|Your opinion doesn't count because you're high functioning
||[Sep. 16th, 2013|09:58 pm]
I like to read articles on the Huffington Post website. One such article I read recently was on "Things not to say to a child-free woman." The comments to the article turned into a debate, with some people wondering why on earth anyone could possibly choose to not have children.|
One commenter said that one reason to not have children is the fact that you have a 1 in 88 chance of having a child with autism. I replied to that by saying, "I'm autistic. Are you saying I should not have been born?"
The commenter replied (note: this is not verbatim) "I'm assuming from the fact that you are reading and commenting here that you are Asperger's or otherwise high-functioning on the ASD spectrum. Therefore you don't know what it's like to be severely autistic and unable to care for yourself."
This happens to me a lot when I participate in discussions about autism. "You're high functioning, so you don't know what it's like for my child." "My child will never be like you, so you can't participate in this conversation."
First of all, you have absolutely no idea how "functioning" I am. Autistic people of all abilities are able to type, including those who are classified as "low" functioning and those who do not live independently. Second, I am autistic, regardless of how well I do or do not "function." Third, you have no idea what your child will grow up to be like. Many children who are classified as "low-functioning" or "severely autistic" grow up to be very successful adults. There is at least one autistic kid whose mother was told he should be institutionalized who is now considered to be more intelligent than Einstein and is a university student at age 14.