A sassy, crafty mama bird from Los Angeles
raising a very sweet little girl with Autism
and a new baby boy in the Midwest... and other stuff, too.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

I'm no expert, BUT...

There's this thing in the news: The Lancet, an prominent British Medical Journal, which in 1998 published a paper showing a connection between vaccines (mostly the MMR) and Autism, has retracted the paper, stating that the study was flawed. In the past 24 hours since this news item was published and made its way around the interwebs, I've been inundated with people asking me what I think. Well, I don't totally know what I think. I mean, let me be clear here: I am NOT an expert on Autism, vaccines, biomedical treatments, etc.  Yes, my child has Autism. No, I don't believe that vaccines caused MY child's Autism, but I do think there needs to be some vaccine reform. I am not comfortable with the American Academy of Pediatrics' current vaccine guidelines. I believe it's too much, too soon. I believe that one size does NOT fit all. I think we, as parents, need to do more, better research into what we put into our kids and when. I don't let my kid drink coffee, coke, or eat cake and cookies for breakfast. I care about what goes into my kid (whose system is already weakened) and I act accordingly.

So, I don't know if vaccines cause Autism. I don't know what does. I think my kid's system is fucked up so I am helping to restore it and heal it. Yes, I use some unconventional means which some people think are crazy. I mean, I've called it voodoo myself. But, I've gotten to this point of unconventional means because the conventional ones haven't been enough (I still do all those things, I have just added other things to the mix as well).

I have found that the people who are most passionate about the "crazy" parents doing this "crazy" shit to heal their kids are those whose kids are not affected by Autism. The ones whose kids have been affected, seem to have been helped by conventional means alone. Baruch Hashem for them. Seriously. They are the very lucky ones. That's not the story for every family. Many families have tried those straight-ahead methods: therapies, early intervention services, etc, but they're not enough for all kids. It hasn't been enough for mine. So, I'm going to do everything I can to help my kiddo. Not just for her, but for me; and not just for me, but for her. I've seen so so so many families whose kids are so affected by Autism and they need more than speech therapy and occupational therapy. Yes, I think some of this biomedical shit is crazy, but it's crazier to let our kids remain sick. Just because one thing doesn't work doesn't mean we're going to throw up our arms and say "oh well." No, we're going to fight like fucking maniacs to help and heal our kids. If you have 'typical' kids and don't 'get it' like I get it, just trust me, you would too.

Anyway, here's the bottom line: I don't know if vaccines cause Autism. I applaud and encourage every researcher seeking the causes and cures for Autism- and you should too.

Okay, here are a couple links to some posts I've written in the past on the above topics. Enjoy.

In The Trenches of Autism
I do voodoo
Green Our Vaccines

If you disagree with me, that's fine. But don't get all crazy balls on me. I'm tired, sensitive, kinda vulnerable, and I've been beaten down by Autism. By the way, I feel like I need to go watch Jersey Shore or something to balance out all this heavy shit. Here I come, Snookie and The Situation!!


Piscesgirl said...

HAHAHA, You had me right at your side,in how we will fight to the death to figure out the "hoodoo" of autism... I was right there with you. up until Jersey shore! Anything but that! You are doing great with your little bird! I think you probably inspire more people then you know of!

Dani G said...

Thanks so much for the kind words, Piscesgirl. I really do appreciate it. Sometimes this Autism stuff gets to be too heavy and I need something light to balance it out. What's lighter and dumber that Jersey Shore?!! No brain needed to watch! HA!

Piscesgirl said...

You are right. It's just a bad example of TV though. Your also right about the daunting job of living in the day to day with autism. It does get to be alot some days. I am convinced that is why the alcohol industry is doing so well at present!

Joan Cutler said...

Nice job Danielle! You are a warrior and your adorable little girl is one lucky lady. I'm in it with you - let me know of any fund raisers, etc... that you hear about. Service, service, service...right?

xoxo Joan

My name is Erin. said...

I agree with it all, too. Like I've said before, I sometimes wonder if we're doing enough. I guess I've followed my instincts up until now and I think we're ok right now, but some things could be changing for us pretty soon.

You're so right about people with typical kids being the first to call us crazy. I read a comment on an online article not long ago that said something like, "Autism is just the new ADD. Every other kids got it, just so the industry can make money off of them." Clearly written by someone who hasn't interacted one on one with someone affected by either. My brother has ADD (nothing like Autism, thank you very much) and even if a few kids' parents pumped them full of sugar and then put them on Ritalin, I'm thankful for the help my brother received. And I'm thankful for the help my kid is getting and I'd never begrudge someone else doing all they can to make sure their kids has a fair chance in this world. What the fuck do the naysayers know anyway?! : ) XO

My name is Erin. said...

Oh, and Jersey Shore may not require a brain to watch, but I do believe it sucks the brain cells straight out of my head. OMG! And how the hell do they get to go to the freakin' Grammy's? Idiots.

JustMom420zaks said...

I'm all for ANY ideas that may help with this autism mess. Voodoo, hoodoo or otherwise. People seem to be afraid to post what little home-solutions, diets, non-traditional therapies that they use that works for them, for fear the community will reject their claims.
I'm looking into this whole egg/wheat/gluten thing, and can find almost NO information because the greater consensus thinks it's BS. Just because there isn't thousands of studies backing it up.

JennieB said...

Dani, I completely respect you and what you are doing for your daughter. I do think, however, that vaccinations are a public health obligation. I hope researchers do find what combination of factors (genetic & environmental) is causing a rise in autism rates. But I fear the continued focus on vaccines, which has been studied repeatedly, is taking away time and resources from other research.

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