My Life When Jenny McCarthy Writes A Book On Autism

by beagooddad on September 21, 2007

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Jenny McCarthy has a new book that talks about her son’s autism.  Whenever anybody famous gets a big book deal they are all over the news to help promote it.

So this morning, I found this article talking about how great her boyfriend Jim Carrey is at being around her autistic son because of how good Jim is at listening.  Yet another reason to like Jim Carrey.  Another interesting tidbit toward the bottom of that article is that even though he started asking questions about her son right away that she didn’t introduce her son to him for a few months.  The article almost makes it sound like she didn’t want to deal with her son’s autism in this new relationship but I’ve known single parents that kept their kids away from their new boyfriend/girlfriend because they didn’t want their kid to get attached to the new person only to have them disappear a few months later.

Then later tonight, she was on 20/20 talking about her son’s autism.  This is when one of BeAGoodMom’s aunts called to tell us that she was on TV.  By the time we switched on the show, she was finishing up.  Her aunt called back and talked to BeAGoodMom for a little while.

The topic of gluten free diets came up.  Apparently that is one of the things McCarthy does with her son.  We don’t do anything like that for Pookie.

Here is where things get difficult with something like autism.  There are a ton of different treatments and methods and beliefs about how to handle raising a child with autism.  And I would be willing to bet that almost all of them work for some people.  And I also guarantee that those same treatments will not work with another child.

We constantly keep track of Pookie’s progress and are constantly noticing real progress.  Just yesterday, Pookie tracked down BeAGoodMom in the yard because he wanted to take her to the side of the house to show her the little bunny he found over there.  She didn’t go right away and Pookie took the time to explain why he wanted her to come.  That’s pretty cool.  He saw something interesting and wanted to share it with somebody else.  That’s social interaction with him using language to express his desires.

We are seeing a million of these little improvements that add up to huge changes over time.  The boy that is walking around our house right now is not the same boy that came home on the bus on the last day of school a few months back.

As long as we are seeing the progressions, there is very little chance of us dramatically changing the things that we are doing.  They are working.  They are not magic bullets the change everything overnight but they are working.

But, there are a lot of things out there that we don’t know a ton about and as autism gets more and more exposure in the media, relatives and friends are mentioning things they hear to us.  I love this.  It helps provide a comfortable way for people that are not regularly around Pookie to talk to us about autism.  We can then explain why we do or do not do what they heard in the news.  We can also learn about new things they have heard that we might not have heard about yet.

As painful as it might be for BeAGoodMom and me to watch some of these specials or read some of these books, media exposure is good for autism and Pookie in the long run.  The more society hears, the less ignorance will be out there.  The less ignorance, the more comfortable people will be trying to engage Pookie in a conversation or play a game with him or just tickle him when he walks by.  The more people that interact with Pookie, the more times he will get drawn into interactions with a greater variety of people which is going to help him.

Ten years ago, who would have predicted that Jenny McCarthy would write a book that would help me and my child.

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