This beautiful book was created by Evaleen Whelton. Evaleen is founder of AUsome Training and Konfident Kidz. She is proudly Autistic and is a passionate educator on all things Autistic. Evaleen has worked with children and young adults for over 20 years in her career as a Speech and Drama Teacher.
In her latest book she addresses important areas of social interaction that are often overlooked for Autistic children. The focus of this book is empowering Neuordivergent kids and teens to understand themselves, their boundaries and how others might try to manipulate them.
The book is full of informative insight and has lots of space for exploratory exercises as well so that the reader can work through each section and learn best strategies for dealing with conflict, bullying and general aspects of non-autistic communication.
Evaleen beautifully breaks down power play and the differences in the way Autistic Culture differs from the social hierarchy in a way that is very helpful to young readers.
Evaleen found out she was Autistic at the age of 37 and has written this book for her young self and every other child like her. “This is a book I wish I had when I was a kid” says Evaleen. “it’s full of positive messages and really helpful tips and advise for Autistic kids and teens.”
Evaleen is fully aware of the dangers of “social skills training” used against Autistic kids. She has created resources and courses that address our differences in communication in a very pro-Autistic way and offer an alternative to awful, offensive and damaging social skills books. She is a proud advocator for Autistic rights and in empowering Autistic kids and their parents to have a better understanding of what it means to be Autistic that reaches for beyond the limited scope of the oppressive and damaging medical model.
This book is an important addition to Evaleen’s collection of Konnect Books and her very popular Konnect Course
You can listen to Evaleen read an excerpt from her book here
Here is an extract from this beautifully empowering book:
“Being sensitive can be a really good thing. We need sensitive people in the world. Being sensitive means that we notice lots of things around us like smells, noises, movements and things like that. It can also be a bit of a pain especially when other people don’t realise how sensitive we are and then our sensitive senses become overwhelmed. When we are sensitive noises can seem louder to us than they do to people who are less sensitive than us. It can also mean that some foods may be hard for us to eat, places may be hard for us to visit and we might feel tired or sick if we get too much light for example.
I’m going to start here talking about standing up for yourself because often it can really make us sad when other people don’t believe us when we say something like a light is hurt- ing us. They may dismiss what we say or tell us that it can’t hurt us. They do this because they don’t understand how sensitive we are, you see.
When people don’t believe us it can mean that we have to put up with pain. And that is real- ly really not fair!
When I was a kid I didn’t know that I was a really sensitive person and sometimes when I complained people didn’t listen. Sometimes people ignored me. I was lucky that my mum and dad always listened to me though. They didn’t try to bribe me to eat foods I couldn’t eat or to wear jeans that felt super uncomfortable and other things like that.
When people ignore our pain it means that we have to put up with that pain. That is really unfair and a really hard thing to do. It can also make us feel sad. Sometimes we might feel that we don’t matter or that they don’t care if we are in pain. But that’s usually not the rea- son. It’s usually that they do not realise that we are that sensitive to stuff. And you totally, absolutely always matter.”
This book is ideal for kids from 9 to 16 years, or thereabouts. It’s ideal for Autistic kids who may need some encouragement embracing their identity and also proudly Autistic kids.
What are people saying about our book for Autistic kids and teens?
Harry Thompson PDA Extraordinaire read Evaleen’s new book and here’s what he had to say about it:
“Now THIS is a very important read indeed.
Evaleen Whelton from AUsome Training has written ‘Standing Up For Myself’ for the purpose of helping Neurodivergent children and teens understand their Autistic identity, remain strong in their Autistic foundation, and to set appropriate boundaries when necessary.
What a sweet, beautiful and lovely read ‘Standing Up For Myself’ was. Evaleen writes with such sensitivity and empathy. I was thinking to myself whilst reading it: “Gosh, my child self seriously needed this book when I was all confused and lonely and in pain.” Reading this book certainly put a smile on my face.
Evaleen Whelton is an Autistic autism trainer whose work I admire and with whom I have had the pleasure of interviewing for my Naughty Autie series.
I urge you all to purchase Evaleen’s book”
Stiof MacAmhalghaidh had this to say:
“The Autistic person is the centre of this universe and assumed to have and be entitled to agency. Throughout, Autistic experiences are framed as ‘we’ and ‘our’ and ‘us,’ a use of language that is overtly ‘insider’… Evaleen is very deliberately ‘writing the book younger me needed’ and the sense of a shared journey, of wisdom from experience, and the open invitation to readers to make the exploration their own is just glorious to see.”
Read the full review here