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"I am the Mom Dr. Laura Talked to Friday, July 30, 1999"

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Dear FEAT:

It is about 4:30 a.m. and I can't sleep thinking about the call "I" made to Dr. Laura today.

I decided to come down stairs and check my email. I couldn't believe my eyes.

Actually my husband and I both did not trust my parents motives for scheduling a party at a fine resturant when they know how difficult it has been for us the past ten weeks. Why not a park in the desert so we could relax and the whole family could be there!

Unfortunately, most people who do not have someone they love as much as we love our presious autistic boy, can't understand. They see them as a waste of time.

Dr. Laura said that my other two Normal children can make a difference in this world where there is no way to know if Josh ever could. What I know is that we are all God's children and everyone of us - even Josh - makes a difference in this world. I see him touch perfect strangers hearts who make a connection with him. They have been forever changed! Also, what she doesn't understand is how sick Josh is and what parent would not do everything they could even if others suffer, to help a sick child.

We are very good about taking time individually with all our children and I want to be a role model for my two normal children - I want them to see I will always be there for "all" of them and would never abandon them because things got alittle tough.

Unfortunately, I knew Dr. Laura would never understand this and did not have the energy to deal with it or get into it with her. Besides, I was blubbering.

We are now getting Josh's behavior under control with the help of the great parents on the lists I am on - GFCF kids, Secretin Support and the Gut Group.

I didn't buy a dress and still don't know if we'll go, but I now know that unfortunately, only those of us who love so deeply someone with autism can appreciate what we go thru and can give us the support we need. It has been a hard 10 weeks, but dumping Josh never entered my mind.

What kind of a role model would I be to my children and how safe would they feel if "when the going gets tough, get rid of him" was my attitude. What kind of people would they grow up to be if this was our attitude! They love their brother so much and what he has done to touch their lives is precious.

Don't worry about me or my family. We are strong and united and now know to only ask other parents of children with autism such questions. It is sad to know that the majority of the people who are not involved with someone disabled feel very much like Dr. Laura. I think our life experiences help us to be richer and kinder, more compassionate people.

Before I had children, I was clueless to what was appropriate behavior in children. I was always saying "If I had a child, I would never let them behave like that etc . . . Then I had children and was humbled!!!

Many people will not be blessed with the gift of an autistic child or any child with a disability and most people just don't get it. We are the lucky ones and I feel so bless to have such awesome people helping us help "our family".

God Bless and Guide us all,

Denise

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