Reaching The Autistic Through Disney

by Christopher Paul on March 8, 2014

Ron Suskind’s son, Owen, is regressive autistic; he was a normal child until around three when he “vanished”. For years the Suskinds tried to reach Owen and, over time, discovered Disney animated movies as the way to reach him — and for Owen to express himself. Of the story, this passage stuck with m the most:

There’s a reason — a good-enough reason — that each autistic person has embraced a particular interest. Find that reason, and you will find them, hiding in there, and maybe get a glimpse of their underlying capacities. In our experience, we found that showing authentic interest will help them feel dignity and impel them to show you more, complete with maps and navigational tools that may help to guide their development, their growth. Revealed capability, in turn, may lead to a better understanding of what’s possible in the lives of many people who are challenged.

There are plenty of other good paragraphs I could have quoted but that seems to resonate with me for some reason. Perhaps it’s hopeful that we may better understand what causes autism and be better equipped to connect with those who have lost their outer voice.

via The Feature

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