Culture of Misery (and how it contributed to Alex Spourdalakis’s death)

Posted: June 11, 2013 in Autism, Autistic rights, epidemic of fear, Neurodiversity, Parenting
Tags: , , , ,

This last weekend was the most joyful weekend I’ve had in my life. Family and friends came together to watch me and my best friend get married. My love drunk joy was quickly squashed by the horrifically sad and sickening news that a fourteen year old autistic boy was stabbed to death by his own mother.  

Right now, I can’t keep my food down — this makes me so sick. And what’s more horrifying, is how Alex was treated before his mother so viciously murdered him. To imagine what it must have been like to stare into the eyes of the person who is supposed to love and protect him only to die at the hands of her? I can’t understand why or how anyone could do this. It’s just beyond my comprehension.

Then I find out she was part of thisAge of Autism organization. She was a ‘cure-bee’, bought into their ideas of what they think autism is, with their messages of misery and suffering — instead of the gift that Autism can be; how people like me, my son, and my friends need to be ‘cured’ of it.

Alex did not suffer from autism. He suffered from the ignorance of others around him. He suffered from people who wanted to ‘control’ him. He suffered from people who refused to even attempt to understand and accept him. He was abused and tortured and neglected. Then in the end, the person who was supposed to protect him, took his life and in a very horrific way.

I can’t even tell you how infuriated I am. There’s NO excuse. NONE. Do not feel sorry for his mom! She is slime and deserves to be locked up for LIFE!!

I might add more to this post later, but in light of the fact that while I was starting a new life with my husband, a 14 yr. old boy was being viciously murdered by his mother. I have no words to describe my feelings at this moment. I can really only say that this culture of misery concerning autism must end!

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Comments
  1. kezziness says:

    Truly heartbreaking 😥 I agree with you. The misery culture surrounding Autism has to stop! I have shared this on my Facebook page and profile. I will link this to my blog too.

  2. eml2187 says:

    It makes me so sick, I can barely bring myself to think about it.

  3. Katie Dolan says:

    Yes, there is no excuse for what this mother did. However, I don’t like the part where you said, “Alex didn’t suffer from autism”. Your child might not suffer from autism. It depends on which end of the spectrum your child is on. Autism is a huge spectrum with many different symptoms. There are kids that do suffer from autism, unless of course a child punching themselves in the head all day or biting their hand until it is bloody and screaming is not suffering. Some of these kids do this all day long and can’t do anything else. Would you feel your child’s autism was a gift and not want to cure him if he was hurting himself all day long and couldn’t do anything else? Picture your child banging their head against the floor ALL day long and screaming. Is that a gift? Would you accept that happily? Of course you would want to cure him! No mother wants to see their child in pain every day! That is the thing that upsets me about this community. I acknowledge that autism can be a gift for kids that are higher functioning, why can’t anyone acknowledge the suffering that some kids with severe autism have and that it is not a gift for all kids. It is not fair for people to apply their experience of autism onto other parents since we all have different autism experiences depending on the severity of the autism.

    • Katie, I acknowledge that things can be tough. And there are behaviours that some kids do that need to be changed because it’s harmful. I don’t believe that it’s necessarily because they are in pain. They are extremely sensitive and are trying to communicate what it is that is wrong. Thing is, finding a way to communicate with them, when you figure out what it is that bothers them, much of the behaviors stop. there are medical issues that any kid autistic or not, can have and when someone can’t speak, they try to communicate in other ways. I really feel that some of these violent meltdowns are because of people not understanding what it is they are trying to say but can’t. I’ve known of kids like Alex, that when the parents and doctors find out the issues, etc. And when they listen and try to understand, these negative behaviors can be turned around. I really believe that. But thing is, it still gives no one, especially a parent to kill their child. Alex was a human being. He deserved better. I would recommend “Wretches and Jabberers” documentary for you. And also “Loving Lampposts”

    • Kiley Quinn says:

      My oldest daughter was much like that as an infant and toddler. There are many ways to meet sensory needs and communication deficits that can alleviate self injurious behaviors and they all should be tried before giving up hope. I have met many so-called “low functioning” individuals who are not self injurious and are rather cheerful despite difficulty or complete inability to communicate. The key differences I see are sensory needs being met and communication differences accommodated.

      We all absolutely agree that pain should be treated, digestive issues addressed, that self injury needs to be redirected–speaking as an autistic adult who spent a great deal of energy attempting to avoid banging my head and scratching myself during this stressful week. Fortunately my pain medicine and various deep pressure techniques helped.

  4. Big Ganga Photography says:

    All I could do was to stare blankly at the screen and envisage what Dantean horrors the poor child surely endured prior and during his horrific death. I’m not easily disturbed. Today I was. And angered beyond mention.

    I think I’ll go, and hug my son…

  5. Kristen says:

    Tough situation or whether or not the Autistic child is suffering. That does not give a parent a plausible enough reason to abuse, neglect and ultimately murder their child.

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