Or “Well don’t all 4 year olds do that?”
I get both of those a lot. Like I am making it up that my son has autism. Believe me, I’d rather he didn’t. and for a long time I thought it was just him being an active boy reacting to the stress of moving more than once cross country in a single year.
But take a closer look. He has the emotional stability of a 2 year old (not me over reacting, this is according to the Tucson school district’s evaluators). Yes he has language (no not all kids with autism are nonverbal) but listen closely, the majority is memorized lines from TV with no relationship to present events or lines rearranged from TV to suit the current situation. Very little of his language is original thought. When he does interact with others he has irrational aggression towards them. But unless it is a game of chase you are not likely to see him interacting with others.
Now someone seeing him for 15-20 minutes on a good day will not hear the same monologue/dialogue over and over that we’ve heard for the last 3 days. They will not see him intentionally avoid groups of kids to play by himself on a repeated basis. And they will most likely not see the major meltdowns that occur when he doesn’t get his way or feels he’s being treated unjustly.
So of course “You’d never guess.”
But try living with him, there’s something different.