What mentality do you think we should have parents of ...

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emax10000
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18 Feb 2015, 6:45 pm

... low functioning autistic kids, the type who will never be able to live independently and in the worst cases never even be able to take care of their own basic needs? I know that this is one of the most hotly contested topics about autism there is since the debate on how we should treat parents of low functioning autistic kids and what out attitudes should be.

I think it is extremely nuanced since I think that we need a ton of empathy and sympathy for what these parents are going through. I think that we should not protest when parents consider these kids impaired and disabled - because indeed they are - and not merely different, which unfortunately seems to be the position of some of the more militant autism activists. And I think we even need to be understanding of the viewpoint that if we know these kids are going to be severe, low functioning autistics that it is better to abort them, even if we do not agree with this at all.

But again, it has to be balanced out of course with the fact that choosing to raise low functioning kids, just like choosing to raise kids with Down's syndrome, should not be considered amoral either, as Richard Dawkins unfortunately implied at one point. Parents who view these kids as having less human value and being literally nothing more than a burden to the world and being useless, to the extent that parents exist, and combine it with a martyr parent complex I mentioned before, should be criticized frequently as well, again, to the extent such parents exist at all.

That is my view and I was wondering if the autistic community here agrees or feels I am missing something. This is possibly the easiest way there is to start a monstrous flame war on a forum about autism so I am trying to be as sensitive to all viewpoints as I can and will continue to do so but I was wondering what the position here is and if it has fundamentally changed in the last few years as discussions about autism have increased.



kraftiekortie
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18 Feb 2015, 6:47 pm

It's moot at this point. They can't tell whether a kid is going to be severely autistic in the womb.



emax10000
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18 Feb 2015, 7:32 pm

kraftiekortie wrote:
It's moot at this point. They can't tell whether a kid is going to be severely autistic in the womb.

I am just not sure that makes it entirely a moot point. There is still the whole point of the kind of attitude and viewpoints of parents who are struggling with low functioning kids should have. I have read of a subset of high functioning autistics who see all autistic people as simply being different and not impaired and railing against parents of low functioning kids and the OP was also about how to address that. So therefore it is not only about addressing what to do with unborn kids.

Furthermore, if medical technology advances enough we may not be that far off from a point where where can in at least some cases tell in the womb who is going to be severely autistic. Not saying it is necessarily the case, but technology is advancing at an exponentially rapid enough rate such that we cannot completely rule that out either in the future.



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18 Feb 2015, 7:57 pm

People should treat each other with mutual respect and compassion, maybe?

And possibly avoid fundamental violations of each others' human rights?



kraftiekortie
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18 Feb 2015, 8:07 pm

I would be against abortion in the case of suspected autism.

In the absence of another disorder which might CAUSE autism, I do not believe there will ever come a time when it can be determined, in the womb, whether an individual autistic child will exhibit severe, moderate, or mild symptoms.

I can understand, fully, the viewpoint of those parents of "low-functioning" autistic people who desire a "cure."



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18 Feb 2015, 8:33 pm

For people who think they know which ones to kill:
http://www.forbes.com/sites/alexknapp/2 ... anization/



guzzle
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18 Feb 2015, 8:35 pm

emax10000 wrote:
kraftiekortie wrote:
It's moot at this point. They can't tell whether a kid is going to be severely autistic in the womb.

I am just not sure that makes it entirely a moot point. There is still the whole point of the kind of attitude and viewpoints of parents who are struggling with low functioning kids should have. I have read of a subset of high functioning autistics who see all autistic people as simply being different and not impaired and railing against parents of low functioning kids and the OP was also about how to address that. So therefore it is not only about addressing what to do with unborn kids.

Furthermore, if medical technology advances enough we may not be that far off from a point where where can in at least some cases tell in the womb who is going to be severely autistic. Not saying it is necessarily the case, but technology is advancing at an exponentially rapid enough rate such that we cannot completely rule that out either in the future.


In ethics there is no right or wrong. And that is what you are addressing, the ethics of it.
Should premature 24-weeks old babies be kept alive?
Truth is many are being kept alive and the majority of those are severely disabled for the rest of their days.
Even to the point that some parents wished they had never kept them alive to start with.
Because what will happen to them after they die?

Anyway, that was my eye opener to ethics many years ago.
Not having read your "subset of high functioning autistics who see all autistic people as simply being different and not impaired and railing against parents of low functioning kids" I have no comment on that one.
Beyond that there's nutters in all camps.

And you'll probably think me one for paying any heed to the chinese doctor who told me DD was born with a wood imbalance but that's OK. It takes one to know one :mrgreen:



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18 Feb 2015, 8:48 pm

guzzle wrote:
Should premature 24-weeks old babies be kept alive?
Truth is many are being kept alive and the majority of those are severely disabled for the rest of their days.
Even to the point that some parents wished they had never kept them alive to start with.
Because what will happen to them after they die?


This may have been true in the past (that the majority of these kids are severely disabled), but I don't think it is anymore. I know three kids born at 24 weeks. They all were in the NICU for several weeks, but none of them are severely disabled. Two of them, you would never know there ever was an issue. One of them was on a feeding tube for quite awhile, and has some developmental delays- but not at all severe.



guzzle
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18 Feb 2015, 9:01 pm

Fitzi wrote:
guzzle wrote:
Should premature 24-weeks old babies be kept alive?
Truth is many are being kept alive and the majority of those are severely disabled for the rest of their days.
Even to the point that some parents wished they had never kept them alive to start with.
Because what will happen to them after they die?


This may have been true in the past (that the majority of these kids are severely disabled), but I don't think it is anymore. I know three kids born at 24 weeks. They all were in the NICU for several weeks, but none of them are severely disabled. Two of them, you would never know there ever was an issue. One of them was on a feeding tube for quite awhile, and has some developmental delays- but not at all severe.


Was sometime mid-90's I wrote the essay. The main issue was the fact that the lungs were underdeveloped at that age so yes, the technology probably has improved to aid their breathing in the first few hours of life.
Only thing that really stands me by from it is that when it comes to ethics there simply is no right or wrong.
I think it's a personal choice and only ego-trippers have a need to discuss right and wrong beyond an academic level as far as I'm concerned :evil:
Had this come up in PPR I would not even have bothered because on that level it's outside my interest...