Saturday, April 4, 2009

Filtering through some of the mess

April 3, 2009 transcript from Larry King Live is HERE.

I'm disappointed that the autistic community still sees "warrior" parents as being on an opposite side, as evidenced by Carly's words last night on LKL.

CARLY FLEISCHMANN, LKL BLOG CORRESPONDENT: For as long as I can remember I have had autism. I overheard Jim say that he felt like he didn't remember things when he was (inaudible) -- I also know many autistic kids that are exactly the same way. Parents know what I'm talking about. Kids that can tell you (inaudible) or can memorize line for line different movies and TV shows. Doctors would like to tell you that we have a hard time processing information. It's not really true. Our brains are wired differently. We have take in many conversations at once. I have learned how to filter through some of the mess.

KING: A comment from Carly, our guest blogger with autism: "it's the kids that are lost, because the parents are missing the cues by their children while they're wrapped up in all this."

I found Carly's blog, HERE.
I don't understand why she criticizes parents for "being wrapped up in this", with "this" being treating the biomedical pieces, when I read this from her blog:

"Carly had another message for people who don’t understand autism.

'Autism is hard because you want to act one way, but you can’t always do that. It’s sad that sometimes people don’t know that sometimes I can’t stop myself and they get mad at me. If I could tell people one thing about autism it would be that I don’t want to be this way. But I am, so don’t be mad. Be understanding.'"

Individuals who are on the autism spectrum are the experts, and I listen to them. They are wonderful teachers to us. I've been blessed and privileged to know several expert teachers on-line and in-person. Kassiane Sibley, Sondra Williams and Sharisa Joy Kochmeister have taught me more than anyone about my own daughter by sharing from their experiences. They've taught me about ME. I owe them a debt of gratitude. They have changed ME for the better in how I think about autism, how I go about making decisions for my daughter, not only how, but why I intervene.

An aside: The paragraph above illustrates the fact that there are, indeed, autistic adults. I'm still not sure why folks like Jenny McCarthy and J.B. Handley, who are doing so much good in terms of awareness for treatment of the medical "stuff" we see a lot in autism, would go on LKL and say that there are no autistic adults. That's just crazy. I know a LOT of autistic adults, and statements like that play a big part into why the neurodiverse camp is at odds with the "warrior parent" camp.

The words Carly typed during LKL are disheartening to me, because Carly is missing the point. She can't see that we are on the same side. The parents are doing exactly what Carly says she has learned to do. We parents have learned that, for many of our kids, changing diet, righting vitamin and mineral imbalances, dealing with chronic, systemic yeast, addressing chronic constipation or diarrhea, and other biomedical treatments actually sharpens the "filter" that Carly types about, and allows our children to be who they are, who they were meant to be, by removing obstructions in that filter. Why should any child have to *learn* to filter information because that child has biochemical factors weaken the child's filter? If there are treatments that help (and there are)...and if there are indeed environmental causes that are at play, (and I believe there are), the loving and responsible thing to do is to talk about them, study them, and tell others.

When are we all going to wake up and realize that


PS: I would very much like to see an in-depth interview with Carly. I suspect that Carly's typing speed would not make for good live TV, and a taped interview would be a better format for TV and Carly than LKLive.

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