saying women shouldn’t be allowed to get abortions because they were the ones who had unprotected sex is like saying smokers shouldn’t receive treatment for lung cancer or drivers shouldn’t receive treatment in a car crash because they knew the risks when they got a driving license
Autism isn’t something a person has, or a “shell” that a person is trapped inside. There’s no normal child hidden behind the autism. Autism is a way of being. It is pervasive; it colors every experience, every sensation, perception, thought, emotion, and encounter, every aspect of existence. It is not possible to separate the autism from the person—and if it were possible, the person you’d have left would not be the same person you started with.
This is important, so take a moment to consider it: Autism is a way of being. It is not possible to separate the person from the autism.
Therefore, when parents say,
I wish my child did not have autism,
what they’re really saying is,
I wish the autistic child I have did not exist, and I had a different (non-autistic) child instead.
Read that again. This is what we hear when you mourn over our existence. This is what we hear when you pray for a cure. This is what we know, when you tell us of your fondest hopes and dreams for us: that your greatest wish is that one day we will cease to be, and strangers you can love will move in behind our faces.
What would it be like if the U.S. was war torn like Syria? A new video by international NGO Save the Children imagines just that, through the eyes of a young girl:
The disturbing video features shots of the girl as she goes about her normal life over the course of a year. The video begins and ends with the child celebrating her birthday. Between shots, we see how her life changes dramatically as war ravages her country.