Table of Contents
Acknowledgements. "Where was this Book when I, like, Needed it?"
Rules, Posers and Speaking a Foreign Language: Introduction.
Need-to-Knows: The Unspoken Rules - In Bullet Points. What you Need
to Know about the Need-to-Knows: Making Sense of the Rules. 1. How
Not to Make a Light Bulb: Why Everything is Hard Before its Easy.
2. The Potty-Training Rule: Knowing When a Thank You is Expected.
3. So You Noticed a Kindness: The Technicalities of Thank You.
Quotealicious. 4. I'm Sorry: The Hardest Words to Say. 5. The
"Perseverance" of "Perserverance": Being Right vs. Being Included.
6. Perfectly Imperfect: Congratulations, You're Human. 7. But I
Wasn't Laughing: Laughing with You vs. Laughing at You.
Quotealicious. 8. Poof! You're Interesting: Being Interesting by
Being Interested. 9. Mirror! Mirror!: Reflect, Reflect, Reflect.
10. You're Welcome: The Power of Compliments. Quotealicious. 11.
Broken Spaghetti: The Benefits of Thinking Like a Wet Noodle. 12.
Boiling the Pasta: How to Make that Flexible Thinking Thing Happen.
13. You've Got to Hold the Pillow: Why Criticism Matters. 14. Take
a Breath and Watch the Hammer: Knowing How to Handle Criticism. 15.
Speak in Sandwiches and Make Suggestions: Knowing How to Give Good
Feedback. Quotealicious. 16. Unfiltered: White Lies and Trust. 17.
Tact and the Triple-Filter: How Honest to Too Honest? 18.
Literally?: What They Actually Mean. 19. Do I Need an Umbrella or
an Ark?: Sorting Mountains from Molehills. 20. Temper, Temper:
There Will Be More Apple Juice Tomorrow. Quotealicious. 21. The
Science of a Greek Goddess: Hygeia, Aphrodite and Why They Were
Such Good Pals. 22. Traveling by Bubble: Transparent Boundaries
that Only NTs See. 23. Choices and Tactics: How to Recognise a
Friend. 24. Who's Who, What's What: Friendship Levels and Cling
Wrap. Quotealicious. 25. Standing Up Straight: Self-Advocacy, Anger
Band-Aids and Being Heard. 26. Talking to Myself: Inner Dialogues
and Old Tapes. 27. Likes, Tweets and Texts: Netiquette
Need-to-Knows. 28. The Loveliest Curve and an Open Door: Beauty and
Chivalry are Alive and Well. 29. There's More for Dinner than
Mashed Potatoes: Missing the Bigger Picture. 30. Wedgies,
Tattletales and Queen Bees: Taking Your Power Back from Bullies.
31. Through the Looking Glass: Laughing at Yourself without Being a
Laughingstock. Stickies (Little Nuggets of Aspie Truth - Sticky-
Note-Sized). Practice Sessions. Stick a Fork in it - We're Done.
AKA: The Conclusion. Resources You Will Actually WANT to Use.
Top secret guide to the hidden social rules of making friends and
conversation, for teens and tweens
About the Author
Jennifer Cook O'Toole has Asperger syndrome and is the mother to
three young Aspie children. She graduated from Brown University,
and attended Columbia University's Graduate School of Social Work.
She has previously worked as a social worker, and a teacher in both
special needs and mainstream education. She has also served on the
Family Advisory Board for Levine Children's Hospital, North
Carolina, and regularly gives presentations at hospitals and local
universities on special needs parenting. In 2002 she was nominated
for Disney's Teacher of the Year Award. More recently, she has been
honored with the GRASP (Global and Regional Asperger Syndrome
Partnership) 2012 Distinguished Spectrumite Medal, as well as the
2012 Temple Grandin Award for "outstanding accomplishment and
contribution to [her] family and community". She lives near
Charlotte, North Carolina.
This is no doubt a very helpful guide, covering a wide range of
issues from Facebook, privacy, power games people play and how to
deal with them, and above all it may help to develop a better
understanding of how to avoid social traps and become a strong
self-confident adult.The book will be of great interest to female
and male adolescents and adults with Asperger syndrome. It offers
some practice items and examples using comics.
The insights it gives are very comprehensive, everything from how
and when to thank people to how to cope with criticism. -- Autism
Support Crawley, Heather Eves
A book always has faults. Right? Not in this case! I just can't
find a bad thing to say about it. Written as a self-help guide for
'Asperkids' it's chock-full of insightful, practical advice on how
to successfully sail the seas of planet NT and succeed... The book
is warm, witty and wise and at GBP13.99 it's a bargain. It's
written to be read by 'Tweens and Teens' on the spectrum but could
easily be used by teachers, parents, and therapy folk as resource
material for individual or group teaching and support. Go buy it!
