Kim Stagliano on Autism, Affection and Auntie Asunta
At IACC Geneticist Reacts to News Autism Is 50% Environmental

P.S. One More Thing

NeverQuitClub By Cathy Jameson

Last week I shared some thoughts about an article I read on The Huffington Post called The Great Global Poisoning Experience  by John DeCock..  I originally wanted to add a post script to my own post ( about one of DeCock’s sentences, but the post script became an essay of its own the longer I thought about it. 

DeCock’s wrote, “… The Scientific American suggests that soaring rates of autism are linked to our constant exposure to toxics. Again, we pay an enormous emotional, practical and financial price to deal with the increase in this disease...” I wonder who he meant by “we” in that sentence.  Since I hadn’t heard of DeCock before stumbling upon his article I did a quick Google search on his work.  It seems that DeCock is a long-time environmental advocate--maybe after years of researching and writing about the environment DeCock has also discovered what many autism parents have already revealed:  a steady build up of toxin exposure can, and does, lead to an eventual autism diagnosis.

DeCock makes bold statements throughout his article.  These statements in DeCock’s article tell me he’s got passion behind his writing. I like that.  Because I’m so determined to learn as much as I can, and in turn share that knowledge with others, I’ve become passionate in my own writing about my son and his special needs. 


Knowing now what I know--that I could have opted out of the recommended vaccines and other medical treatment options for my child--one of my missions in life is to share what happened to Ronan. I strive to share what I can because what happened to Ronan didn’t have to happen at all.  Had I known more then, even just one more thing like vaccines are recommended, not required, I’d certainly be in a very different position now. 

What happened to me as a parent shouldn’t have happened.  The ugly side of the medical world showed its face to me after Ronan got sick.  I was offered only expensive and what was later determined to be ill-suited medication for Ronan.  Proven behavior therapies were available but untouchable as my family’s pocketbook was already seeing lean times.  When Ronan’s problems and medical appointments started to stack up I was forced to read more in order to do more.  I didn’t understand in the beginning what was going on with Ronan so I raced to the medical section of our local library and grabbed any book I thought would reveal an answer. I later came upon and completely devoured David Kirby’s book “Evidence of Harm.”  While reading I learned how it wasn’t just the medical world misguiding new parents like me; the greedy side of politics managed to get their hands in on it, too.  I never knew that lobbyist, pharmaceutical companies and big wig politicians scratched each others’ backs and lined each others’ pockets while never once thinking about how their powerful decisions will affect children. 

In going as far back as I could to trace Ronan’s very first assault to his health and his body, I was shocked.  I felt like I was up against much more than I could ever handle.  I hadn’t yet been exposed to the next organization that Ronan would encounter, but it was soon time for me to learn how much more reading and learning I was going to have to do.  Like a line of dominoes, the medical problems Ronan had only started what was to also affect his whole being.  These issues toppled over into his educational needs.  For those of us affected by the half-assed effort the educational world attempts to provide for our very complex but highly intelligent children, it adds another layer of stress, hardship and worry.  Poor services, inadequate special education and unprofessional professionals are what some of our children are provided.  Over time I’ve learned that Ronan and other children like him have become just a number in a system too tired to care about real human beings. 


I know we do make some great connections and progress here in the autism is treatable community, but it’s going to take more than just our little village to set things right for our children.  We never should have had to work so hard.  We never should have ever have had to band together.  We never should have had to think, eat and breathe autism or vaccine injury or environmental toxin exposure.  But, it is daily that we work so hard, and band together, and eat, sleep and breathe about their diagnosis.  All of this could have and should have stopped when that first child had an adverse reaction to a vaccination.  Unfortunately, that child, and the thousands that have followed in his footsteps, has forced the rest of us into action.

