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Book Review: You Just Have to Love Me

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You Just Have to Love Me: Mothering Instructions From My Autistic Child by Heidi Rome is a book about support, compassion and empathy.

Rome shares her journey as a parent raising a son on the autism spectrum.  Her writing style parallels a heartwarming conversation with a wise friend whose genuine care and concern has been bundled up into a book full of takeaways useful for any parent, regardless of the types of challenges they may be facing.

Acknowledging Hardships, Sharing Insights

Rome recognizes the difficulties and challenges of parenting a child with autism.  Her goal is to provide parents, not only with what to do along their journey, but gently guides parents in discovering who they want to be as they raise their child.

Sharing the insights she received directly from her son, Rome changes the dynamics and helps parents focus on creating a joyful life with an autistic child.  She shares all the aspects of her journey from the shock of the initial diagnosis, the overwhelming grief and more.

In a time when treatments, guidance and advice are found in abundance online, Rome offers an insightful look into the phases of thought and emotion of life after a diagnosis of autism.

A Recognized Expert

An internationally recognized expert on the autism journey, she writes with a particular focus on mothers.  Based on her experience, Rome has created a parent’s guide of what to do and what not to do while navigating the challenging terrain of advocating for a non-neurotypical child.  

Rome guides parents in making strategic plans to help their children meet both short term and long term goals.

Sharing her personal account, Rome touches on maintaining family structure and safeguarding marriage, while also giving practical advice regarding paperwork organization.

While she recognizes that each case is individual, there are common takeaways which offer the reader ways to avoid common pitfalls in the areas of medical care, education and more.

An Easy Read

An easy read with clear and concise language, the chapters are bookended with inspiring quotes from authors of a variety of backgrounds.  

The informal tone of the book, coupled with the encouraging words of wisdom interspered throughout each chapter, offer the reader the feeling of empowerment.  Rome also shares her expertise as a mentor and coach through the organization she founded: Mom’s Spectrum Oasis.  She explains that her organization was created for mothers “to inspire and support each other, leading them to transform their pain into purpose and peace.” 

The reader can feel how genuinely Rome conveys the deep love a mother has for her child, and the unique bond between them. She teaches parents how to balance self-care with helping one’s child thrive.

A Guide and Support

Rome guides parents through the most challenging of questions, in order to make more informed decisions.  She offers support while encouraging parents to maintain their values and to trust their instincts, even when dealing with the professionals in the field.

Overall, You Just Have to Love Me: Mothering Instructions From My Autistic Child is an enlightening and enjoyable read that tugs at the heartstrings.

Available now on Amazon in paperback or digital format. 


🤍 Over the years, many of you have asked which products I use and recommend. This post contains some of my affiliate links for “making every day the best day” while cooking, entertaining and living life.  

If you buy something through one of those links, you won’t pay a penny more, but I’ll get a small commission which helps keep the lights on. Thanks!

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