-- Positive About Autism Blog
O'Toole is uniquely qualified to write this book - she's the proud
mother of three "Asperkids," she's married to an "Asperguy," and is
herself an "aspie." This crucial guide to social interactions
begins with a list of 125 "Need-to-Knows," which run the gamut from
platitudes ("The bigg3est mistake you can make is being too afraid
to make one.") to simple reminders ("Graciously accept compliments
with a simple smile and 'thank you'") and bits of wisdom ("Anger is
abnd0aid emotion. It's a real thing - but the wound you have to
heal is underneath the anger.").... While aimed to help those with
Asperger's navigate the world, O'Toole's approachable guide is also
an invaluable resource for friends and family members of Aspies. --
Her American sense of fun comes out strongly in her writing, and
the black and white comic-style illustrations add to the humorous
approach... There is emphasis on not giving up, on starting over
when things go wrong and on learning what a special and unique
person you are. This will be a really useful tool for both Aspies
and their families, and it fills a gap that needed to be filled. --
I completely agree with Jennifer, and think the way she says it is
just great; these skills and explanations are absolutely necessary
to young people's success. -- Temple Grandin, author of Thinking in
Asperteens rejoice! Finally someone has produced a guide to the
mysteries of teenage social etiquette. Jennifer's brilliant writing
style serves up huge, life-changing advice in small, bite-sized
chunks, making this an invaluable reference point for navigating
the difficult path between childhood and adult life. If you're a
teenager, buy a copy. If you're older, buy one too - it's never too
late to learn those 'secret rules' and apply them in your life. --
Helen Wallace-Iles, Founder and Director, Autism All-Stars UK, and
mother of four children on the Autism spectrum
The joy of knowing that the mistakes of the past have a good chance
of melting away is the real, not-so-secret ingredient that makes
this book shine. -- Michael John Carley, Executive Director, GRASP,
ASTEP, and author of Asperger's From the Inside-Out
Wow! This book is awesome. Jennifer O'Toole's The Asperkid's
(Secret) Book of Social Rules is a triumph of words, wisdom and
wit. It is a fun yet oh so important set of keys that will help
Asperkids of all ages unlock virtually every mystery the NT world
holds. I love it! -- Liane Holliday Willey, author of Pretending to
be Normal and Safety Skills for Asperger Women
Jennifer O'Toole has done it again. Reading this book was like
dipping into a bag of wonderful treasures. A very comprehensive
guide to social rules for Aspies and a brilliant reminder of just
how much NTs take for granted and how hard our Asperkids have to
work each day. This book serves as a 'universal translator' and
will strengthen relationships between Aspies and NTs everywhere. As
a mother, I particularly found Chapter 20 on meltdowns helpful, and
need to remember to 'smell the flowers and blow out the candles'
just as much as my little Asperkid. Our whole family is adopting
the Asperkid positivity vibe. Jennifer is like the favourite Aunt
and best friend we all wish we had. If I could choose one book to
give to my little boy as he grows up, this would be it.' -- Rebecca
Mitchell, UK Psychotherapist (MBACP), author of the blog
lovingmartians.wordpress.com, and very proud Mum to one Asperboy
superhero and his equally amazing NT supersister
Jennifer Cook O'Toole has done it again with The Asperkid's
(Secret) Book of Social Rules. Jennifer is the queen of
understanding and helping others to understand the ins and out of
Asperger syndrome. In this book Jennifer hits on all of the
important issues tweens and teens face and provides ways for your
Asperkids to thrive during this challenging time. Learn rules like
"to be interesting to other people, you first have to be interested
in them", "one mistake does not break a friendship", "being right
isn't always the most important thing even when it feels that way",
and so much more. As the mother of an eight year old with
non-verbal learning disorder, ADD, and SPD, this book is the first
I grab to help both me and my amazing little gal. An incredible
book by an incredible woman. -- Lisa Davis, MPH, creator, host, and
producer of It's Your Health Radio and It's Your Health TV
Not only is The Asperkid's Secret Book of Social Rules a book for
Asperkid teens and tweens, it is also a book for their parents,
caregivers and for anyone who grew up Aspie and wants to understand
themselves and the world around them better. Being undiagnosed
until in my 40s, this is the book I wish I had when I was a
teenager. Thank you Jennifer, for not only making these social
rules no longer 'secret' but for helping create a social survival
guide that helps promote acceptance, enrichment, inspiration and
empowerment for Asperkids everywhere! -- Karen Krejcha, Executive
Director of Autism Empowerment (www.autismempowerment.org), Aspie,
GRASP 2012 DSM Award winner, and loving mom of two sons with autism
and Asperger syndrome
The Asperkid's (Secret) Book of Social Rules is a must-have
resource for tweens and teens with Asperger syndrome. By exposing
the 'secret' thinking of NTs and opening each chapter with a list
of 'need to knows', O'Toole sensitively and candidly explains the
social rules that often confuse teens with Asperger's syndrome. The
graphics, humor, and short chapters make the book lively and
accessible, while O'Toole's own experiences as an individual with
Asperger syndrome helps teens connect personally with her
insightful, practical advice. -- Diane M. Kennedy and Rebecca S.
Banks, authors of Bright Not Broken: Gifted Kids, ADHD, and
There are so many reasons to love this book. It is kid-friendly,
fun, packed with practical tips, and full of respect for those
needing these tips the most. The thing I love best about it,
however, is how appropriate the content is for every student, both
those on the spectrum and those who are not. In fact, we can all
learn something from Jennifer O'Toole's wonderful advice on
relationships, organization, learning, communication and
self-respect." -- Paula Kluth, PhD, author of You're Going to Love
this Kid: Teaching Students with Autism in the Inclusive
reading [O'Toole's] book is making me understand more how his brain
is wired and I am learning SO much. -- Elizabeth Conner, mother of
a child with Asperger syndrome