A PERSONAL LETTER FOR THE WOMAN WHO CALLED THE AUTISTIC POPULATION VIOLENT


 

Elizabeth,

I read your post on Facebook that displayed your vile, contemptuous, biased, hatred towards children on the autism spectrum. I was repulsed by your profanity, judgmental and attacking comments towards parents and special needs children.

My first impulse was to write an angry retort that was directed towards you and your atrocious comments. Upon contemplating this mode of response I realized that snapping back at you would make me the same angry, prejudice, judgmental person that you are. In doing so I would have merely confirmed your contemptuous allegations towards parents and children of the autism community.

I decided to take a different route in expressing my disgust regarding your comments. I am not only speaking for myself but writing this letter as a rebuttal expressing the hurt and anger that the autism community as a whole is feeling towards your comments at the moment.

You have hurt the whole autism community with your allegations. We struggle everyday of the year 24 – 7 to boost our children’s self esteem and assist them in achieving the most independent happy life style that they may possibly have. Your hateful comments, such as saying they should be locked up, they are all violent, that ADHD people do not take their meds, that their mothers should have had abortions, rips down the very self esteem in special needs kids and their parents that they have been trying to build.

Since your comments, I have had special needs parents defend the fact that they never took drugs, that it is not their fault that their children have learning disabilities, and some have had tears in their eyes. You see, we try incredibly hard if not harder to be the best parents we can possibly be to our children. We want the very best for our kids just like parents of neurotypicals.We have the increased responsibilities of carting them to social groups, therapy appointments, occupational therapy and more.

We spend every hour of every day proving to ourselves that we are good parents because of the uncertainty and guilt that bringing up special needs children places on us. Because of your comments regarding children on the spectrum being violent, it has come to my awareness that several children with autism have asked there parents if they are bad because they have autism

You see Elisabeth; your angry words have hurt innocent children in a different way than a violent killer. You have killed with your words however. You have killed the self esteem of children in the autism community and their parents with your words. You have broken their hearts, saddened them and caused insecurity to surface. We do not need guns to kill because words kill people as well. It kills their hopes, dreams, and basically their drive to achieve and hope.

In reading your angry commentary and vulgarity aimed towards the autism community I perceived something else. An angry woman with a filthy mouth who is looking for someone to blame all the wrong doing in society on. You mentioned in your letter that society should stop making excuses for people on the autism spectrum and accept them for who they are. Perhaps you need to stop making excuses for your own anger, accept why you are lashing out at innocent children with autism, and find out why you feel the need to do so.

Now, a brief education for you. There are over 150 types of autism, hence the reason it is referred to as a spectrum. They range from very low functioning to high functioning. As in my sons case he received a bachelors degree with much effort and has a 123 verbal I.Q. In simple terms children on the spectrum come in as many flavors as Baskin Robbins ice-cream.

Some are quiet, some on the spectrum, outgoing, some shy, some are serious, some are incredibly funny. Your sister’s comment that all children on the autism spectrum are violent is not valid. It is obvious by her statement that she was classifying all kids on the spectrum into one group. If she believes so and works with children and adults on the autism spectrum may I suggest it would be a good idea for her to seek different employment options?

Generally children or adults fro that matter possess what is called comorbid when violent. Comorbid means some autistic possess other challenges along with autism. Autism is NOT MENTAL ILLNESS. When an individual is violent another diagnosis within the mental illness grouping is generally present i.e. psychosis, etc. You asked the autism community and society at large to get their facts straight. I suggest at this point that you follow your own advice and learn the facts regarding the autism spectrum before spouting allegations, contemptuous comments, and invalid facts that hurt more people than your realize.

My son has Asperger’s and growing up it was people who directed their anger towards him by bullying him, calling him names, taking advantage of his naïve nature that hurt him much more than he ever hurt anyone. He struggled to get a bachelors degree, he received an award at the end of high school for never missing a day of high school through all four years, his teacher’s spoke of his friendly nature and how my son would go out of his way to smile at everyone and acknowledge them when he entered class. Yes aspies do interact with others in a positive manner, and I AM PROUD TO CALL HIM MY SON!!!!!!!

In closing, I would suggest that you write a letter of apology to the autism community for your contemptuous and hateful comments. The autism community will not take your comments lightly. We are a tight knit community who despite your accusatory comments does not take drugs, are awesome parents who will protect their young with their invisible cat claws that reside behind their finger, and make sure our children are respected, recognized for their talents, and the contributions they have and will make on this earth. We want the best for our kids just like anyone else.

