Angry at Autism

March 3, 2009 at 9:48 pm 5 comments

     Fixing or curing C’s autism has never been on my radar screen. His health and happiness are all that’s important to me, and in helping his health, his autism has taken some hits along the way. I’ve wished away the challenges autism has made him face, although I also see the flip side of his becoming a better person for having weathered those challenges.

     During a particularly difficult period a few years back, I visited a therapist who told me to get angry at the autism. I puzzled away at that for months, never coming to a resolution. How could I be angry at the autism? C is autism and autism is C just as much as he is sweet and has dimples. It’s just part of who he is, and being angry at it seems counter-intuitive to me.

     However, I recently understood what it meant to be angry at autism. For once in C’s life, I found myself so angry at something that happened that I wanted it all to go away. I wanted him to be a typical kid, a kid who never would’ve been put through this. More than anything, with a fury and desire I’ve never felt before, I wanted his autism to be gone.

     The feeling was gone almost as quickly as it came, but I suspect I’ll always remember where I was and what was happening when I felt it. In that moment, all I wanted was that one word that is so rightfully taboo in our world because it is such a wrong word. In that moment, I just wanted him to be normal.  But then the feeling went away, and back I went to my normal, in which everything just IS.

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5 Comments Add your own

  • 1. pixiemama  |  March 4, 2009 at 9:43 am

    Yes.

    xo

    Reply
  • 2. robinaltman  |  March 4, 2009 at 8:40 pm

    I hate the rest of the friggin’ world that doesn’t allow for any differences or individuality. Autism is just fine.

    Reply
  • 3. mama mara  |  March 4, 2009 at 10:14 pm

    I sometimes need to get angry at autism, just as I sometimes have to be sad about it or go into denial. For me, accepting autism is a process with a fair amount of grieving. Hard times like you had the other day force you to accept the “loss” of normal that comes with autism. And then acceptance returns, and autism just “is” again.

    xo from me too!

    Exactly. I’m just a lot better at the denial and sad than the angry. 🙂 I’ve been angry at things about the autism and the struggles it causes him, but when the therapist put it that way I found my brain just couldn’t get around it. It was a strange thing for me, and it stuck with me, obviously!

    Reply
  • 4. Erica77777  |  March 5, 2009 at 12:42 am

    I’ll be brutally honest here (and it’s difficult because it is not a popular or at all well-received opinion among special-needs parents)–I don’t know if I personally can ever “accept” the autism.

    I feel the overwhelming drive to keep fighting to help my son and sweep away the rocks out of his path the best that I can; to prevent as much heartache and hurt as possible. If that happens to be through giving him the tools to better navigate the neurotypical world and thus makes him seem or feel less of an outsider, more TYPICAL, so be it.

    He has done almost a 180 turn in the past year for the positive–whether that was accomplished through intensive therapy and facilitated playdates or whether it was a natural course of his progression will always remain a mystery, but I am grateful. He is happier, less anxious and like C, talkative, bright, sensitive and creative. I am sure he will always be quirky and hyperlexic, which I do love and accept as a part of him. But I think I will always be out there fighting against the autism, which, pardon my French, can go screw itself (in my book).

    You know, the acceptance for me has been a long and slow process (even looking back at some early posts I can see how much my words have changed). Just because I wasn’t “angry” doesn’t mean I wasn’t distressed, sad, frustrated, confused, and all of that. And I fully believe that if C hadn’t improved as much as he has, via supplements, fixing his belly, etc., I would feel differently. As I said, his autism has definitely taken some hits along the way. And while I do accept what is, it doesn’t mean I’m not still trying to help C be as happy as he can be – we still do the therapies and still try to give him the skills to survive in this world we live in.

    I love the quirky and hyperlexic too. I’m glad that hasn’t gone away with the things we’ve done. And I feel as though I fight for C every day in so many ways.

    My point is that I honestly don’t think you and I are that far apart in our feelings and beliefs on this. I personally have no problem with what you said or how you said it. I think you said it beautifully!

    Reply
  • 5. Erica77777  |  March 5, 2009 at 11:48 pm

    No, no, I never felt that you and I were that far apart in our feelings on this at all. I just felt the overwhelming need all of the sudden to get it out in the universe that I PERSONALLY wish that my son’s autism would go go take a long walk off a short pier (you know, in case the autism was listening). 😉

    Hey, if the autism ever listens, let me know. 😉

    Reply

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