Sunday, March 29, 2009


To date, I haven’t written anything about the Sky Walker case. It’s been hard to know what to say; there are so many questions and so few answers. The whole situation is tragic on so many levels.

Now I feel a little guilty for not writing sooner about a mother and son who are both victims. (For a great explanation of what I mean, see this recent post by Kim Stagliano at HuffPo.) I don’t feel ashamed for ignoring the true tragedy, but I cannot deny not speaking out sooner, and that’s to my discredit.

Recently, Age of Autism posted the comments of Sondra Williams. For those unfamiliar with her, Ms. Williams is an adult on the autism spectrum. For far too long, however, she was diagnosed as being mentally ill, and was subjected to a torture of institutionalization and medication. She now takes to task ⎯ and properly so ⎯ all of us in the on-line autism community (whether we be in the cure or ND side of things) who simply didn’t want to face this situation squarely:
. . . So this story itself is of making me quite ill but what is of making me more ill is the way much on the various list turn their backs away from such stories, as if wishing it away but this could be of any of our sons, and how would we be to have felt if those in the autism community turned of their backs to our child in such cases and left of him vulnerable to the systems.

It sickens me to know of the heart of so many might have of compassion but not willing to discuss or be of proactive to this.

And Ms. Williams personal story carries a message for those who deny a connection between what happened and Sky’s condition: that is, to those who think all autism represents nothing more than a different point of view:
Autism is of so many things but often only to those who are of much higher functioning and or Asperger’s is it just a different frame of mind, but to me it has been of my hell much of life……the only things life powerfully teached me was the humans were to be avoided because they would cause of me great harm. My life grew up in mental wards designed for adults with mental illnesses and drug addictions and so it left me vulnerable to that situation and not appropriate for a child, Because of being of a female and also reacting to much abuse and neglect my presentation was of intermeshed and most were of not looking at autism in females so was of misdx much years much much year. And finally correctly dx with autism spectrum in 2001 and confirmed by 3 psychologist and 3 psychiatrist of autism. Not asperger’s type.

After the Katie McCarron murder, many in the cure community were rightly chastised for showing greater sympathy to Katie’s mother than to the victim. Some of the loudest of those accusers now seem to be oddly devoid of sympathy for anyone in the present tragedy. And that’s just wrong, as Ms. Williams points out:
Please do not let of them treat of him this way. Hims mother can in no way ever rest in a peaceful fashion as long as he is of not well. He is of being punished enough by removal of the home, not having hims main source of love and care being there for him, he has no awareness of where she is or why she is not coming and why he cant go home to the only place were all of hims life is. 

The sad is when one looks at the parents who murder their children of disabilities they are of often given less punishment towards them when they killed with intent and he not having the ability to be aware and did not do anything with intent is of punished by far more harshly.

Please read the complete post here. The tonight, say a prayer for both Gertrude Steuernagel and Sky Walker.


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