Posted by: l2bb | June 10, 2010

The importance of friendship

I recently went to a seminar by Dr. Lee Sturgeon, a specialist in the field of Autism Spectrum Disorders.  It was a great day.  But one of the things that affected me most were some statistics he shared based on research by Attwood (2007).

The reason why we should be concerned:

Statistics tell us that children with disabilities experience about twice the level of bullying as children without disabilities.  However, Attwood’s statistics for children with Aspergers Syndrome are even more concerning.

He found that children with Aspergers Syndrome are 71% more likely to be teased than their peers.

Why?

One of the key issues is that Aspergers Syndrome is a “hidden” disability.  That is, there is no wheelchair, no missing limbs, no physical difference.

Here are more of Attwood’s statistics about children with Aspergers that give us more clues:

are 82% more likely to seek solitude

are 18% more likely to have imaginary friends

48% have unusual mannerisms

50% experience motor clumsiness

20% experience blinking or other physical tics

28% have a different accent to their family/peers

73% have difficulties with handwriting

80% experience problems with organisation and time management

Why we should take it seriously

Here are some of Attwood’s statistics about children with Aspergers that tell us how seriously we should take this issue:

Children with Aspergers Syndrome are

34% more likely to experience anxiety

33% more likely to be sad

64% more likely to be angry

What can we do?

I have discussed this in a series of posts at www.learn2bebuddies.blogspot.com

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Responses

  1. …there is no wheelchair, no missing limbs, no physical difference. Children with mental health problems also experience the same thing. Bullying of these most vulnerable kids is a serious issue. Society, parents and schools especially, must stop talking about bullying and DO something about this cruel treatment subjected to so many right underneath our noses. Lorna d’Entremont

  2. So very true!


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