Liane Kupferberg Carter writes at Huffington Post today that folks in the autism community ought to be civil to each other. After all, "We aren't the enemies. Autism is."
My response over there:
As long as people conceive of autism as an entity to be at war with, we've got a long way to go in gaining autism acceptance.
There is little doubt that individuals on the spectrum face huge challenges and obstacles, that they deal with very real impairments, but some of the biggest impairments involve society's stance that they are defective, diseased or damaged. (edited for spelling)
My fight is not with autism. My children's fight is not with autism, either. Their fight is to overcome the obstacles that society places in their way. Where compassion and acceptance are abundant, they thrive and blossom; they gain and grow like other children do. Yes, it takes a little longer, and they have more issues, but they can and do live productive, valuable lives, regardless of their functional levels.
Compassion would go a long way, as would redefining what we value as a society.
My question, your child grows into adulthood, identifies him or herself intimately with his/her autism: it is a fundamental part of his/her identity. Said child reads your words viewing autism as an enemy to be fought. How will that not read as a fundamental rejection of the person?
Acceptance. Appreciation. Accommodation.
Read the Article at HuffingtonPost