One mother is using Halloween to brighten her son’s day. Omairis Taylor shared a post on Facebook, which mentioned how she was going to give her 3-year-old son who’s non-verbal, a blue bucket for trick-or-treating. Taylor’s son has autism, but that didn’t stop him or his mother from trick-or-treating last year. Unfortunately, many houses waited for Taylor’s son to say trick-or-treat before giving him any candy.
“Please allow him (or anyone with a Blue Bucket) to enjoy this day,” Taylor wrote. Taylor’s post regarding her son’s situation speaks to many difficulties autistic children have in public settings. Chief marketing officer for the Autistic Society of America, Kristyn Roth, showed admiration for Taylor in a statement for USA today. ” Roth mentioned that the idea of using blue buckets, “is one example of creating an adaptive, enjoyable experience” for a child with autism.
Taylor’s decision to use blue buckets for Halloween is in stark contrast to the Whatcom Middle School story. 11-year old autistic Lucas had his desk put in the bathroom after his mother, Danielle Goodwin, requested a quiet place for her son. According to USA today, a special education teacher responded to Mrs. Goodwin’s request by “putting his desk over a toilet in a staff bathroom.” Goodwin then urged the school to provide better accommodations for her in a Facebook post, which garnered 16,000 reactions from social media users.
It’s terrifying for a child with autism to be around other children and teachers. However, Taylor is trying to make the best of it for her son, while still putting on a smile in the process. “Don’t worry, I’ll say trick-or-treat for him; I’ll get my mom candy tax later,” Taylor wrote.
Halloween tips from the Autism Society of America
The Autism Society of America released tips for families with children with autism for the Halloween season. “Halloween can be a wonderful and exciting event, but the lack of routine and hidden faces may be among the stressors that make Halloween less fun for our loved ones on the autism spectrum,” the organization wrote in 2016. The organization recommended having a plan before trick-or-treating. One of the tips included making sure the child wore a costume that would fit like the child’s regular clothing. The implication being that the child may not be comfortable wearing something different until trying it on a few times. The tip relates to how some autistic spectrum disorder people feel uncomfortable when facing a drastic change.
Another recommendation included finding an alternative Halloween activity for the night. The organization used the example of throwing a Halloween party instead of going out in public on their site. Luckily, there is also a multitude of Halloween movies for children on television. The organization recommended making sure the parents maintained a sense of “normalcy” for their child to not feel overwhelmed.
Although ghouls and zombies may be the most frightening aspect of Halloween for some people, in reality, having to say ‘hello’ can be just as if not more scary for children like Taylor’s son. Whatever the case, it’s good to see that at least one autistic child will have a happy Halloween this year.