A Scary Time For Asperger's Parents

     "You know why our parents didn't have school shootings & all this
       bullsh*#? It's because back then we could beat the sh*t outta the
       weird withdrawn f*#king sh*tbags!"                        
                                                                                      - Facebook User 

     The status above from facebook was one that showed up in my feed because someone who was on my friends list 'Liked' it. I wish I could say this was the only one but its not. Even as I sit here at this computer I can hear from my left two people at the desk next to me talking about it. I'm trying not to listen in but as you all know, when your ear gets trained to hear things its hard. When I'm in ear shot & someone says Autism or Asperger's I hear it. Its a big part of our lives so it catches my ear. 
     A boat load of the media has now back peddled & put our stories about how there is no link between Aspergers & violence but what I think they don't realize is the damage has already been done! You jumped on that bandwagon right away and put stuff out there about how this kid was emotionless, didn't feel pain like normal people, & has this thing called Aspergers. People hear that & even if you take it back it's still there. People as a whole, I think, always take to heart the accusation more than the retraction of that accusation. It's like someone being accused of murder, rape, or molestation that has been proven innocent. You heard that they were proven innocent & the real bad guy was caught & made a full confession! BUT there is always that thought in the back of your mind that maybe...just maybe! The same thing is true for this. Everyone in America heard the BUZZ words you dropped; ASPERGERS, MURDERER, EMOTIONLESS, MENTAL ILLNESS, MASS SHOOTING. Now that you come back & say, "Well, actually there is no link between aspergers and what happened" The link in peoples mind has already been made because maybe...just maybe!
      This whole thing is scary. I just want to keep my kids home with me & lock the world out. I worry about the thing all parents worry about; could this happen at our school, how do you tell your kids about this, do you tell your kids about his or chance someone else leaking it to them? BUT now I also worry about what have other kids heard? Will they say something to my son because he is that kid who acts a bit funny or the one they know has aspergers?  OR am I just over thinking it all & being over protective because that's never happened......nope, never happened before. I can't image what I would do in the situation those parents are in. I'm not sure I could remember how to breath if something happened to one of my boys.

20 comments:

  1. This all started with the school Psychologist who said the words Mental Illness and Asperger's in the same sentence. I have had an issue with the lack of training given to school personnel, but this man was unprofessional and out of line! He did not even mention any other possible emotional or psychological issue which could have contributed, just Asperger's

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. but....asperger's is a mental illness. Damn that psychologist for using proper terminology, even when it hurts your feelings!

      Delete
    2. K, Aspergers is NOT a mental illness. It is a neurological difference in the way information is processed and is sometimes referred to as a communication disorder. We're not talking about hurt feelings, we're talking about kids being bullied and discriminated against because of the ignorance of the adults in their environment.

      Delete
    3. @k it doesn't hurt my feelings & it's not proper terminology. Aspergers not only is classified as a developmental disorder but as of may wil not even be classified at all due to. The change in the DSM-V so before you open your mouth you should probably you hou'll probably get your news from somewhere besides the back of a fruit loops box. Pur feelings are not hurt, we are pissed off, there's a difference.

      Delete
    4. As someone who loves and works with people with Asperger's, I was shocked to find that Asperger's is considered a mental illness. It's hard to swallow tough words. But the bottom line, all people deserve love and respect. We who do not have cognitive or physical challenges should take the time to educate ourselves on the challenges of those who do. It is only then we can be a support rather than be a detriment to those less fortunate.

      Delete
  2. I agree completely. It is a very scary day for parents of aspies. I didn't want to take mine to school. I'm just thankful that they're so young that they may not know what's going on.

    Already had to explain to someone at work that they don't know what was wrong with him and that we will probably never know but blaming it all on Asperger's is wrong. Uggg. So hard to know how much is too much and how much is not enough.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Don't want to send my aspie son to school today. Middle school can be tough enough without him having a big Target on his chest.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I know this is a late response, but we DID send our son to school that week. Last week before the break. We didn't talk to him about the events, we didn't know what to say or how he would process the information. He found out from some kids at school though. We think that is why 2 of the 4 days he was at school that week he had epic meltdowns and had to be brought home around lunch time. He didn't know how to handle the emotions flying around. He wept uncontrollably like I have not seen in a long time. He couldn't really tell us WHY, he just could not control his "rock brain" and had to cry. He has not done it since and had not had as hard a time this school year prior. Kids are complicated, and our little guy especially, but I think we are leaning towards telling L. about the issues so we can help him process the information in a safe and solid environment next time.

