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“Curing” Autism

“Curing” Autism

For years I have wondered why people wanted to “cure” autism as if that was a possibility. It is a lifelong, genetic disability with no cure. I feel like there are so many people out there who think there is a magic pill that we could take that would magically make autism go away forever. While most autistic people would probably prefer that, I feel content living my life as it is. The way it wires my brain is a bit different than the way it may wire someone else’s. The complexities are never the same across the spectrum. One cannot fit a square box into a circle no matter how hard one may try. It is seemingly impossible and yet many people try to do just that.

There was a movie I have watched a few years ago called “X-Men: Last Stand” and it deals heavily with this topic overall. Many people want to find a cure for all their ailments and issues. I understand that reasoning as they have lives that they would like to get back to or would like to “fit in”. I remember the opening scene with the mutants going to get the medicine that would transform them into “normal” humans afterwards. It was an odd feeling and recall when I had initially seen it, I was so hurt. The fact that the mutants stood for something that didn’t fit the “mold of societal standards” stood out to me. While many of the people stood out and had abilities that made them outcasts. It is frustrating to deal with overall no matter how functioning you seem to be.

At the beginning, I felt for one of the characters who didn’t want to have the ability and wanted to fit in with society so badly. Like the character, I learned to accept that while I was different, I still had to find ways to blend in. I know many people who took finding out their disability hard and wanted not to have it. We cannot choose the cards we are dealt just as much as the next person. With understanding and time, we may be able to make that bad hand into something worthwhile. The river has yet to show us what is possible for us to reach. Our hand may switch into a good hand while seeming like a bad one to anyone outside. Like an old song goes, “You gotta know when to hold ‘em, know when to fold ‘em.”

While there is no cure for autism, the best thing to do is to figure out what tools they need to improve their future. Finding therapy, live-in support, or anything that might help them succeed later. Their future is as bright as we allow it to be, and I hope they are as independent as they can be for themselves. Teaching them the skills they need earlier on and finding ways to help them understand what it is they may need help with is a step in the right direction. The roads we take may not always converge but allowing them to find their own path is to discover a road less traveled.

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