I stole this quote pic from Jess at http://adiaryofamom.wordpress.com she is one of my two favorite parent bloggers. The quote was taken from a comment left on her post by M over at http://theinvisiblestrings.com I encourage you to check both of them out (and no linking still doesn’t work on my ipad) credit having been given where it’s due…on to today’s post 😉
Let’s think about this concept for a moment…really think about it…done yet?
For any of you who have been on the autism journey for at least….oh I don’t know…30 seconds? You are well aware of how crazy it can be. From the moment your child or yourself are diagnosed, there is a constant stream of suggestions by well intentioned people, an attempt to research will throw you in a thousand different treatment directions, every support/parent/autism group you join is full of “have you tried this?” “Oh I swear…..is helping little Johnny” and so on and so forth. I think as parents in the crazy journey, we just want to help our kids, to “fix”it, to make things easier. We instinctively want to be told “hey follow this step by step plan” and here is the answer you’re looking for! Right over here and here just do this and like magic everything will be ok!
Many of the more widely known organizations tell us about how our children are lost, and will destroy marriages, and that if we don’t fix them we will spiral down a path to mental and physical illness because of the stress. The perpetuation of this mindset, and our natural desire for things to be “normal or better” have led to parents doing some radical, sometimes even dangerous treatments, or constantly feeling guilty they’re not spending every waking moment engaging and seeking more and more intervention for their child. They become so desperate for someone to have all the answers for them that they lose their BS radar.
The truth is NO ONE has all the answers…the closest people to it are the people that live it every day…not some scientist, not some psychiatrist, not a naturopath, not and herbalist…not anyone!. I live with E every day and feel I know him better than anyone on this planet, but yet I am continually stumped. Even so, why would I trust a person who might spend an hour or a day with my child or who has never met him at all, to instantly know exactly what he needs? What he is capable of? I don’t!
In talking with various autistic people over the last year, scouring their blogs, reading their comments on each other’s…the same theme keeps recurring…I have not yet seen one that endorsed the rigorous therapy regimens and assimilation practices that are so widely recommended and followed. What do autistics themselves recommend and wish for this generation? It’s very simple…provide a vehicle for communication, provide support, and love them unconditionally for who they are not despite it…for those non speaking, an additional task…just because they may not be able to show their intelligence in a way you understand, don’t assume it’s not there. The things I just mentioned…sprinkled with a dose of time is the best step by step plan I know of. And the best place to find those answers we seek? The autistic community itself!