I definetly don't get on this blog like I used to. My family is more my focus, as a matter of fact it wasn't too long ago I swore I'd give this blog up. Since the wife expects me to leave her alone occasionally I need some way to vent. Throwing the cats against the wall won't work, they're too quick for me. So it goes.
What brings me back now are the topics of autism & ADHD. My three children have both, as a matter of fact ADHD has been placed on the autism spectrum, so when someone claims their child has it they're automatically considered autistic. My kids have other sprectrum related issues, normally I try to go with the flow. Best to focus on the solution, not be a part of the problem.
But lately I keep running across web articles or radio shows where some self appointed expert will hold forth, never letting his ignorance stop him from bleating out his opinion.
Some of the trash I hear is; A) autism is caused by the MMR vaccine. B) there is no such thing as autism, the children just need firm discipline. C) ADHD is just a sinister plot the feminazi establishment in league with Big Pharmacy cooked up to emasculate our sons. D) ADHD is merely a lack of discipline.
Any one of these rants make my blood boil. Seriously. My children all exhibited anomalies while in the womb, long before they could receive the MMR vaccine. The citing of a plot by the feminazis of our nation along with Big Pharmacy is something of an insult to anyone's intelligence. C'mon, the same folks solemnly pontificating about that sort of a conspiracy would probably have no qualms about downing pills for cancer or heart disease. So it's funny how selective their belief in a nefarious Big Pharmacy entity is. As for feminazis, they exist but every one I've ever dealt with sooner or later crashed and burned due to their hubris.
As for discipline or it's lack, that takes my ire to a whole different level.
I know more about discipline than most. 22 years in the military is a good start. I also had a very abusive father who justified his actions as "discipline". How abusive? Well as a child until the age of 20 I would wipe my ass by taking a stream of toilet paper off the roller, tearing it off sheet by sheet and stacking those sheets one atop the other. Them I'd wipe, peeling away the paper a sheet at a time.
This was all done at my father's behest because he felt I was to blame for an excessive plugging up of the toilet. You get slapped around enough as a kid you'll pick up the damndest habits, like I said that one lasted till I was 20.
Thats one very small example of my exposure to "discipline".
My brother had it worse, he was a chronic bedwetter. On more than one occasion he got to wear his pissed on sheets around his face. Yeah, he knew about "discipline" too.
It isn't just these trips down Memory Lane that fire me up, it's the thought of some asshole trying to lecture me on child rearing some day. In order not to believe in autism there would be several things they'd discount.
That would include the tears of my wife when she's hit hard with another situation brought about solely by autism and knowing our child will never be free of such things. Ever. For my part I slam my fist into something, tears don't work for me but rage does.
It would include seeing the frustration in my childrens' eyes as they realize they're different from their peers and have no way to comprehend the how and why.
It includes knowing that their best friends will always be each other, none of their peers express any intrest in dealing with them. So they're left with their siblings and whatever pets we have. Someday, as they grow older, that is very likely to all change and I don't see how for the better.
It's things like having an 11 year old who still can't cross a street unsupervised.
Having lunch with my kid and wanting to smack another kid who innocently asks, "So what happened to Joe's brain that he's the way he is?" That question gets asked in Joe's presence too.
It's going to Mass and staring down anyone who looks too long at my family when the children get rambunctious.
It's telling my boy he can't have a bicycle this year because I know it'll really hurt to tell him he'll never be safe on a bike.
It's always being on guard against having my children stuffed off in a corner to keep them quiet by their Sunday school teacher who has no training on dealing with autistic kids and won't own up to it.
Its starting every school year off with a lengthy meeting with the teachers, making sure they have some kind of handle on dealing with my children. This is in addition to meetings we have at least twice a year per child to discuss their problems and Individual Education Plans as referenced in the regulatios stemming from the ADA that covers them.
It's literrally spending years of saying the same instructions over and over, every day, every week and hoping that one day it will suddenly "click".
It's looking into their eyes when they have a four star meltdown and seeing theres a part of them that will never understand the world as it is.
It's knowing that no matter how well I take care of them, no matter how long I live, its inevitable that the day will come when they'll be on their own and I may not have done enough.
Last and certainly not least, it's praying to God every fucking day for the safety and happiness of my family and hoping desperately those prayers get answered.
So when someone wants to rant about how ADHD/autism doesn't exist, I wish I could have about 20 minutes alone with them.
Thanks for listening.