Fwd: fwd: fwd: fwd: I hate my autistic daughter

I belong to a few closed and/or secret groups regarding Autism and other disabilities. Last night, someone in one of my groups posted the below clip, and some of the parents in my group were dismissive of this mother. They called her names like "bitch", "heartless bitch", "psycho" and more. But an equal number of members came to the defense of this woman. Not in defense of her actions, mind you, but seeming to understand how a mother could reach this breaking point.





So, I watched the clip, and I tried to figure out how I felt/what I thought. This was hard to watch, because I knew that if she was publicly admitting to pushing her daughter and "hitting her on the arm", the odds were that she'd done much worse. Also, WHERE THE F*CK IS THE DAD?? I'm pretty sure that child has half his DNA, so he needs to get his ass of the couch and do his part. Overall, I can't completely condemn this lady, because thank God she had the courage to come onto national T.V. and admit to her feelings before she ended up possibly killing her child.

I sort of feel like we're putting special needs parents like this in a double bind. On the one hand, we want these parents to ASK FOR HELP. We say it all the time. "If only s/he had told someone!" Or, "Holy crap, autism wrecks yet another family!" Then everybody nods and posts "heart" and "hug" emoticons. Someone else puts up a Facebook page in memory of the child. We hold virtual hands and sing "Kum-bay-ya" by the firelight. Then we snuggle deep into our covers, secure in the knowledge that we would never even consider that as an option. And if we have felt these emotions, we post about it, showing that *we've been there*.

In NO WAY am I belittling or judging anyone who has done of the above. We all come here via different paths. I'm just pointing out a general trend as I've noticed it.

On the other hand, when these parents DO ask for help, knowing they will be judged, they find themselves at the center of a public stoning. These parents, warts and all, let it be known that they have reached their limit. They somehow find the courage to express their innermost thoughts, fears, emotions, and personal stories, and in turn, we hurl invectives, pass judgement, and point fingers. If we want things to change...really change, we can't continue to send such mixed messages to those of us who are, deep down, fighting the very same fight we are. Not if we expect things to change for the better.

10 comments:

  1. I can relate to how this mum feels. I really struggle with my 14 year old aspie daughter. Between her, my 5 year old ASD son and having significant mental health issues, I couldn't manage her anger and outbursts. She now lives with her father. I'm hoping that in time, as she moves part the teenage years, that she will become more pleasant to be around. As for now, it is what it is and I can't change it. We are in daily survival mode right now.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. you're in exactly the same place as myself, day in and day out. the only difference for my family is that I have no help, and no father or family to send my son to, so I go through it alone. The major difference is that I know my son is not his disability. And tho I despise the disability and what it has done to our family, I love my son.

      Delete
    2. I truly feel for you. I can't imagine what you've had to deal with, I hope your daughter finds a sense of peace and understanding. My son also has mental health issues, apart from his ASD. Hearing voices, for example. When we decide to have kids, this is the stuff nobody can be prepared for. Do you have a good support system?

      Delete
  2. So true and your words can be applied to sooo many situations... not just autism. If we want change we need to be change. Kindness goes a long way <3

    ReplyDelete
  3. This is absolutely ridiculous! For one, when her daughter was diagnosed, she should have done research on Autism & what to expect. I have 3 books on SID & ASD plus have done a lot of internet research, my son doesn't miss an appt with his pedi or developmental pedi, he's been therapy since he was one & he gets it at school as well, he has an iep & I have calming tools here at home I purchased outta pocket. My son has mild ASD (non verbal due to sensory issues) & severe speech delays & severe sensory issues. I struggle daily but I do research constantly. Stop crying & help your daughter.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Wow! You own THREE books? First, let me congratulate you on your obvious superiority. I'm in complete awe of your ability to cope with your mildly autistic child. The fact that you are able to attend all of his dr.appointments (which eveyone KNOWS is practically impossible, and at the same time, be a completely judgemental bitch. Go, you!

      Delete
    2. What a well written, heart felt blog.

      Delete
  4. this actually made me cry...i feel bad for both the child and the mother...

    ReplyDelete
  5. Being the parent of a child with special needs (especially one on the spectrum) is not for the faint of heart. It is the hardest struggle you will ever have to endure. Other people love to say how 'strong' you are and how much they 'admire' you and how 'lucky' your child is to have you. What they are really saying is "Thank God that isn't me". I have heard people actually say "I could never do what you do". It feels like a lot of pressure. People expect you to be a better parent than the parent of a "normal" child. Some say God gives these special children to special parents...no pressure there, thanks for that! Eventually some of us buy into this and end up thinking we are better parents than most. (lol...our reward to ourselves for surviving another day in the trenches?) On top of that, having a child on the spectrum, I believe, is harder than other disabilities because it is invisible. They look OK, sometimes they act OK, then you have the meltdown in public that makes you look like a horrid parent and you have been made to feel like you have to be an above average parent and the facade crumbles. In reality, there ARE some parents that are not cut out for this. Not everyone can parent a child WITHOUT a disability, why is it any different for parents of children WITH a disability. Thousands of children are adopted every year because the bio. parent feels they cannot parent this child. We need to NOT judge those that have children with disabilities that, for the benefit of the child, choose to not parent them and find them wonderful parents who DO choose to parent them. Bio parents were not given a choice, these children were born to them. They were planning on the perfect child and some people cannot accept arriving in Holland (If you have never read it, please google 'Welcome to Holland') Please don't judge. If you have a child with autism and are successfully parenting, God Bless YOU. You have the mentality, tools and support to do that. But these children deserve to be in a home where they are loved, cherished and can bloom. And that is not always with their biological parent. Some parents need to be told that they have another option. JMHO

    ReplyDelete