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"Because under what circumstances really do I not want to learn? Suspect circumstances, times when I feel threatened, but why? New knowledge is not, has never been, will never be, my enemy. I have to remind myself of this, because at times, it is not obvious."
YES. Thank you for writing this. Lots to consider.
There are lots of reasons those parents might have been shaking their heads at that hearing at that time. It is reasonable that some might want to say this person's testimony is not accurate to what I see in my child. Or that this person's testimony does not reflect my views. And they have the right to do so. I've seen some rhetoric by some self-advocates that that mock the challenges that some parents face. I checked out the NPR link and words like these make you question whether this self-advocate (Carley) could understand what my son's needs are:
Carley: "On the other extreme is "somebody who might have to wear adult diapers and maybe a head-restraining device. This is very hard for us to swallow," he says."
That pisses me off big time. Carley should remember that autistics can read and hear what he says.
But discussions like this have caused me to rethink everything I say around my son. My son understood much much more than I thought he could years ago. He can quote exact statements that people have said from the time he was 3 until now. Most of the quotes are not about him or autism, but just about life at that time.
I decided it doesn't harm me to assume that he understands everything I say. And so I only speak the words I hope he understands.