One boy gave everyone a snapshot of what it means to have autism.
Popular Irish Snapchatter James Kavanagh asked his 13-year-old nephew, Sean, questions about the condition over the app in honor of April's Autism Awareness Month. While the two covered an array of topics, the teen, who has atypical autism -- which means his behavior fits most but not all criteria for typical autism -- summed up the interview with one powerful reminder.
"Most important -- just understand that they're different and they see the world in their own perspective," he said in regards to people with autism.
In the interview, Sean explains his personal experience with the condition. He mentioned that when he was younger, he had speech difficulties and attended speech therapy. The teen later explained how the condition now affects his daily life.
"Loud noises and loud music really get to me," he explained. "I don't like people when they go to close. It makes me a bit uncomfortable when people get too close to me."
Sadly, the teen shared that he's been bullied before and even had to attend a new school because of the aggressive behavior. So Kavanagh also asked his nephew the crucial question of what those who do not have autism can do to support individuals who do.
Sean offered up some valuable pointers. He noted that it's helpful to use literal language and avoid sarcasm, as some kids with autism may not understand sarcasm or irony. The teen also said that some individuals with autism experience sensory sensitivity, so people should be "aware of their sensory environment." He cautioned against using offensive terms like the "r-word," as well.
And of course, it's important to be welcoming.
"Be understanding. Try to let them into your activities," he said.