Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Does Autism Suck?

After reading here and here about parents hating or not hating their children's autism, I left the following comment:

I put it this way the other day: My kid doesn't suck, but sometimes his autism does.

When his meds are working, and he's his quirky but lovable self, it doesn't suck so much. Sure, it would be nice if, at age 15, he could safely cross a busy street by himself, and take some mainstream classes at his high school, but he loves school and enjoys his special interests. Not that his special interests make up for his social and intellectual deficits. Impressionist art? Sure. (Too bad he dropped that one.) Dental floss? Cash register receipts? Corporate logos? Not so much.

When his meds aren't working, and he's sleeping less than four hours a night, and screaming and pounding on the walls and trying to hurt himself and others, when he physically attacks every member of the family every day for a month or more, saying, "I'm going to kill you!" and meaning it, it sucks to be him, and it sucks to live with him.

The other thing that sucks is the general public expecting him to have some savant skill, and certain autistic celebrities encouraging this idea. They credit autism with their brilliance. Can we also blame it for his meltdowns? Some people's autism sucks worse than others'.


Blogger kathleen said...

YES! I know...and yup..I recently wrote on a post that my kids had enough on their plates without the world insisting that they be brilliant. I get tired of the posts on savants that only mention their particular talent-and not what their everyday life is like..Tired of people speaking/writing very fluently and with great flourish about their own autism-but getting offended when a parent writes about how very hard it can be. We love our kids..there isn't anything that we wouldn't do to help them..to nurture them, to guide them..to ensure that they have the best of everything possible. It is hard. You aren't alone. I hope you all are o.k. :)

August 14, 2012 at 8:20 PM  

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