He has artism...meaning autism. That's what the woman said.
I was shopping with my daughter yesterday. She was in front of me, pushing the cart. We noticed a woman and boy, around ten, walking toward us. At first I thought the woman had a problem. She was nervous and hovering over the boy with both arms on either side of him, trying to control where he went and what he did. He didn't say a word, just seemed interested in touching everything along the isle. As they walked past us he reached out and ran his hand over my daughter's butt.
I know my expression must have given me away. I was in shock. My daughter looked back at me as if to say, what the hell? That's when the woman said, "It's okay, he has artism." Is it okay?
I don't know anything about autism except the little bit I've seen on TV. I feel for those who have to live with it and deal with it every day. But am I wrong to think that the woman should have tried to explain to the boy that you don't touch strangers? Someone else might have reacted differently and screamed molestation, or reacted physically. She didn't even offer an apology and her saying it's okay just didn't sit right with me.
The little boy just kept on walking as if nothing happened, touching everything he found interesting and the woman went right back to hovering over him and putting things back that he picked up. I don't even think she was shopping for anything.