New, unfamiliar social situations can be challenging for autistic children
This first day of school can be traumatizing for both parents and children, but especially that autism, where such a drastic change of environment can be overwhelming.
But for an 8-year-old Kansas boy living with autism, his experience was one of terror, until another child stepped in.
Connor Crites was beginning his second grade at Minneha Elementary School in Wichita, Kansas.
But instead of mixing wit other children and exploring the playground, Connor isolated himself and stood in a corner crying.
New, unfamiliar social situations can be challenging for autistic children to process.
Connor found the excitement and stimulation that came with the first day of school too much.
But luckily for Connor, 8-year-old Christian, who was also starting second grade, noticed him struggling and crying by himself.
Without hesitation, Christian walked over to Connor and took his hand.
Still visibly upset, Connor clung to Christians hand as they walked together into school.
Christian’s mother, Courtney Moore, witnessed the scene and snapped a quick photo of the boys:
“I saw him on the ground with Connor as Connor was crying in the corner and he was consoling him,” she said.
“He grabs his hand and walks him to the front door,” she continued.
‘We waited until the bell rang and he walked him inside of the school.”
“The rest is history. They have an inseparable bond,” Moore told KAKE-TV.
Moore shared the photo on Facebook and wrote:
“Blessings come in many forms, and God enables us to be a vessel of love!!”
When Connor’s mother, April Crites, saw the photo, she was moved to tears.
Though she was heartbroken over her son’s visible sorrow, she was y reassured knowing that a kid like Christian had her son’s back.
“I fear every day that someone is going to laugh at him because he doesn’t speak correctly, or laugh at him because he doesn’t sit still or because he jumps up and down and flaps his hands,” Crites told KAKE-TV.
Neither of the boys was concerned with their differences; they simply became friends.
This lesson is a beautiful example of how friendship can come at the most unexpected moments.
“It doesn’t matter the color, it doesn’t matter gender, it doesn’t matter the disability, and it doesn’t matter anything, just be kind, open your heart. It’s what we need in this world,” Crites said.