My fiance's daughter has severe autism and fragile x. I never new that even existed til i met britteny. She is 16 years old, but is kinda like a big version of a 6 year old. She bounces and rocks constantly, she wears diapers, she makes noises of all kinds constantly. She mimics and repeats people around her. When you talk to her she repeats what you say. She gets angry and very loud and ocasionally…View more
Some people with autism are merely socially eccentric; others are grossly disabled. The incidence of autism is on the upswing, and no one really knows why, though new genetic work promises some answers. The condition can cause great suffering to those affected and to their families.
Symptoms may include violence, wordlessness, inappropriate interpersonal behavior, and manifestations of anxiety and despair. Yet some people, under the banner of neurodiversity, have claimed autism as an identity, arguing that it is simply another way of relating—one that is valid and even precious. Some people with autism have made significant contributions to the larger society, and stigmatizing them is both shortsighted and dangerous.scroll
in , united statesfragile x
Amy Mitz We Must Build Many Orchards NH , USA
I was born a "typical" child but have known cognitive disability since birth. My older brother has autism, but was diagnosed later in life. He is now 61 years old and despite doctor recommendations early on, always remained at home, but no school existed for him until he turned 8 and the school was a 2 hour bus ride away, a bus that he had been riding, to my mother's dismay, had broken brakes - and…View more
Erika C Waste Not, Want Not NH , USA
My son was diagnosed with Autism at the age of 1yr, 10mos. I was in denial from that day. We sought more opinions and though I am lucky to live right outside of Boston, the mecca of medicine, having access to the best, most cutting-edge of treatment, I still had a very difficult time accepting that my son wasn't "normal". To me, he had up to that point seemed normal because he was and is my only child,…View more
Viktor Prizgintas Car Talk NY , USA
Do you want us to provide bus transportation ?View more
Interestingly enough, this was a common and persistent question throughout the first three years of public education for Alex. In the matrix of autism treatment, there must be a class special education administrators take that emphasizes the need for autistic children to be transported by bus to improve their “socialization” skills. I…
rob boileau wouldnt change anything on , canada
My daughter is autistic. I admit it took a long time of coming to acceptance of this reality in our life. I have been asked many times if I could change anything and truthfully I wouldn't. This disability being present in our family has taught me so much about life. After spending countless hours studying autism, I do know I can face anything that comes our way. Yes, there were times when she was…View more
anonymous Mental Illness is a b.... MO , U.S.A.
Mental illness is a bitch.View more
There is no other word.
Our family has been struggling in an up-close-and-personal way with some form of mental illness for more than 10 years.
This is not a whine, a how-to or quite possibly anything constructive but might at be least cathartic for me.
I won’t use names to protect the innocent but it wouldn’t take a rocket…
anonymous Your son has autism.... NY , USA
“Your Son Has….View more
… Autism.” That was the message on the voice mail. Now for most parents that might deliver a terrible shock, but somehow -- at least for me -- this was more of a clarification about what might have been missing from my family tree. Not really so much about my son, but more so about my family when I was growing up. Finally, there was a term that made sense for why…
anonymous New voice through email Japan
I have a 13 year old niece that is on the high functioning end of the spectrum. She also has a seizure disorder, and will speak but very little. After reading "Far from the Tree" there was someone with autism that told Andrew that they wish that everyone knew that people with autism know more than what we think they know. I remembered that my niece liked to look up favorite cartoons online so I know…View more
anonymous Far - Feels Like the Ocean CA , USA
It was never in my genes to parent this way. Instead it's a learning curve that we are all going through in our family. Instead it's a grieving process and then a healing, accepting process that will be life-long. Such is our journey as the family of a child with intellectual disability, Tourette Syndrome and ADHD. The early years of intervention, therapy and special education didn't teach any of…View more
Carolyn W Thanks, Andrew Solomon MI , USA
I really just want to communicate my deep gratitude to Andrew Solomon. I am the bipolar mom of a child misdiagnosed with autism. I went through a horrific breakdown when our son was diagnosed at age 3, nearly seven years ago. I read The Noonday Demon a couple months ago and just finished Far from the Tree. I have seen countless psychiatrists and therapists but no one has ever given me more insight…View more
anonymous Waiting for Will Ia , USA
Our son came to us through the Foster Care system when he was 4. We adopted him, and his 2 siblings, 2 years later. We know that he suffered emotional, physical and, now we know, sexual abuse. He struggles in social situations, had previously had violent outbursts, and has finally been able to show empathy. This past year he broke our trust that we had been building, and he broke our hearts. We now…View more
Dennise O'Grady One Step Forward, Many Steps Back NJ , USA
When the Newtown shooting happened and Adam Lanza's brother said something like, "My brother has Asperger's or a personality disorder," my heart sank. My own son with Asperger Syndrome/HFA has just gotten a job at 14, wore button-down shirts everyday, and didn't have a single friend (but was not anti-social). I work as aView more
teacher in a school and, by Monday, an informal parent task force was forming…
Eraina Davis The Good Life: Autism IL , United States
I gave birth to Taylor when I was twenty years old. I was a sophomore in college when my parents retired to Florida. In an attempt to create a good life for us, I left Chicago at the age of 23 to teach in NYC. Over the past seven years, I obtained three academic degrees and traveled to three different cities. As the parent of an autistic child I experienced some of the best and worst challenges on…View more
anonymous Felix & The Birth of Extreme Kids & Crew NY , USA
I love this book! It so eloquently records the feelings and insights that I’ve had while parenting Felix, my nine-year-old son, who has autism and cerebral palsy. Felix can rage like the devil, love like the most benevolent of spirits, and explore his world with spine tingling creativity and determination. Knowing him has deepened my understanding of art, science, nonverbal communications, muscles,…View more
My family story is a Chinese box tale of learning disabilities…View more
I have a MSW and MFA in Creative Writing. I have been trying to write about the convoluted illnesses and disabilities in my family including my (totally unintended and thank you for allowing me to know I am not the only parent who would not have children if I could see the future) two sets of twins. I have so much and am…