When I became a parent of 1 in 166 children affected back in the early 2000s (which is currently quoted as 1 in 91 children diagnosed), I also became a vocal member of the “we” that DeCock says has paid an enormous emotional, practical and financial price of the disease.  For those out there who don’t know what “we” are up against because they might not directly be involved in the caring for a child on the autism spectrum, I would like to clarify who I believe the “we” is:

WE includes countless (and increasing) numbers of families going bankrupt to care for their children affected by that old pesky exposure to toxins (aka, a diagnosis that eventually gets labeled as autism).  If you don’t believe me, be brave and ask one of us parents how much it costs to care for our children for just one month.  It’s no small change, and it’s a lot more than you think.  Go ahead and ask. I dare you.

WE includes countless (and increasing) numbers of families who can’t afford to financially support their children’s medical, behavioral, nutritional, educational and psychological needs.  But, what else are we supposed to do?  Who else is willing to step up?  It takes a solid rock of a human being to do what is required daily to keep our child with autism alive.  And, because so many of our children have different issues, it takes some individual and inventive tweaking to create a safe house, an appropriate educational program or ideal (and affordable) therapy system to work.  The emotional stress about the financial stress is a huge burden we constantly face.  So are the bills and the struggle to pay them on time.  We are dedicated to make all of that happen and are therefore forced to continue to feed money into the autism maintenance and recovery fund.

WE includes countless (and increasing) numbers of families who are tired, both physically and mentally.  We are tired of the rotten looks, the unwarranted advice and the lack of compassion from family members (yes, family does turn on many in our community).  Some neighbors understand and pitch in, but those nosey shoppers, untrained school district employees or lackadaisical medical personnel who think it’s just bad behavior our kids are suffering really get us down.  My child didn’t choose to be this way, but others sure as heck can control their hurtful words directed toward him.

WE includes countless (and increasing) numbers of families who have turned to state assistance programs specifically designed to help.  But, we are turned away because of wait lists, budget cuts, misfiled paperwork or unreturned phone calls.  When that happens, and that happens to many of us, the emotional faucet of stress is in full stream because honestly, sometimes there really is nowhere else to turn in a time of crisis.

WE includes countless (and increasing) numbers of families who continue to beat their heads against the wall because if we don’t care for our own children, no one else will either. True, you have to ask someone to help you out first, but who else can a parent trust to wake up early to make the GFCF meals, to clean up the poop smears on the walls again, or knows how to calm the sensory overloaded child who can only calm himself by hitting his stomach over and over again? Who else is willing to babysit a 14-year old in diapers?  Who?!  It’s no joke when groups of parents start talking about creating a farm or commune or buying a ranch to house several autism families.  We all understand each other and have already gone to the ends of the earth and back for our children.  It would make sense to band together in a long-term living situation.  But, where will the money, time and resources going to come from to create this autism safe house for many, this utopia of hope?

WE includes countless (and increasing) numbers of parent-turned advocates who didn’t expect their life to be completely turned upside down because of their child’s diagnosis.  Sure, some parents might have knowingly adopted a child with autism, and my heart swells with pride for them being so giving. But, many of us didn’t go to the doctor’s office asking for the contents of that vaccine vial to trigger our child’s reaction, or the allergies, and the attention and behavior problems or their autism.  We are on a new path because of those reactions and are ready to pay it forward.  This is the very reason I continue to share own my experience--so you don’t ever have to.

WE includes countless (and increasing) numbers of typical siblings of affected children who have witnessed the horror and neglect their brother or sister faces.  These siblings will be stronger because they aren’t going to sit still and watch the system fail their family.  My oldest daughter has seen an eye full of what her brother has to endure.  She now recognizes similar children on our outings,“Mom, I can see that boy has some special needs.  He does stuff like Ronan does.”  We usually make friends quickly with the parent and my daughter offers to help.  Just last week we met with a family who had multiple children with special needs. I later asked my daughter what she thought of them.  Her response was, “Good.  I liked being there, the kids were really nice.  I could help the Mom, too.”  You can’t teach the compassion these siblings are going to gain naturally.  I think in the future the careers these siblings will choose, and the politics they will follow will be directly related to what their brother or sister’s lives brought to them. 

