If you were surfing around the internet lately, you may have read about a hate-filled anonymous letter a woman received from a neighbor regarding her autistic son. In the letter (which was shared here), the “author” complains about various things such as the “whaling” noises her son, Max, makes, uses very hurtful names, and basically write just a terrible, nasty letter. And since we like to share positive, uplifting stories from the autism community here, this letter is not something we would ideally like to highlight.
However, the mother that received this cruel letter, Karla Begley, took the much higher road and shared what her response would be to the person who wrote the letter. And this was certainly worth highlighting here for you. You can read the full response here, but here are some of our favorite parts:
Sometimes, kids come up to me and ask “Why does he talk funny?” The parents are embarrassed. But if the mom isn’t going to talk properly to a child, or teach him that kids with autism are not contagious, I will! It’s important to help kids understand and not be fearful from a young age.
People with special needs are people first. They have every right others do. Instead of glares, I wish people would give smiles. Instead of anger toward parents, I wish people would be more understanding.
Of course, we wonder about Max’s future, whether he will ever live alone or get married. What will be will be. Everyone has a place in the world. Some people are meant to hold big jobs. Some people make you happy and smile. Max brings pure joy and love. He has taught me to slow down and appreciate life, as seen through his eyes.
The community rallying around us has been amazing, the outpouring of support is awesome. It puts your faith back in humanity: Yes, people are generally good.
Well said, Karla! Don’t you wish everyone shared that same attitude!
Lynsey, Community Manager