I was teaching Johnny how to read his latest library book last night called “Yo Yes” by Chris Raschka about friendship when he suddenly got sad when we were on this page in the book. The book is about a little boy who is sad because he has no friends. Johnny touched my face and said, “Mommy has two friends.” I was a bit stunned because I thought he was going to talk about himself in relation to the book not me. I went along with him and asked him who are my two friends? Johnny said, “Mommy’s two friends are Johnny and Princess.”
On a sidenote Johnny doesn’t see me really visiting with any friends I usually do it more with Princess while he’s in school. Also most of my friends live far away and he knows that we go visit them and I communicate a lot with them via Facebook.
I think this is a great example of Johnny demonstrating the empathy that he has. Instead of picturing himself in the book and how he would feel he thought of me is mommy and reassured me that I have friends that I’m not alone.
I emailed Johnny’s teacher to let him know about this and this is what he sent me back:
“I feel quite touched by this story. Thank you for sharing it with me. Like your husband once said, it’s not that autistic children can’t feel empathy, they don’t always know how to show it. I am sure you are aware of this, but I thought it would help with what we are observing, good socio-emotional progress.”
Copyright Yo! Yes? by Chris Raschka
Book available there on Amazon : http://www.amazon.ca/Yo-Yes-Chris-Raschka/dp/0439921856