Like many people with autism, I'm not doing well with background noise. My senses and brain can not separate it from other sounds. It's often so strong, if not stronger than what I'm trying to listen to. And the efforts that need to be made to try to deal with this problem while focusing often leave me disappointed and exhausted.
I'm experiencing this lately in terms of information, especially around the news that contains a terrible combination of anti-science or pseudoscience and autistic panic. Every time I see a story about the outbreak of measles, or a title like "False Science Makes Your Mother Blend Her Autistic Sons ̵
Then I have another kind of story that I still see: a largely underground phenomenon where parents use everything from turpentine to urine to "cure" the autism of their children. NBC News has recently published a report on the dangerous and very common practice of oral and anal administration of bleach treatment in children with autism. In March, the British Ad Monitoring Organization ordered 150 homeopaths to stop claiming they can cure autism by treatment by giving children up to 200 times the maximum recommended dose of vitamin C. Amazon recently stopped selling books that promote bleach as a treatment or aurism.
None of these news is a surprise to me. I was aware of autism-related conspiracy theories until I was officially aware that I was an autistic.
Anti-wax myths begin and spread online
Many of these myths thrive in the social era. Emma Dalmine, an autistic author with autistic children, has opened online groups dedicated to the fake treatments of autism in 2014, and has been working on them since then. These groups have been working under the radar for years, so it is difficult to trace their origin or how they have spread. But the treatment that most of them press – a formula of sodium chlorite, known as the "Miracle Mineral Solution," which produces chlorine dioxide when used according to the instructions – can be traced to The Miracle Miracle Solution of the 21st Century a book published by former scientist Jim Humble in 2006
Humble and his followers pushed MMS as a cure for everything from HIV to a common cold. Now a subgroup of desperate parents who have convinced that autism is caused by toxins or parasites, they believe they can cleanse their children from the autism by giving them MMS enema, forcing their decision to jerk or put it in the baby your bottles.
This news is not scary. The anti-vaccination situation worsened as I first wrote about the impact of traffic on autistic people four years ago. But the public awareness of anti-witch tales and fake autism heals.
Yet all this is complemented and contributes to the constant reminder that people are still ignorant and afraid of autism. This is painful on a personal level. To be constantly reminded that a part of the world would rather risk public health crises or the discharge of a funnel in their terrible childhood openings than having or loving someone like you can not help but weigh a man. But what really worries me is that innocent people are threatened and abused on the basis of what is a little more than a simple and alarming fiction. Autism that horrifies these parents and guardians is divorced from the realities of autistic life, as their methods are from the real science.
Autism is not a monstrous fate
When it is not cartoonish in broadcasts, largely produced by and for people without autism, such as The Big Bang Theory and autism is often characterized as a terrible way of life. We cost too much to raise. We are destroying marriages, even though the statistics about our alleged house demolition forces are compiled. Omnipedia-directed Autism Speaks in 2009 Alfonso Cuaron said that autism makes it "almost impossible for your family to easily visit a church, a birthday or a public park without struggle, without shame or pain" . as they were withdrawn, but moods remain.
If I have not lived an entire life with autism, I could be afraid of these constant messages of doom. How can we expect people to respond to the possibility of loving and caring for a person suffering from autism in a rational way when the stories that this world tells us about are irrational? Our society will not make any significant progress against anti-vaccinated or snake movements unless we change the way we talk about autism.
I'm not saying we have to make it a shiny PR campaign. People with autism can face significant challenges as a result of both our neurology and the lack of understanding and acceptance. We – and our carers for those who need them – are desperate for better service and more financial and emotional support to help us exist in a world that has not been built for people like us. Even the most privileged among us face a suicide nine times the total population.
Just because the autistic life can be tough does not mean it's worse than a death sentence. We have bad days, but we are good and neutral. We are human beings and our life has value. We must not prevent or eradicate at any cost; we need better services and better education than what we have now.
We are people, with all the complexity of the human experience that leads to, not with a rising boogie. To treat us as such may be a much more powerful weapon against conspiracy theories than any statistics.
Sara Kurcak is the author of autism from Toronto. Her first book "I overcome my autism and all I have is a bad anxiety disorder" comes out in April 2020
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