If you’re looking for a magic pill to “cure” your child of autism, just stop reading and put your head in a bucket of ice water and come back when you wake up. There is NO cure for autism at this time...DO NOT PUT YOUR FAITH IN MEDICINE to be the end-all, be-all to make your child “typical”…don’t go there.
As a parent you’re always looking for a reason why your child has autism. Was it something I did? Was it something he ate? I ate? A shot? A medication? Was he born with it?
Once you get past that…the next thing a parent wants to do is have their viewpoint VALIDATED. That’s HUGE in the autism world. Why wouldn’t it be? In every world we want to be making the smartest and best decision regardless of the topic. No one wants to be lauded for making bad decisions.
Validation is critical to parents. So much that parents will go toe-to-toe with anyone else who is contrary to their views…yes, very political in the autism world.
When my now 6-year-old son with autism was just diagnosed, my wife and I tried looking around for groups and organizations that could lend us support, guidance and be a safe place for us and our son.
We went to one organization in the area that is well respected and good for many…WOW…wrong place for us. We were still researching therapies, medications, treatments, learning about quackery and as we started meeting other parents it was AMAZING how we were bombarded with this:
“Whatdoyouthinkaboutmeds? Surelyyouhavetotrythiswayofdoingthings! Wedothisandthatforourchildwithautismandsoshouldyou!!!!”
If you need me to slow it down and be translated for you…you can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Here’s my take on medication….pay attention. Don’t fear medication but be smart. Do your own homework. Don’t just get advice from friends, relatives, other parents with kids on the spectrum. Heck, don’t just talk to your pediatrician. Go to the experts. Find the place in your community where they have pediatric specialists who deal with ASD kids on a constant basis.
Ask them a MILLION questions…Hint: when you go to the specialist, take a notepad with all your questions written down because you’re going to have a BBBBBillion questions and you’re going to forget all of them about 5 seconds after you walk through the door.
We have our son on medication that evens him out. We tried a number of meds prior to this one (if you ask me what it is I have no idea because it looks like this: “Rheisrporesalieoneerdoneal” on the label…seriously?!) many of them didn’t do a darn thing…some of them had a negative impact on him.
It’s not the Magic Pill that will one day cure him. I would love for that pill to be invented, and maybe it will be, but for right now…we’re very happy with the medication he takes to settle him down, help him focus, not stem as much and give him better eye contact.
BE CAREFUL with quackery…there are tons of people out there with potions, cures, pills, supplements…vitamins and supplements are good for everyone, but know what you put in your child’s body before you do it…don’t just take it because you saw a cool Website or someone threw a fancy brochure in front of you.
You are your child’s advocate. Do your homework. Don’t be afraid of medicine…IF IT’S THE RIGHT THING FOR YOUR CHILD AND YOUR FAMILY.
Remember…every child is different so what might “work” for one child on the spectrum might not be the best solution for your child.
Don’t be one of those “validation parents” either…ugh, makes me sick…if it’s right for your child then GREAT…that doesn’t mean it’s right for everyone. Don’t pester or fight some other parent if they don’t see eye-to-eye with you…the last thing our children need are a bunch of parents fighting over medication, therapy, blaa blaaa blaaa…respect one another and their views, certainly have open conversations but don’t get all political and righteous on the topic…not worth it.
So what do you think?