I Wrote a Training Manual for Autism

Carrie Cariello

The story about United Airlines asking a family and their teenage daughter to leave the plane was all over the news last week. Some people described it as a new low for the autism community.

I’ve read so much about it that I really don’t have anything to add, except this: it scares the heck out of me. It scares me because it could easily, easily happen to our family.

I can picture Jack getting agitated on a plane over something I didn’t see coming; maybe he forgot his Chapstick or his headphones aren’t working or a little kid is kicking his seat from behind.

I’d probably flag down the attendant and ask for another bag of pretzels to distract him or a new set of headphones or suggest maybe he switch seats so he doesn’t make anyone else uncomfortable.

And he or she might look confused for a second…

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