P.S. I NOTICED YOU WROTE YOUR HATE LETTER ON A COMPUTER. You may want to thank the aspie community because it is very likely that some of them were involved in the invention of the very computer you are writing on!!!!

Mari N. M.Ed., CECE

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82 thoughts on “A PERSONAL LETTER FOR THE WOMAN WHO CALLED THE AUTISTIC POPULATION VIOLENT”

  1. I actually READ this letter. I don’t think some did. How would you like it if this was YOU ? Why don’t you all put yourselves into the shoes of the person who has to listen and see this day in and day out. Do your neighbors intrude upon your daily life ? I really feel for her. And I see where she is coming from when she speaks of his future , because she KNOWS there is no getting out of it , ever, she has nothing to look forward to. He is not going to grow up and act better or grow up and move. If he is that bad now , she knows this neighbor is her fate for a very long time. She knows her only option is to move. That is NOT right. She’s the victim here, not the person who got the letter.

    Once , in a restaurant , a person entered with her retarded kid, moaning and screaming loudly. I SWEAR I thought it was the end, my heart jumped. I really thought some psycho with a gun had burst into the bathroom. I had to make my way past them, with his arms flailing and her trying to steer him/her to a stall, I was SO shaken I could barely eat. I felt like suing her.

  2. Totally agree with Jane C.H. Garcia , who said it SO well and intelligently. I just HAPPEN to have a adhd relative who , a child , is, loud, physically and verbally aggressive, cannot control his laughter , thoughts , words, etc.. He is extremely judgemental of others in every way, even though he stomps, yells, cannot see things from anothers point of view and completely different than my kids. When they first met him they were actually nervous to be around him, he is THAT unnerving.

    People with mental disorders are NOT the same, hence the mental disorder behavior CAUISING the diagnosis. If there WERE no difference in behavior , there wouldnt BE a diagnosis. Get it ?

    I agree, you CANNOT have it both ways , you cannot say your child has a disability and get special drugs, checks , attention, then expect others to think of your child as normal. It just doesn’t work that way. Your kid , who may be a nuisance IS going to annoy others. Was she wrong ? Of course , but lets keep whats wrong in perspective, shes somewhat right. , only she shouldnt have put it into writing and sent a letter. If I did THAT with everyone in this world that annoys me or my kids , I would never stop writing and I would hurt some very innocent people.

  3. Do you imagine that it’s even remotely possible you’re far too biased on this subject to respond appropriately?

    EVEN the most basic anecdotal evidence implies that, yes, there is a link between autism and violent behavior, much like there is a link between autism and social dysfunction.

    That certainly does not mean that every single child with autism expresses themselves in a violent manner as there are no absolutes other than death. But all things being equal, in a side by side comparison, a child with autism one without, my money’s on the autistic child having the violent outburst.

    In fact, government sponsored services like Early Intervention programs have therapies to deal with violence specifically among their autistic clients. That wouldn’t be part of their program if this weren’t a relatively common factor linked to autism itself. What’s more, a child without special needs who is merely expressing themselves in a violent manner is not eligible for Early Intervention services for this behavior.

    If the autism community wants to disassociate that label with violence, then they can also decline all services aimed at refocusing and derailing that violence – and pay for them out of pocket, like the parents of neurotypical children must do.

    But you can’t have it both ways.

    1. Eric Butter, assistant professor of pediatrics and psychology at Ohio State University:

      Although not the type of planned, intentional violence in the Connecticut shootings, “Research suggests that aggression among people with autism spectrum conditions can occur 20 percent to 30 percent more often than compared to the general population.” “It is a very human experience that when you cannot explain how you are feeling, that you will then act out in frustration, anger, and aggression.” “Aggression in people with Asperger’s and autism tends to be more reactive, such as “impulsive outbursts, being quick to anger, shoving or pushing, shouting in anger, and being slow to cool off when angry.”

      So, you see, Autism is linked to violent behavior. Does that mean Autistics are planned, methodical killers? No, of course not. But are they more susceptible to violent behavior than the neurotypical population? Yes, they are. Clearly, this is true. During a violent rage, are they likely to harm an animal or a younger child? Yes.

      Please don’t let your bias cloud the facts. It serves no one, especially not the ASD community.

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