I have a 19 year old non verbal autistic son who head bangs, so I was delighted when I was told of your comic strip as I thought what a great way to raise the profile of autism.
So I was very sad to read in today’s strip that in a perfect world Seth would be fine.
Autism is fine! My son is fine, I love every autistic inch of him. And im sure autistic people themselves who read this would be very upset.
Its the unaccepting world that isn’t fine.
I and many other parents work very hard to try and raise awareness in a positive way. Couldn’t you use your gift as a comic strip writer to help people to see that the many autistic kids and adults are wonderful and loved for who they are?
And this was Karen's prompt reply;
You make a good point. I certainly didn't mean to make anyone with autism feel badly about themselves. I have a 12 year old severely autistic son, and I have a different perspective than yours. I love him with all my heart, but if I could take his autism away tomorrow I would do it. My son is not fine the way he is. His quality of life is very low, so in my perfect world, my son would be healed of autism. I realize this is never going to happen, and we love and accept him as he is right now, but this doesn't change my feelings.
There is a split in the autism community about this, as you must know. Some folks agree more with you, and some more with me. However, I can only write my comic strip from my own point of view, which is, of course, what I did here.
I am not saying all autism spectrum disorders are bad. I have a few family members with Aspergers and they are not disabled, in fact they seem to have many wonderful gifts. I also know a few high functioning autistic people and I feel about them the same way. It's not a bad way to be, it's just a different way to be. Perfectly fine. But low-functioning autism is terrible, not to put too fine of a point on it.
I'm all for raising awareness in a positive way though, and I can certainly get behind that. In fact, that is my entire point for putting autism in my strip in the first place. I think we'll have to agree to disagree about this issue. Your son sounds very lucky to have such a loving mother.
Whilst surfing for Karen’s email I also came across this discussion about the strip.