WE includes a small but hopeful growing number of business people, statesmen, celebrities, neighbors and friends.  We have witnessed the negative aspects of what caring for a child with autism includes.  We are not going to stand for the deception and delays any longer.  Too much is at stake, not just for us, but for the typical children as well.  Too much has been spent on our children’s incredible needs.  Thankfully, in sharing my own son’s story, some of my friends are stepping up and telling their doctors to stick it.  They are asking those questions I never knew to ask in the exam room.  They are waiving that recommended vaccine schedule because they know they can.  They’re also saying thank you to me for doing what I’ve had to do and say for Ronan.  Two friends have typical children, and I mean t-y-p-i-c-a-l. It’s dreamy really.  Both are interested in how to make things right for the rest of us because they’ve seen all the wrong I’ve had to deal with.  I’m so thankful I could encourage both of them to check out like The Canary Party because they are sick and tired of seeing the crap that they’re being fed in their own medical practices.  It’s up to them to join the cause, but I have a feeling they are more than ready to join because of the way we have been treated. 


I’m no stranger to making my own bold statements.  For years now I’ve taken “pen to paper” in the hopes of educating my extended family, my friends and anyone else willing to listen.  I’m not looking for a pity party, although some days, a good cry does me just fine.  I want to help people see what life is like for Ronan and to know that they have a chance to say no to the madness that invaded my family’s life. 

The “we” I write about in Ronan’s stories includes a team of go-getters who have gone through all of the above. “We” are tired because of it.  The “we” I have in front of me doesn’t take a break and hardly ever slows down.  “We” have made a commitment to go forward always.  The “we” I constantly strive to be is full of determination.  The “we” I’m constantly surrounded by includes Ronan and his desire to learn.  His intelligence exists—it’s in there, in his broken body.  It’s in there. 

Autism we pay an enormous emotional, practical and financial price to deal with the increase in this disease...” 

Autism.  It’s enormous.  And, it’s not going away because “we” are still being deceived.

Autism. It’s emotional.  I’ve never cried harder about anything in my entire life before.  I’ve also never been as proud as who I’ve become because of Ronan.

Autism.  It’s practical.  Until our practical becomes their practical, we’re still the only ones affected by it.  I’d rather say autism is practically everywhere because it’s taking over our country at such alarming rates.  Practically everyone should be doing something about it.  Hopefully everyone will recognize that soon.

Autism. It’s financial.  Well, yeah, it is. It’s financially draining.  It’s raping families’ pocketbooks because of how ridiculously expensive it is to find and maintain appropriate education and therapy.  You’d think insurance might help with some of the medical components of autism, but it doesn’t.  The clauses in the law are so sneaky.  Most everything that benefits the child remains an out-of-pocket expensive.  Sadly, everything is costly for caring for a child like Ronan—from the special diet foods, to the well-trained care providers, to the security and safety measures we have to have in place to keep him from wandering and dying in traffic or a pond. It all costs so much. 

The financial aspect is an unfair slap on the face of every family on the spectrum, but because it’s such a complicated disorder, we seem to fall into several financial traps while we look for help.  Some autism “experts” raise their costs because unsuspecting parents are willing to pay them.  Parents want to do the right thing for their child always and some people tap into that need negatively.  I’ve fallen victim to paying too much for nothing, and I’m embarrassed that I let my own emotions get in front of Ronan’s needs. I’m ticked as hell that someone thought they could bank on my desire to find treatment for my child.  I paid a hefty price to find professional help for Ronan and got nothing in return. 


