An Autistic surviving in a literary hostile world.
As a writer I always have my ear to the ground for a story, as an autistic mother to autistic children my heart always craves that one day we will have acceptance.
I’ve been aware of this book on Amazon for a while but never really paid any attention to it, but whilst scrolling on my newsfeed on Facebook a friend who is also autistic had posted a link to it begging for no more hate against autistics.
Opening the link I read on and the need ignited in me to write about what I had found.
I decided to look further in to it, though the title is self explanatory about how this man apparently feels about his two autistic children.
The book I speak of is entitled ‘I wish my kids had Cancer: A family surviving the Autism epidemic’, by Michael Alan. A man who I believe to be Neurotypical. It has been on the shelves available for sale since the year 2008.
Reading through I’m sure that this man would use the explanation that Cancer may be treatable, yet I had to ponder whether he has contemplated the thought that one day his children may read what he has written. That their father wrote a book professing the desire that his children would develop a disease that claims approximately eight million lives a year rather than them be Autistic.
For anyone who has seen their loved ones struck down with Cancer and witnessed them going through treatments, for those who have lost someone to Cancer or indeed is a Cancer survivor I feel this is a massive insult. It trivialises their experiences and for us as Autistics it portrays us as so undesirable to have in a family that this man has proclaimed his children would be better off with Cancer then being Autistic!
As someone who has watched her son go through Chemotherapy treatment I will confirm that Chemotherapy gives dreadful side affects intense nausea and fatigue not to mention hair loss. Yet he would rather his child go through this then be their neurodiverse selves.
Under the link is a name, Sara Hickman. A singer who after being contacted by Michael Alan wrote a song about his experiences. Upon going on YouTube and listening to ‘State of emergency’ I came away feeling horrified and hurt.
It has the lyrics “ Full of toxins, shooting up with mercury, believing governments lies” and intones she will “ never be happy again.”
We as Autistics must wonder how we will ever gain and implement acceptance in society when such despicable material exists against us. This sort of propaganda spreads fear and ignorance, while the song appears to all intents to be an anti vax anthem.
I ask that you as parents choose to read books by actual Autistics and not fall for the category of pity party parent books I have seen more frequently for sale online and in book shops.
Read about what your child can and may with support do rather then focusing on what they cannot do.