There is a major debate in the Autism community about medicating your child. While I am not a formal researcher nor claim to have a medical degree, my experience with this debate has been first hand.
Just recently, For the umpteenth time, unintentionally got into one such debate. I simply answered the question presented by another parent of a child with Autism. She asked, “Do you medicate Steve?”
I have now pondered this question for the past several days. Is that a fair yes or no question? This is really bothering me.
We in the community KNOW that if you know a child with Autism, you know ONE child with Autism. So can you ask such a blanket question and on top of it, is it okay to relay your disdain for the answer when it doesn’t agree with your feelings?
I do medicate my child. I do so not because he is Autistic. I do so not because I am a lazy parent and would like to make even a few hours of the day easier on myself, as some have suggested. I do so because for MY son who also has ADHD, it is the best thing for HIM.
I recognize that we got VERY lucky. The first medication we gave my son worked like a charm. No side effects, ample results. When he is on his medication he is still himself but he can hear better. He listens, he learns, he participates, he is MORE. Just MORE!
So yes, I medicate my child.
I also recognize that medication is not for EVERY child. I don’t know every child. I know MY child. I know a few children who have been through HELL trying to find the right medication (s). Cocktails of multiple drugs, dosing, stimulants by day, racing minds and bodies by night, are all regularly in the mix.
Much like the rest of the debates in this country I wish we could all just accept that another may have a different opinion than you do. That doesn’t make that person better or worse than you, just different.
Let’s keep trying to respect one another and not shut down the discussion simply because we do not agree.