In Their Own Words – The Prom that Almost Wasn’t
Brandon, who is now 19 years old, went to his senior prom, but it almost didn’t happen. I wrote the following (edited for content) and e-mailed it to news stations. Minutes later, I received a call from one of those stations.
Brandon, age 18, graduates with a special diploma from high school this year. He has made many friends in this school. Brandon enjoys making new friends and staying in touch with them on the phone. He was excited to purchase the yearbook to have the friends sign it. Brandon neglected to attend a class he was scheduled to be in. He “skipped” class. He was looking for more friends to sign his yearbook. He can not tell time. He doesn’t understand the passage of time. The principal suspended Brandon for two days because of this action, as well as prohibiting him from attending his senior prom, which is just two days away. Her claim is “if he can’t be trusted to be where he is supposed to be, then how can we trust him to remain in the designated area of the prom?”
I pleaded with the principal to allow Brandon to go to senior prom. My pleas went unnoticed. Feeling it was hopeless, I cancelled Brandon’s tux rental. I don’t know if it was family outreach, prayer requests, local news stations, or numerous e-mails to newspapers that made a difference. But moments later I received a call from the principal. She said that it had been arranged for Brandon to attend the prom with a teacher escort. His personal chaperone would be with him at all times. The news stations cancelled their story, since it had a happy ending.
Brandon attended his senior prom, dateless, and he had the best time!
“In Their Own Words” is a series within the Autism Speaks blog which shares the voices of people who have autism, as well as their loved ones. If you have a story you wish to share about your personal experience with autism, please send it to firstname.lastname@example.org. Autism Speaks reserves the right to edit contributions for space, style and content. Because of the volume of submissions, not all can be published on the site.