Nicholas and Ray Hemachandra at the top of Rainbow Falls (Photo by Heather Holt Hill)

Autism 101: Hating Your Autistic Child

Full title and full disclosure: Autism 101: hating your autistic child … and teaching her or him self-loathing. Twice in the past week I’ve seen “I love my child, but I hate autism” posts by parents of autistics. One was written by a real-life friend I respect greatly, and one was by a Facebook friend…

A surprise birthday present arrived today ... that should not have surprised me at all.

Friendship, birthdays, and brownies

My birthday is tomorrow. This morning I was chatting on an app about it with a friend in India. It struck me as I typed that last sentence that it’s kind of remarkable that it’s now unremarkable how I in the United States have someone I consider a friend in India whom I’ve never met and…

Brita Adkinson

A Lot of Gratitude

Brita Adkinson, a Swedish woman and journalist, worked for and with me for several years at New Age Retailer, a national trade magazine. This was 10 years ago or so up in Bellingham, Washington, in the Pacific Northwest of the U.S. Brita had worked for many years at Findhorn in Scotland, and she burnished our New Age…

My son, Nicholas, juggles at the Asheville Botanical Gardens at University of North Carolina – Asheville. (Photo by Tim Robison for the Mountain Xpress)

Anti-Autism Prejudice: Media, Parents, and Damaged Children

My son, Nicholas, was featured on the cover of the major western North Carolina weekly — the Mountain Xpress — a couple of weeks ago and the cover is, without question, The Best Cover Ever. Featuring a photograph by Tim Robison and art design by Megan Kirby, it’s something to frame for Nicholas’ lifetime. Also,…

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Road trip to Jersey

A few Fourth of July notes from today’s road trip to Mount Laurel, New Jersey, from our home in Arden, North Carolina; tomorrow, I drop off my son Nicholas at week-long Dragonfly Forest camp — autism-week edition — near Philadelphia: Getting up at 4 makes a long drive shorter. It also makes a short night…

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Try This With a Banana: My Goodbye — in 2006

If it seems like I’ve stopped posting here — it’s been long enough that the WordPress default font for writing drafts apparently has changed — really I’ve just been moving and wrestling with what I want to and am going to do next, which impact my thoughts and emotions and so the content I create…

Ray Hemachandra

A new video … and thoughts about online identity and legacy

A new promotional video for Family Support Network of Western North Carolina and Mission Children’s Hospital featuring my friend Roxann Colwell, program manager of FSN, and myself just posted on YouTube. Ferriss Roberts, the communication coordinator for Mission Health in Asheville, N.C., created it from her interviews with Roxann and me. The little video is…

Nicholas Hemachandra

Autism Nation: Implications for a 1-in-68 Planet

Let’s begin here: Whether April is Autism Awareness Month or Autism Acceptance Month, I think the place where autism awareness and acceptance need first and foremost to be engaged is within the autism community. Does the autism community — people on the spectrum themselves, families, autism organizations — accept autism? If not, why would anyone…