To the People Who Choose to See, “Music”

I want to take a minute to write to you. I have hesitated to write on this topic but I figured I should as I am sure no matter if you planned to see the movie “Music” before, with all the controversy now, it has peeked your interest. I can’t blame you. If I didn’t know autism my interest would be peaked too.

When the chatter initially began I started to research it a bit but honestly, I like Kate Hudson and Leslie Odom Jr. and so I didn’t want to tarnish my views on them. In fact, I wanted to believe that the people who had seen it or even the trailer were being over the top because they lived or were raising a loved one with autism.

Then this week I spent some time with other moms, like me, raising children with autism and based on their words, their comments, their opinions, I had to look.

I queued up the trailer and almost instantaneously I wanted to vomit. Within a few moments it insinuated that there would be a restraint. I couldn’t watch anymore and so I turned it off.

Quickly.

You see, my daughter, my beautiful daughter has severe autism. In our world, sometimes there have to be restraints. To keep her safe. To keep others safe. Its happened both at school and once in a while at home.

Each and every time I hate it. I hate that I have to stop her, to hold her from hurting herself. Its the most difficult part of autism.

I remind myself and tell others, I could do autism all day, if there was no need for restraint. I think any person in on a restraint with any child would tell you the same.

The restraint is hell. For us. Maybe even for her and we all suffer after. During the experience and after.

Watching the trailer my eyes welled with tears, I began to imagine my child, out of my sight with someone restraining her.

I couldn’t watch.

To those who take your time to watch this I want you to know that restraint, unfortunately is real and while sometimes necessary, is one of the most painful moments in a family’s life. You need to know that this movie, being shown is causing every mother, like myself living with a child like “Music” to be impacted. Emotionally. Negatively. Knowing others will now view our child differently and knowing this is how children like ours are being portrayed.

I’d ask you not to see the movie but I get it. We are human and this is part of who we are. People, looking to learn and often to look at the difficult moments in life.

If you do see the movie, I want you to know, I don’t hold Sia in contempt. In fact I think she was simply trying to bring light to something and was misguided, uniformed, under educated because the reality is her story is not right. Its not what we all live and if you look at the cast, the writers, they don’t know autism the way a person with autism does, the way a parent raising a child with autism does.

Sia is right. We do need to bring light to the situation. We do need to educate others. We do need to teach and learn to share our world but we need to do it our way, on our terms with respect to those who live this life day in and out.

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