Barbara Fischkin and PL Dialogue on Autism Continues

Barbara Fischkin, author and activist mother of an autistic son, and I continue to exchange thoughts on the subject of autism. The dialogue began with my response to a piece by Barbara on the Huffington Post in which she responded to a screed by a conservative cretin named, Mike Savage.

Here's Barbara's latest response to my most recent to her:

"First let me say that I welcome this dialogue. But actually what you are saying DOES NOT make sense. When our son was first diagnosed we spent a small fortune on play therapy and it did absolutely nothing. Dibs down the drain. In recent months three things have worked: A speech therapist who can do prompt therapy. (hard to find) A DAN protocols doctor, who is very important despite your skepticism. And excellent teachers. They all are vital and all work in tandem. Play therapy, though, is not what they do."

PL's response to BF's response:

I understand what you are saying, Barbara. The problem with "play therapy," or any kind of therapy, for that matter, which I'm sure you know, is that whatever the therapeutic technique or theory, in practice, it's only as good as the therapist and patient make it (and in the case of children, the parents must be included in that equation). Helping a child and his parents overcome autism is a tremendous undertaking, and I am not knocking the DAN protocols, occupational therapies, cognitive/behavioral methods, etc. By no means. (Clearly, I am an activist against chemo-therapy for most childhood conditions, though.)
I consider myself to be a "whatever-works" therapist, after thirty years of studying and using a wide variety of approaches for an array of different disorders and syndromes. My biggest concern here is with the big picture in addressing disorders like autism. From the broad-view perspective, to call theories on the etiology of autism that consider the emotional state of the parents prenatally, at birth and during the first 6 months of life as discredited, "DOES NOT make sense" to me. In fact, I would dare to incur further wrath from you by saying that such "compartmentalized thinking" is typical of the "Schizoid Character Structure, which I have written and taught about extensively.
We are all connected, Barbara, in the truest sense. The medical paradigm which separates human beings from nature, and from each other, or dares to presume that nature randomly screws up, and then requires fixing by us, is beyond hubristic. It is dangerous.
Looking into all of the connections, including the hardest ones to face emotionally and ego-wise, are often the very ones worth keeping on the table.
Thanks for the dialogue.

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