(Closed) Protocol for sis-in-law's autistic son at my wedding?

posted 5 days ago in Guests
Post # 106
Member
319 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: September 2016

brereuther :  excellent point ! Most family are familiar with the situation however there are many guests that have no idea about the autistic nephew. I could just imagine the whispers and talking about this young man if an “incident” would occur..it’s not fair to even expose him to that.

Post # 107
Member
1208 posts
Bumble bee

Although I think your word choice in your original choice may have been a little poor, I understand where you are coming from in regards to wanting to make sure all your guest are accomodated including him.  If it is in your budget would it be possible to hire someone like his school teacher or one of his aids that already works with him at school to help he and his mom the day of the event so that both of them can enjoy the day (I’m assuming he has some sort of IEP with his own aids and teachers at school)?  Chances are if someone is someone is with him to comfort him and distract him that he already knows he will do much better and also chances are his mom will be much more comfortable to enjoy herself as well. 

Post # 108
Member
2476 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: February 2014

I’m always one to say that I can’t control my kids (they’re not autistic, they’re two) so I don’t take them to weddings.

My brother doesn’t have any children yet, but I can’t freaking wait until he does.  I will love those kids beyond the limit of reason.  They’ll know it too.  And if one of them has an autism spectrum disorder I will rain that love down on them with every fiber of my being.  I will go to the ends of the earth to make sure that kid never, ever feels in any way lesser.

And if I was marrying a man and he said “hey Jen, I think we should plan something to keep Allen from disrupting our wedding, you know he tends to act out” I would tell him that if he ever tries to stifle or disenfranchise that kid again he will not enjoy the result.  I would rather elope in a dungeon than have a beautiful wedding that risks hurting the feelings of the kid I love so much.

But that’s just me, we’re all entitled to our opinions.  Best of luck in whatever you decide.

Post # 109
Member
727 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: March 2011

jennmariee :  but what if that kid was an adult who choked your FI the first time they met?

Post # 110
Member
2476 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: February 2014

karen12 :  Unconditional love is…unconditional.  I’d still love him if he choked and killed my FI the first time they met.  If he was choking me to death I’d spend my last ounce of breath telling him I loved him, before I died.  Kinda confused by the question to be honest, isn’t that sort of how this stuff works?

Post # 111
Member
3579 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: February 1997

Well, regardless of how offended people would like to be over this issue, if the autistic individual is 18 and is potentially physical and/or violent with others, the family is looking for a lawsuit by taking him to a large social gathering with non-relatives. I can guarantee you that while compassion for others goes a long way, not everyone will simply brush off being put into a choke-hold by an over 6 foot man, disabilities or not. No matter how offended the SIL or others might be, I would try to find a way to have him not attend. We’re talking about more than a disruption. IMO, if he cannot control himself physically, he cannot be taken out in public much longer. It is potentially dangerous to others and to him.

Post # 112
Member
153 posts
Blushing bee

jennmariee :  Do you love your FI unconditionally? Your guests? Famiy members? Because if you knowingly placed your nephew into a situation that was unfamiliar and uncomfortable for him when you know he has violent tendencies in situations like that and he harms or kills someone else that you “love unconditionally” then you don’t really love that other person. If you love your family and friends, you put their safety above involving someone you love for the sake of you enjoying him being here. 

If a person with autism is having a meltdown, they are not enjoying themselves. They are experiencing sensory overload and it is a bad experience for them. Also, you can love someone and still enforce boundaries with them. Unconditional love doesn’t mean giving someone everything they want.

Post # 113
Member
727 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: March 2011

jennmariee :  Ummm, no that isn’t how it works.  Of course, every family is different, but choking people is unacceptable behavior in my family. If you can’t help yourself but to choke people upon being introduced then you get locked up, whether the reason is ASD or mental illness is irrelevant.  YMMV.

Post # 114
Member
2476 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: February 2014

kharpe6 :  It might make you more comfortable to be separated from anyone who has ASD, and you’re welcome to do that, that’s your prerogative.  But if someone choses not to engage in that fear and includes people with ASD in their social occasions that doesn’t mean they’re putting everyone’s lives at risk.  Autism doesn’t make someone a murderous maniac running around a wedding choking anyone they can get their hands on.  I’m so sad to see what people think of this disorder, it’s so far off base.

Post # 115
Member
727 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: March 2011

jennmariee :  I think the point is this particular person who has ASD has been violent and choked the OP the first time they met. Not that anybody thinks that people with autism are any more violent than people without.  But this particular individual is. 

Post # 116
Member
250 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: August 2010

jennmariee :  you did read that violent behavior has been exhibited by the person in question? that it’s not just a gross generality?

Post # 117
Member
7540 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: June 2015

OP stated the concern as this,  “At the last family gathering, he totally disrupted the event (running around the room singing, interrupting people’s speeches, refusing to sit down, etc).”

and then after much outrage, revealed the real problem is choking people. I would have led with the physical assault, or at least mentioned it in the OP, if that were the issue. so that’s confusing. 

Is there a reason why your FI’s entire family is ok with this nephew choking you, putting you in a headlock, and assaulting other people? I would imagine this makes other family gatherings dangerous, so it’s not just your wedding. What does your FI say? 

Post # 118
Member
153 posts
Blushing bee

jennmariee :  “I’d still love him if he choked and killed my FI the first time they met.” 

I don’t assume everyone with ASD is a murderous maniac. You’re the one that made the death example, I simply pointed out how illogical your point is. I still hold to the fact that just because you love someone doesn’t mean you excuse them from any and all expectations and that the more loving thing to do is keep them away from situations that make them so uncomfortable they become violent if that is how they handle meltdowns. 

Also, as I said earlier, one of my very best friend’s son has autism and gets violent. I am very aware of how this disease can disrupt people’s lives that suffer from it and their loved ones. That still doesn’t change the fact that my friend won’t let me around her son because I’m pregnant and she doesn’t want her son to be responsible for harming me or my child if he has a violent melt down. She loves her son unconditionally, however she also loves me and she balances that love for both her son and her friend by avoiding a possibly terrible scenario.

Post # 119
Member
567 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2014

BalletParker :  OP also said that she plays with him…so I’m wondering if play led to roughhousing somehow, which is not totally uncommon with kids or teens in general.

I agree with you that if she was concerned about him physically assaulting people she wouldn’t have voiced her concern the way that she did. The choking seemed more of an afterthought after posters on the Bee told her that she was being insensitive.

If this person has regular violent tendencies that she is concerned about, why not lead with that? Why wouldn’t the family be outraged and concerned? There must more to that story.

My guess is that he’s usually not violent since that didn’t seem to be the primary concern.

Post # 120
Member
2476 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: February 2014

SpiderMum :  Umm no, I did not, I read that the kid was loud. Why would the choking not be in the op?

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