Journal of autism and Developmental Disorders
Siblings: The Autism Spectrum Through Our Eyes... is a good read for parents and young adult siblings of children with autism. It offers wisdom of those who have gone before to those now dealing with the issues of having a sibling with autism. It is a concise, 94-page book that will help readers truly understand and appreciate those on the spectrum and how their brothers and sisters perceive their both positive and not-so-positive experiences of having a sibling on the autism spectrum.
Youth in Mind
Most of the reports are upbeat and hopeful. They include lists of do's and don'ts or pros and cons, poems and lessons learned. Young people and parents growing up in a family where there is a child with Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD) will gaining comfort, reassurance and knowledge from these stories... young people will enjoy the short, readable chapters. As one of the contributors, Alyssa says, "The most important job in life is not whatever career you pursue, but to be the best sibling you can be." This book will certainly help readers achieve this goal.
I felt emotional through much of this book, in a bitter-sweet way because it exemplifies all that is wonderful about family... The message that having autism in the family brings out the best in each of us, permeates all the accounts and one senses it is genuine and not just a platitude. As the mother of someone on the spectrum I'd have to concur with each and every one of them. How proud all the parents must be of these children!
For the first time, the 'neurotypical' siblings get to have their say...This book is essential reading for children and teenagers with a sibling on the autistic spectrum, and for parents wishing to understand how autism in the family will affect their neurotypical child... 'Sibling - The Autism Spectrum Through Our Eyes' Edited by Jane Johnson and Anne Van Rensselaer is an anthology of what it is really like to be a brother or a sister to someone on the spectrum. The book is divided into 2 sections containing a total of 19 chapters. Each contributor has sufficient space to recall their experiences and to write about what they consider important. Too many books contain just snippets of opinions which the authors use to champion their own voice and because their statements are kept in context there is less likely to be any misrepresentations of their views...Although the book is written principally for siblings, it is actually also very relevant to parents who feel as if they are desperately failing their other children. The book will more than likely to reassure them. The stories in this book very much corroborate the impressions I have formed about the difficulties and benefits of being a sibling to someone on the spectrum... This account is perhaps more honest and realistic in that it acknowledges the frustrations, embarrassment, a sense of being hard done by without having to counter such comments with an immediate positive. The contributor also mentions the times when their sibling was teased or tormented and they failed to act through fear of themselves becoming victims. I felt that these normal human failings were as essential as the positive presentations. Children need to understand that they will sometimes behave in a way that makes them feel guilty or ashamed. However, once again, the most upsetting thing mentioned was when the contributor's brother was teased and misunderstood... I felt emotional through much of this book, in a bitter-sweet way because it exemplifies all that is wonderful about family. It is about the paramount gift we all have when we share our lives with someone of difference and are forced to learn to accept and love each other, just because we are family, and we have no choice and THAT ultimately is a tremendous gift. The message that having autism in the family brings out the best in each of us, permeates all the accounts and one senses it is genuine and not just a platitude. As the mother of someone on the spectrum I'd have to concur with each and every one of them. How proud all the parents must be of these children (including the grown up ones!)