The website Autism After 16 is carrying an incredibly poignant piece today from Liane Kupferberg Carter, a mother, journalist and activist, about how she still can’t get used to how people look at her son, who has autism and epilepsy.
Welcome to Autism Awareness Month, she writes in a reflection inspired by a series of upsetting incidents in a doctor’s office waiting room:
Yes, it’s April again, that cruelest month. The one where everyone talks a good game about Autism Awareness.
But what I’m most acutely aware of today is how people look at him. Still. After all those blue light bulbs and puzzle piece car magnets and T-shirts and rubber bracelets. I’m painfully aware of the stares. And the trying-not-to stares. I don’t know if Mickey notices, but I do. The way they look at my son. It pierces my armor, slicing straight to the heart.
Maybe they’re just staring because people do that. Anything out of the ordinary catches the eye; it’s a primitive itch. Twenty years ago, I might have looked too.
I don’t want to care so much that they stare.
But I do.
Read the rest here at http://www.autismafter16.com/article/04-16-2013/way-you-look-him-1
Liane, it’s totally understandable that you are feeling a bit cynical about Autism Awareness Month, but I can say that you definitely raised my awareness with this post, and I’d bet I’m not the only one.