This 10-Year-Old Boy With Autism Wrote A Poem To Show Why 'Different' Doesn't Mean Broken

by Casey Suglia

We all have our differences. Whether some suffer from depression and anxiety, or dress differently than the "norm," we've all experienced a time where we have felt like someone, somewhere does not understand what we're going through. However, our differences make us unique and truly set us apart from everyone else and can even make us stronger. Which is why this 10-year-old boy with autism wrote a poem — showing why "different" doesn't always mean broken.

According to, the boy who wrote this poem is 10-year-old Benjamin Giroux, a fifth-grade student from New York who has Asperger's Syndrome — a form of autism.

In honor of April being National Poetry Month, Giroux's teacher instructed students to write a poem about themselves, with every few sentences beginning with the words "I am." What came out of that assignment was an incredibly touching and slightly heartbreaking poem about living with autism.

The poem starts off with a few simple statements about himself and how he perceives others.

I am odd, I am new
I wonder if you are too
I hear voices in the air
I see you don't, and thats not fair

However, as Benjamin's poem grows in length, it grows in understanding of who he is and the perceptions of others around him.

I want to not feel blue
I am odd, I am new
I pretend that you are too
I feel like a boy in outerspace
I touch the stars and feel out of place
I wonder what others might think
I cry when people laugh, it makes me shrink
I am odd, I am new
I understand now that so are you

The strength of his simple yet eloquent words is so strong in the poem as well as his understanding of self and those around him. "At first, we felt sad and hurt that he feels isolated, alone, misunderstood, and odd at school," Benjamin's dad, Sonny, told "As the poem went on, we realized that he understands that he's odd and that so is everyone else in their own way, which is what Ben wants everyone to embrace."

I say I, "feel like a castaway"
I dream of a day that thats okay
I try to fit in
I hope that someday I do
I am odd, I am new.

After not reading his poem aloud in front of his class due to anxiety and not thinking it was very good, Ben's dad posted the poem on Facebook. The poem caught the attention of the National Autism Association who shared the poem on their page, where it has garnered over 39,000 likes. "You did an excellent job, Benjamin! You fit right in with us because we're #oddtoo" the page wrote in the photo's caption.

What Benjamin's poem shows the poem's readers that our differences don't make us broken individuals. It shows that we all feel alone sometimes, regardless of who we are and what we're going through. Being different doesn't mean broken — it means our strength lies in ourselves.