Nicky has some stimming behaviors (arching his back, flapping hands, some vocalization) he exhibits when he's in a noisy crowded place, especially when he's tired. For the most part, I'm immune to the slightly lingering stares and the pitying smiles. But, it was the reaction of another child that hurt the most.
We were at a neighborhood Mexican restaurant recently. Nicky and I walked out into the lobby while the others finished their meals. There was a boy about 3 years old sitting on a bench and Nicky crawled over and then climbed up next to the boy. N started stimming. The boy took one look at Nicky, climbed down and hid behind his mother.
Sigh, perhaps I was wrong and the boy wasn't frightened by Nicky. I hope so. I so want him to have friendships with other children and not scare them. He was certainly well liked by the other children at school. They were always glad to see him. And the children in our neighborhood want to play with him.