Never, as long as I live, will I credit my daughters' debilitating diagnosis with improving MY life or making me a better person. Have I sought (and often created from whole cloth) a silver lining? Yes. But haven't we ALL? We have to find joy where we can. I give autism ZERO credit for anything. ZERO. And I'm STILL no Mother Teresa. Feel free to argue the point in the comments. But some parents do credit autism for making their lives better- read Anne's article. Chris Peden is a devoted father and Catholic living with his family in Northern Virginia. ...He loves hearing stories of how having a family member on the Autism Spectrum made their lives better.
By Anne Dachel
On November 29th the National Catholic Register published an article entitled, 4 Ways Raising a Child with Autism Has Blessed My Life, by Chris Peden, the father of two autistic children.
While I’m sure the piece was well-intended, it revealed the truly desperate situation we all find ourselves when it comes to understanding autism.
Our only recourse is to somehow learn to live in a world of disabled children who never used to be here.
Peden described the struggles he and his wife faced raising their sons and what he has learned from the experience.
Here’s some of what Peden wrote:
…But what I want to share here is less about my wisdom and more about where God has shown me his love by gracing us with the opportunity to raise autistic boys….
I’ve learned simply to trust God more. With so much of my time and energy invested in the rewarding work of raising kids well beyond their early childhood years, I haven’t been able to rely on big money or an impressive LinkedIn profile for positive feelings. …
And so, as we learned how to be better parents to autistic children and better cope ourselves, we also learned how to embrace our unique circumstances. We became stronger as a couple and in our faith. That’s the part of our story that I shared in my book and that we frequently share with younger parents of neurodivergent children. We want them to know that they are not alone — and that there is a balm on Earth and in Heaven for their struggles….
This was admirable, but the final paragraph was for me, totally discouraging.
When I wrote my book, I made it clear, right on the cover, that raising children with autism has been a blessing. Despite many painful moments and frustrating periods, my wife and I remember the words of St. Paul: “I have learned, in whatever state I am, to be content. ... I can do all things in him who strengthens me.” Loving and caring for our two sons has helped my wife and me strengthen our faith and learn to see the world in new ways. With the right support system and healthy habits — and a keen sense of the transcendent good we strive for, purposefully, in our virtuous suffering — anyone in a similar situation can also experience this blessing.
Sadly, this is where we’re all at. Parents have no choice but to accept their lot if they too have one or more children with autism.
I remember back 20 years ago when autism increases were very much in the news. People hadn’t been brainwashed yet into believing that kids with autism were always here like this—they just had a different label. People wanted to know where all the autism was coming from.
The big controversial question was, is the rapidly expanding vaccination schedule behind the exponential increase in autism?
The vaccine claim has now been thoroughly discredited. The far-reaching influence and control of the pharmaceutical industry over the medical community, our public health officials and the media has made the vaccine controversy an untouchable topic.
Now two decades later, autism remains a mystery identified by an appropriate puzzle piece logo.
U.S. officials continue to announce another incredible increase in the autism rate every year or two, all the while they unabashedly tell the world once again that no one knows if this increase means there are more kids with autism.
The media dutifully reports this as meaning there has never been any increase in autism, ever. Throughout human civilization, autism has always affected one in 166 children, one in 88 children, one in 64 children, one in 36 children—whatever the current rate is.
The message to the public is now ingrained in us. Autism is unstoppable, but no one is worried. Autism can never be a crisis. We have to learn to live with autism, embrace autism and never ask where it’s coming from.
April started out as a month for AUTISM AWARENESS. In 2010 Autism Speaks made lighting up blue for autism into a worldwide event.
Today, April isn’t about awareness anymore; it’s now AUTISM ACCEPTANCE MONTH. As more and more children end up on the autism spectrum, those in charge have normalized autism as a fact of life. Many people don’t remember a world where three to five percent of children did not have autism.
Now more than ever we have to make autism into something good, regardless of how much children suffer. I fully expect that this coming April with be renamed CELEBRATE AUTISM MONTH.
We now have the terms, sensory-friendly and neurodiversity to obscure the truth about autism. Whole cities are now Certified Autism Centers.
We make ourselves feel better about the state of childhood today with “Sensory Santas” and special movie showings with lowered lights and sounds.
No one anywhere is talking about what the future holds. We pretend that autism is nothing new, but no one can show us a comparable rate among adults. Our schools are filled with autistic students, but we’re only just beginning to see the creation of group homes for autistic adults.
Our schools struggle to accommodate more and more neurologically damaged children. Everyone from teachers, doctors, librarians, EMTs, police and fire fighters now receive autism training, but no one asks why we weren’t doing this 25 years ago.
IF autism has always been here, why aren’t we all familiar with it?
IF schools have been required to educate disabled children for the last 50 years, why don’t teachers know all about it?
According to officials, a third of children with autism are nonverbal.
More than a quarter of children with autism have profound autism.
Forty percent of children with autism are at risk for wandering off.
A quarter to a third of children with autism experienced regression, a loss of learned skills ending up on the autism spectrum.
This is our scary world today with autism’s ever-increasing numbers. It is hard to see any of this as a God-given opportunity and a blessing.
We have to hope that people wake up before it’s too late. It’s time to stop all the propaganda about autism.
Anne Dachel is Media Editor for Age of Autism.
The Wuhan Cover-Up: And the Terrifying Bioweapons Arms Race (Children’s Health Defense)
By Robert F. Kennedy, Jr.
“Whenever I read, listen to, or debate Bobby, I learn something new and change my mind on at least one or two issues, while vehemently disagreeing with many others. Both the agreements and disagreements stimulate my thinking and emotions, even when they make me angry or concerned. Read him and make up your own minds." —Alan Dershowitz
“The Wuhan Cover-Up will blow out of the water the international disinformation campaign by US and Chinese government officials and their bribed scientists that COVID-19 somehow magically jumped out of the Wuhan wet market. Kennedy’s book will provide the ammunition needed for us lawyers to hold them all legally accountable for this Nuremberg Crime against Humanity.” —Professor Francis A. Boyle, author of the Biological Weapons Anti-Terrorism Act of 1989