Saturday, December 15, 2007

Again, all awareness is not good

We have your son. We will make sure he will no longer
be able to care for himself or interact socially as long as he lives.
— Autism

This is one of the six “ransom notes” that make up a public service campaign by the New York University Child Study Center to raise awareness of what Dr. Harold S. Koplewicz, the center’s founder and director, called “the silent public health epidemic of children’s mental illness.” The shocking billboards and posters are plastered all over New York.

The idea is to wake up parents, to shake them out of their supposed denial, and get them to bring their children in for treatment. Who do they think is in this denial? I'm well aware, as are the vast majority of parents who have children with autism, that my child has the disorder. We don't need a billboard to tell us! In fact, my experience, and the experience of almost every other parent I've talked to (and I've talked to many) is that it's been THE PARENTS trying to convince the DOCTORS that something 'isn't right' with our babies, not the other way around.

What I'd like to know is this: is New York University going to "rescue" my son from his so-called "kidnapper?" There is no cure for autism. As a parent, I have tried everything to help my child, and a rude smack across the head, such as this campaign is, doesn't help me or my child.

What's the point, then, other than shock value, for this campaign? Why load another pile of despair and hopelessness on parents who already fight every single day to stay positive and optimistic? If you want to work on awareness, work on making society aware. I'm already well-aware, believe me.


Maddy said...

Shock value as far as I can see.
Best wishes

This is my calling card or link"Whittereronautism"until blogger comments get themselves sorted out.

Casdok said...

Yes it is shocking.