Autism, vaccine injury and environmental toxin exposure are here.  They have been for a long time and continue to take away our precious children.  If we add one more unnecessary thing to their bodies, I fear we may never be able to undo the serious amount of damage that has been allowed to be done.  We don’t want to be nagging, annoying and repetitive.  We’d like things to be easier, quicker and happier.  We love our children from here to the moon and back. We’d do anything for them and have done a whole lot more.  We’d love to have the chance to go back and make most of this go away.  But, we can’t.  So, that means we are going to nag you, annoy you and repeat over and over and over again that it’s time for a change. 

Our children need help especially before the next generation joins them with their own set of reactions.  Before that happens, we will continue to look for hope in our situation--hope to reduce, remove and recover from the madness that took over.  We will always carry some small piece of hope.  We have to because at the end of today, we’ve still got to help our child get through tomorrow.  One more day.  One more chance to help.  One more chance to hope.

Cathy Jameson is a Contributing Editor for Age of Autism.



Thank you Cathy for sharing so openly and honestly. Even though reading these stories take something out of me sometimes - I know we have to openly talk about this so we can get help for our prescious children.

Cat Jameson

Yes, Angie, please share the post. I'm so glad you found it helpful.

Wishing all of us encouragement and hope as we continue to stand up for our children.



One more thing,

I have often (and in fact just YESTERDAY) talked about finding a whole bunch of families like ours (sadly not hard to) and go and buy up a whole bunch of the $1 and $10 homes for auction all around areas of Detroit..and then rebuild the neightboorhods to be environmentally SAFE for oir kids, build PROPER SCHOOLS for ALL ages and abilities, siblings included!
And then build businesses all which us families need and do frequent, but instead haing them employ our kids and adults...farms with organically raised food, all raised by our kids/adults/families..

Not only woud we have a community in real life like our online community, but also help to rebuild another great American sorry of neglect,,,the city of Detroit...I mean, both our families are neglected in so many ways and the city of Detroit has as well....and now, I am sure there are other areas/cities around like Detroit where we can build our new city! Lol! I have thought about it so much I can literally imagine walking down the street in the community, stopping by an open farmers market on the way back from picking up the kids from school and work!


Cathy, you took the words right out of my mouths, I haven't been able to write it as clearly, completely or as eloquently as you have. I have tried countless times to write something just like this directed to the (now mainly ex) friends and family who all really think they KNOW but also assume we just "do this to ourselves, make more work for ourselves, or evn the worst of the worst, that Autism is JUST THE NEW wanted diagnosis, like um, a reading or educational delay/disorder"....

I hope it's ok, but I am going to forward this to those whom I have tried so many times to explain these things, that we do not choose ANY of this, that the only thing we HAVE CHOOSEN is that we REFUSE to see our children suffer any more. Period.

Thanks for this GREAT piece! You can speak for ME and WE anytime, thats for sure!

PROUD MOM to Ethan, Alex, and Megan

Cherry Sperlin Misra

I very much appreciate articles like this that tell the true story of autism. This is a classic. Thankyou Cathy for always speaking the truth frankly.

Jeannette Bishop

Thank you, Cathy, for all your writings. I thought DeCock's article was very interesting.

I can't help wondering if environmental movements would have gained more traction all along if they focused more on the environmental impact on human health, particularly including the deliberate delivery of poisons into the body in the name of healthcare. Maybe there has always been strong pressure to not question the impact on the health of people because of liability, and perhaps it may just be human nature to want to think one's species more resilient than others, but I think we've reached the point where it is becoming apparent that we have to save our children and the whales together.



Without reducing inflammation/oxidative stress, other therapies can only have limited success. If you look at the literature, the therapies that are most successful are anti-inflammatory therapies (Helminthic therapy, anti-TNF therapy, steroids, etc.). Reducing brain inflammation can bring back language, alter behavioral symptoms. Language requires communication among distant brain regions and this communication breaks down with inflammation/oxidative stress. Once you put out the "fire" so to speak, communication and higher order brain functions such as language can return.

