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Autism Laughs

I ran across several articles on the Internet that implied that autistic children have no sense of humor or implied that autistic children cannot understand humor.

When something is funny or amusing you smile or laugh or giggle. When something is funny or amusing to autistic children, they smile or laugh or giggle.

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© Bobbie Jean Peachey

I frequently took my 18 month old autistic grandson with me when shopping at Walmart. Jacob loved riding in the seat and was very patient while I shopped.

After finishing my shopping I would head for the toy section and Jacob would shop for a toy that he wanted, normally a toy car or a ball.

As I headed for the toy isle my allergies acted up and I started coughing. I couldn't seem to stop. So there I was holding onto the cart where Jacob was sitting, bending over a bit and coughing my head off. Since I am "of a certain age" I was also trying desperately to clamp my legs together, a familiar problem for any woman over the age of 60 if she is laughing uproariously or having a coughing fit.

For some reason Jacob thought that was the funniest thing he had ever seen. I would cough, he would laugh. I would stop to catch my breath and he would watch me. The minute I started to cough again, he laughed again. He laughed so hard he was hanging over the side of the basket so far that I thought he might fall out.

I finally caught my breath long enough to find a bench to sit and recover a bit. Even after I stopped coughing Jacob would watch me and giggle every once in awhile waiting to see if I would start the funny coughing and gasping again.

Yes, autistic children do have a sense of humor. Yes, autistic children do laugh or giggle if something strikes them as funny.

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