      Delete
  4. We had an experience wben our son was first diagnosed by a school psychologist; she pinned the school staff against our so. All because of the diagnosis of Aspergers. It soon got out to other parents that our son was an Aspie. Most didn't and still don't even know what Asperger's is...Our little town gathered their pitchforks and and their mad hysteria and acted as though our son was was the Frankenstein. We have had practice with judging, isolation, and discrimination. The thing that hirts most is that it is directed at our son. Who's knowledge in history, Elvis, Math, and anything technology amazes me....his love animals. People don't care because somewhere down the line someone tarnished Aspergers before we even heard the diagnosis. I hadn't been watching tbe news so I am glad we as a family didn't hear them tar Aspergers but unfortunately as you mentioned their damage has already been done. I fear how my son will be treated in his high school, how his siblings will be treated...I know it is inevitable; before I knew they were blaming I diagnosis I was discussing this with a friend and I told her how our son wasn't understanding why someone would kill so many inocent children. I said try explaining such a sensless act of violence...I mentioned he is an aspie and the atmosphere in the room changed I will never forget the look she gave me. I fear for our children with Aspergers especially now that they have a target that cannot be erased.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. My husband, 56, has Asperger's. He was raised before there was ever such a diagnosis. (The term Asperger's wasn't used until the 1980's). None-the-less, his unusual behavior and communication difficulties made and continue to make him an little bit of an outcast without close friends. Whether people are told your child as Asperger's or not, they will see that he is different and, unfortunately, treat him less than kindly. The key is to educate the neurotypical population about Asperger's unique differences and STRENGTHS. Yes, I said strengths. Your child already has displayed his skills and talents in math and technology and which, I don't doubt, will make him a valuable asset to society. I wish you all the best in your struggles with the ignorant people around you.

      Delete
  5. Shann, I understand that. I have a daughter with Aspergers and people really don't understand. My daughter, at 17, also was very upset that someone could do something like this. She could not understand such a senseless and horrible act. One person, one statement, and we have to fight against descrimination all over again!!

    ReplyDelete
  6. thanks for sharing, I feel the same way and blogged about a similar topic. I pray for our children

    ReplyDelete
  7. Thanks Tom. My feelings exactly.

    ReplyDelete
  8. I agree completely. It sets up people with Asperger's for yet more unfair judgment than they already get.

    ReplyDelete
  9. First of all...the first time the neighbor described how the son was "to himself and his mother had difficulty with him" I told my husband that I'm sure he had Aspergers. Then when that news was actually aired...I cried. The way it came out was so calloused - and I think what's even more calloused is the way it is virutally impossible to get any help from the public school system for our special needs children. They are so concerned with "mainstreaming" them in elementary...that by the time they get into middle school and highschool and their differences are really standing out....it's too late! My husband and I both cried when we found out the shooter had autism...I think I mourned the loss of all the little kids that were taken but I also identified so much with the mother/son.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I have worked both privately and in the educational setting with children who are Autistic for about 20 years. I am also married to someone with Asperger's. I do not believe for one moment that the young man in Connecticut has Asperger's. There are other mental issues, such as Anti-Social Behavior Disorder, that have similar characteristics but with a component of potential violence even to the point of mass murder. We, people who know and love someone with Asperger's, need to educate the public.

      Delete
  10. I can only imagine what you and Sam are feeling right. I was at work the other day and a pharmacist starting talking about how emotionless aspie's are. This coming from a woman that has no remorse for how she acts towards people. (you have to know her) anyways later that day I saw on the Facebook feed where Sam had posted a pic of what jayden wrote as to what he wanted for x-mas and it was for everyone to be happy. My heart hurts for you guys and I wish for jayden and all aspie's happiness.

    ReplyDelete
  11. Sharing an interesting news :-

    http://www.edvantage.com.sg/edvantage/features/people/1535536/Asperger_s_syndrome_so_what_.html

    ReplyDelete
  12. We need YOUR help! Donate now to Helping Hearts for Autism, and give to families in need who are affected by autism.
    By making a donation to Helping Hearts for Autism, you can make an incredible difference in the lives of families like these. With the money collected, Special Learning will give away as many $500 grants to families as donations will allow along with an in-kind match of $500 in Special Learning products to these recipients. Families will be chosen by an unbiased selection committee on a quarterly basis. The need for donations for families like these is SO great, but if enough of us come together, we can certainly make a difference.

    Please visit http://www.special-learning.com/helpinghearts_donations to know more on how you can help.

    ReplyDelete
  13. Thank you, you wrote what's swirling around in my head.......

    ReplyDelete

Your comments are what make this blog awesome! Reading comments always makes my day better!