Wednesday, November 27, 2013

The Good Mother Myth

The Good Mother Myth: Tearing It Down One Story at a TimeThe Good Mother Myth: Tearing It Down One Story at a Time by Avital Norman Nathman
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

The good mother does not exist. Well not the image of the good mother society portrays anyways. This is a group of short stories from real moms who face real issues and make real mistakes. They are the good mothers. Mothers today need to let go of the perfect myth. The stories in this book deal with food allergies, autism, losing custody, and adoption to name a few. This would be the book to buy the expecting mother since it shows real life and real people.

View all my reviews

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

The Email from A$

I received a email from A$ today it said: My response follows.

Email I just received from A$. Have not formulated. Response yet.

November 13, 2013 ACTION ALERT!


Right now, advocates are gathering in Washington, DC at our AS2DC event. We need your help back home, beyond the Beltway, to make some noise on Capitol Hill tomorrow, Thursday, November 14.

Today, we invite you to tune in to the #AS2DC events webcast here starting at 9 am EST. Hear from national political leaders, meet our Advocacy Team and learn more about our mission from science to adult housing to health insurance coverage.

You won’t want to miss it!

Here is How YOU Can Speak Up!

Have you signed our petition asking President Obama & Congress to develop a national plan to address improved access to healthcare and services, as well as increase research funding? If not, sign here.
Remember to ask your friends to help on Facebook and Twitter!

2) TOMORROW: CALL YOUR SENATORS & REPRESENTATIVE BETWEEN 8:30 AM EST AND NOON! Our advocates will be up on the Hill bright and early so get those phones ringing ahead of them!

Call Your Senators Here: Sen.

And Your U.S. Representative Here:

Say something in a polite voice like this:

“Hi! My name is [full name] and I am a constituent of Senator/Congressmember [LAST NAME]. An advocate with Autism Speaks will be stopping by your office today to say hello and bring you a packet of information. We are asking you to be a leader on the Hill for our community and develop a national plan to address autism. Thank you for all you do and have a great day!”

Here is a pre-written email that explains our federal agenda to your political leaders. Please consider including a quick paragraph about why this is important to you, then press send. You can send your email here.

We work hard to make advocacy as easy as 1, 2, 3. Working together, we can make a difference! But we need an army of advocates, just like you, to make that happen.

Thanks for all you do to make the world a better place for all of our families living with autism.

Happy dialing and emailing!

Director of Grassroots Advocacy
Autism Speaks

My response: 


I'm sorry but I cannot get behind this issue. Well not in the way autism speaks would like. While I agree that we need to have a conversation about autism I do not agree that fear should be used. Mrs. Wrights release prior to the start of this was offensive and belittling to autistic people.

There is no way that we can have a conversation about autism without accepting and including autistic adults at the table. 

Mrs. Wright makes autism out to be evil and a thief. She even went as far to say children are missing. That families are destroyed and parents are weary. The fear mongering has to stop. The fear hurts my child. It hurts his future because the general public fears autism.

Let me tell you about my autism. My children are not lost, they are not missing, autism has not stolen them. They're amazing, creative, thoughtful people. People! My children are people not some evil monster to be feared and avoided.  Then there is myself. I was never stolen, I am not evil. You know what I am. I am a mother, a wife, a nurse and medic (by training). I have gone to college, gotten married, lived alone, and raised children. I guess that is not the story you want to show. You only want to show the bad never the positive. 

Autism is a spectrum and autism speaks should know this yet they only focus on the worst of the worst. All the ads are awful and depressing. They say kids have no future.  You use words such as lost, stolen, and trapped. I know many autistic adults all over the spectrum and you know what they do have a future. They have lives, jobs, children. They are students, teachers, and working professionals. They are a asset to society not a drain. When you call someone a drain on society you are talking about someone's child, parent, spouse, or friend. You are talking about human beings and every human on this earth no matter their strengths or weaknesses has a place and adds to our society.

As for families breaking up studies have shown (Kennedy Kreiger just released one) this is not true. The divorce rate of families with autism is no more than families without. So that statement that I see repeatedly made is false. 

When autistics are openly invited to the table and the tone changes to a more positive one I will be more than happy to help but until then my answer will be no. 

Thank you,

(I removed names and phone numbers from the orginal email for privacy.)

Monday, November 4, 2013

Pitfalls of Writing

Writing is really good for a lot of people. It has a lot of benefits  Such as getting feelings out, sending a message when you cannot talk, documenting purposes, etc.

There are also some pitfalls.  One of the biggest ones is tone. It's hard to get the tone across a lot of times. This is typically where issues come up. Person A writes something and it is like their baby. They are protective of it. Person B makes a comment, sometimes the differing point of view not intending to attack but person A takes it as a attack. The other thing that happens is person c comes along, reads persons a's writing and complelty reads it wrong and feels attacked or put down themselves.  World war three breaks out online because of a simple misunderstanding somewhere.  Next thing you know all three people are accusing each other of attacking.

In most of these cases if the same interactions had happened face to face the issues would not happen. When someone writes something they are subject to their readers moods and interpretation. Sometimes we get it right and it comes across great. Sometimes though things we write just snowball into huge issues that should have never happened.  Readers may not understand the moods and issues going on in the writers life so they may read it wrong.

Someone writing something snarky and sarcastic can be seen as being rude and bitchy even though they were trying to be funny.  Or someone writes something meaning to be really serious and it's taken as a joke.

When you write doesn't matter if it is a blog, email, book, or article; you set yourself up for public comment. People are not all going to see your work how you intended it to be seen. They will not agree with you all the time. Sometimes they just won't like it. That's life. They may comment just out of frustration over things that don't even apply to you or your writting. You just get to be the lucky one they lash out on.  Not all comments will be 100% on your side. You can do one of two things when it is the opposite opinion, start a discussion or go on the attack.

By no means do I think anyone should just sit back and take the abuse. Really there are some really abusive people out there who get off on riling people up. I just mean that sometimes we need to step back and look at what is being said, who is saying it, and maybe ask questions rather than automatically go into defensive mode at attack back.

Now whoever comes up with tone fonts first will be a rich person. Someone get on that I need a sarcasm font.