There was a question floating around Facebook the other day asking: “In honor of Autism Awareness Month,: If there were some magic pill that came out tomorrow that would completely cure your child of autism, would you give it to them?”
You could select from one of the previously created answers, or add one yourself:
- No, I love my child just the way they are!
- Yes but only because the world is cruel to my child with autism.
- Yes, but I would not want to lose his great personality.
- Yes, I hate the fact that they have autism.
- Heck no! I wouldn't change who my child was destined to be!
- No because my child’s autism makes him who he is!
- Yes so he would have a better life
- No we need to change how others think and act towards them
- Yes, my child deserves to be just as normal as everyone else.
- Yes, because that's what she wants. It disadvantages her life.
- BUT I LOVE MY GRANDSON JUST AS HE THE WAY HE IS.
Here was my response to the question:
I think these answers are a little harsh. Autism doesn’t defy who a person is. You can still love your child just the way they are if they didn’t have autism. You can still be a better person just because your child doesn’t have autism. The world is still cruel regardless. And frankly, ‘normal’ is a dryer setting, and should never be used as a description or characteristic. If there was a cure for autism, I’d be the first in line, and anyone that wouldn’t join me in that line, is in denial.
Ok maybe not in denial, but you get my point. But I do agree that we do need to change how others think and act towards people in general. Which brings me to this.
Today I read a beautifully written blog by Stuart Duncan entitled: How did ‘cure’ and ‘acceptance’ get to be such bad words?. If you have ever doubted, questioned, or argued against the use of those two words, I strongly urge you to read it. In fact you should just read it regardless.
Here is an excerpt from his thoughts on a new way to think about old words:
“Perhaps a cure doesn’t have to mean “removing all” and instead can mean “removing the barriers”... implying that they’ll still have autism but maybe now they can talk, leave home, hold down a job and start a family of their own.
Perhaps acceptance doesn’t have to mean that the world just says “well, they’ll never talk.. accept it” and instead means that the world accepts that there needs to be a change in priorities, a change in how funding is not available, a change in how parents feel so alone with no where to go.
The world isn’t black and white. And the world isn’t just about you. We can co-exist... and understand that people want what they want and that they have their reasons for wanting it.
Don’t be so quick to judge, don’t be so quick to get defensive. A cure is not a cure for all and acceptance isn’t acceptance for all. Either support each other in their goals and desires or don’t. There’s no reason to hate.”
Which then begs the question, as parents, are we not all on the same boat to the same destination? Don’t we all want what we believe to be the best for our children?
Thanks for reading,