, the difficulty is, they just do not understand them, but these children are really beautiful, it’s really such a disgrace that nobody is ready to get to know them for who they really are, or even to attempt to understand them.
We are simply ‘normals”, however, to an Autistic child, they see us and think we are weird, of course, we are not weird, but to them in their world, we are weird, and they are normal, to us, they are weird and we are normal, but “what is normal?”
The thing is this, in their world, they are comfortable and secure, but in our world, our world is pretty scary for them. It frustrates them, so we have to take a tiny part of our world and make it secure for them, so they are not so disoriented since people with Autism don’t like change, and our world is infinitely evolving around them, whereas in their world, nothing shifts.
These children do have feelings, hidden feelings that they never show anyone, and they are all unique in their own way.
We are all of us, different in our own way, we are all individual in some way or another, none of us is identical. Nevertheless, conformism in our culture wants us all to be identical, but these children do not fit into that level of conventionality.
Benjamin’s poem is brilliant, his message is stark, but he has hit the nail on its head.
Some people feel guilty about a child with Autism since they don’t believe that they can talk to them, it seems like a whole different level to them, but actually, all they have to do is smile, you don’t have to manage the situation, they will do that for you because all you have to do is adapt to their world, and see them for who they really are.
It’s a touchy subject since there are a lot of people out there that don’t know how to manage the situation and display hostility towards Autistic people, also family members because they just don’t understand but let me acquaint you, these children are not monsters, and to think this is ridiculous.
Being Autistic might make them slightly different, but what a dull world we would live in if we were all the same, and we must open our horizons if we are actually going to communicate with others, whether they be Autistic or not.