Thursday, January 17, 2008

Autism And Anger

When I first started getting up to speed with Autism Spectrum issues, I was of course fascinated by the "refrigerator mother" theory. In it's original context, the doctors started noticing that the parents of the autistic children seemed somehow "distant". The most the description went on the more I realized they may have actually been observing Asperger's traits in the parents and, yes, it would tend to make sense that parents with Asperger's traits might have a greater liklihood of having autistic chidren.

Autism Spectrum disorders - even those usually considered "high functioning" - generally have an entire grocery cart full of traits - repetitive motions, difficulty making eye contact, sensitivity to loud noises, etc. Each may be present in differing degrees in each affected person, but I've sometimes noticed some of my neurotypical friends to be most fascinated with the anger.

Whilst having a conversation with a friend of mine about autism traits, I happened to remember I had a "control case" - a son of a friend of mine who was born with a neurological disorder that affects throat muscle control. The young man has always been unable to speak and also has suffered a great deal of difficulty eating and other functions involving that area of his throat. He also cannot sign. The area of his brain responsible for symbolic communication appears to be utterly non-functioning. However, he walks, runs, plays, makes eye contact, and seems - most of the time anyway - to be a generally happy kid.

This is QUITE in context to many with Autism and Asperger's I have known, who, in addition to having moderate to severe communications issues, also are sometimes filled with debilitating anxiety often elevating to the level of abject rage.

The anxiety even oozes from the pores of Temple Grandin. Now she obviously had a supporting family who managed to point her in the direction of developing ways to cope - and turned those coping mechanisms into a career.

Of late, however, I have discovered someone who might allow one to pose the hypothesis that the RAGE element of the autism spectrum disorders is quite independent and can occur in someone who is otherwise neurotypical.

You see, there's this fellow who calls himself Foresam who has this blog called Hating Autism that shows up on my autism blog searches from time to time.

His latest diatribe seems to be about someone named Lenny Schafer, who, if I'm making this out correctly, ran a Yahoo Group on the subject of the theory that autism is caused by mercury poisoning in vaccines. If I'm making this out correctly, Lenny Schafer has abandoned this endeavor.

Now, quite in the style of our good friend Joy Rolland, Foresam has described these events as Lenny Schafer allowing the "government to sodomize him in public for the rest of his life."

Now we know what happened to the last guy who went around talking about his "sodomite friends".

Of course I have been trying to get a handle on Foresam's posts for the better part of six months now.

If I'm making this out correctly, he has an autistic child named Sam who he believes is autistic due to the thimerosal used in vaccines Sam received.

Also, if I'm making this out correctly, his child has a SEVERE form of autism and he is MAD AS HELL about it. So much so that he will spew hate upon just about anyone who has the slightest different viewpoint.

He puts me a bit in mind of the 9/11 Conspiracy Nuts and the maniacs who are so damn rude that they end up getting decked by Buzz Aldrin.

It may very well be environmental mercury contamination that has contributed to the upswing in autism cases. But somehow I'm thinking there just isn't enough in the vaccines.

In any event, I'm pretty sure the talk of sodomizing and calling people "dumb bastards" isn't likely to lend much credibility to your cause.

As a matter of fact, if this theory that I just formed in my head is right ... :) ... it sounds as though Foresam himself may be suffering from a form of autism and might benefit from a nice, long series of "clicker" therapy sessions.

What do you all think?



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