Eileen Nicole Simon

Benedetta, thank you. You are so right about how frustrating it is to try to engage in conversations with academic "experts". I have signed up for the Canary Party, and do hope it can have a meaningful impact.

Cassandra, brain inflammation is one of many diverse etiologic factors associated with autism. All of these factors must affect a "common final pathway" in the brain, an area of the brain sensitive to any disruption, and essential for language development.

Cathy, thank you and other AOA contributors for expressing so well the outrage families of children with autism suffer.



I would suggest an immunology class. Autism is not primarily a brain disease, as Martha Herbert put it aptly "autism is a disease that affects the brain". It's origins are however immunological caused by systemic inflammation that affects the brain most profoundly.

Media Scholar

wonder who he meant by “we” in that sentence.


Proud to be a part of the "we" with you, Cat. Thanks as always.


From what I have noticed Environmentalists have always had passion. Most of the time the passion is very much misplaced, for instances they may worry about silly things that cause economic hardship on the masses, yet helps the elites at the top, and all the while ignoring (they don't care) about the real dangers of damage to actual beings beings.


Eileen Nicole Simon;
I don't want to discourage you --- but

If you take this course and you go in as a student, you are going to --- there comes a time when you can no longer be a student because you are really the teacher.

Can a you sit there and listen to some one that knows so much less in this area than you --- teach,--- or will frustration and anger get the best of you?

So, you will have to speak out, and then they will pressure you to quit or kick you out, and if you sit there day after day and not say anything you might die of a stroke.

You could buy the textbook and read it (again you will be helping them finacally) then write the authors (and be ignored).
I hope the carnary party will someday be as strong as the tea party. We need people inside these Univeristies and in high positions that are on the right side of this issue. But how?


Amen. A-freaking-men. Thank you Cat.

victor pavlovic

Thank you Cathy, we needed that.

Angus Files

The only interest is not in the children but how the stock market is bearing up..glad to see its down 20%...

You have the same story,diffrent part of the world global control by nutters,is what we have to deal with not just a cure for autism



Eileen Nicole Simon

Back in 1964 when I went to the library to lookup autism, the only book I could find was Bernard Rimland's Infantile Autism. He suggested injury of the reticular system of the brain as a possible cause, injury due to exposure to pure oxygen administered to newborns.

In 1969 I enrolled in graduate studies in biochemistry and neuroscience because I could not stomach the nonsense pediatricians tried to get me to embrace. In 1975 I suggested that injury of the inferior colliculi in the midbrain auditory pathway should be investigated as a cause of autism (Simon N. Echolalic speech in childhood autism. Consideration of possible underlying loci of brain damage. Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1975 Nov;32[11]:1439-46).

The inferior colliculi and other auditory system centers have higher blood flow than any other area of the brain, and thus suffer greatest exposure to toxic substances in the circulation. In any case, as pointed out by Rimland so many years ago, the brain is not a uniform organ and toxic insult does not just affect the brain as a whole. The autism community needs to focus anger on brain centers involved in learning to speak.

I am thinking about taking a neuroscience course again this fall to learn about "modern" neuroscience. The textbook has a chapter on the "language gene." How absurd. Language developed as the final stage of auditory system evolution for animal communication.

I will continue to try to promote consideration of particular vulnerable systems in the brain that may prevent normal language development.

David Taylor

Very powerful, Cathy. Thank you for speaking for so many of "we."

Verify your Comment

Previewing your Comment

This is only a preview. Your comment has not yet been posted.

Your comment could not be posted. Error type:
Your comment has been saved. Comments are moderated and will not appear until approved by the author. Post another comment

The letters and numbers you entered did not match the image. Please try again.

As a final step before posting your comment, enter the letters and numbers you see in the image below. This prevents automated programs from posting comments.

Having trouble reading this image? View an alternate.


Post a comment

Comments are moderated, and will not appear until the author has approved them.

Your Information

(Name and email address are required. Email address will not be displayed with the comment.)