For Issy   8 comments


I am sorry.
I want desperately to undo what has been done to you, and I can’t. I simply can’t. If you were one of my children, I would fold you in my arms and let you know you are a treasure. You matter just as you are. Not some trained, controlled, acceptable incarnation of you, but you in all your glorious, messy beauty. You deserve love and acceptance. It breaks my heart that you didn’t get that.

You deserve quiet, peace, and privacy. You deserve room to grow and a safe space in which to do so. I am sorry you didn’t have that space. I didn’t either. I did what I needed to survive, and I broke over and over again. My adolescence was a string of Faustian bargains, and I stumbled into adulthood yoked to some skewed culpability manufactured by the very people who forced me into those circumstances.

I grew up in a different time. There is no record of the events of my past, and I owe it to no one to dredge them up and justify my actions. All my supposed sins are my own. I can hold them close to me. I can guard my secrets, not out of shame, but out of love for my self.

I am sorry your pain was turned into a public spectacle. Do not feel shame. Do not be embarrassed. You are not to blame. There is a community out here waiting to fold our arms around you.

Because you are a treasure.

Posted September 7, 2013 by itsbridgetsword in autism, autistic families

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8 responses to “For Issy

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  1. Pingback: Emergency Information to prevent more Issy Stapletons | yetanotherlefty

  2. Your words are beautiful.

  3. You can do something for Issy. Why not help pay for her care? For her therapy or even just donate straight to Matt?

    You’re still making her a public spectacle, you know. By posting this PUBLICALLY rather than just writing her. It’s pretty hypocritical.

    Why not actually try to help her?

    • No. I cannot financially contribute to care when in the past, what has been viewed as care in this family is institutionalization and a course of treatment that is tantamount to abuse. I’ve been on the inside of these type of places, I wouldn’t willingly help anyone put a child in a place like that.
      May I point out that this post is over a year old? At that point, Issy was fighting for her life after an attempted murder by the one person she should have been able to trust more than anyone else on earth. Furthermore, writing a private message to someone else’s minor child, no matter how benign the message, would have been grossly inappropriate.
      Finally, leaving publicly searchable messages of support for Issy, is trying to help. When Issy is old enough to control her own life, we want her to know there is a community out there that welcomes her with open arms.

    • Lexi–You are aware, are you not, that autistic people very frequently live in poverty, or on very low incomes? Is Matt in need of financial assistance? If so, I haven’t heard anything about it. Is there specific care towards her recovery (from the incident under discussion, not from her autism) that Issy requires and her father can’t acquire, that you could point me towards in any verifiable, public information from him? Is there any information that Matt has made public, detailing need for contributions for resources for Issy, that isn’t the very same mistreatment that very likely precipitated her “aggression” in the first place?

      Really, I’m curious.

  4. Not to mention, the many, many news articles and attendant comments sympathizing primarily with Issy’s attempted murderer and effectively blaming Issy for the crime, or calling *her* the abuser in this situation, are also public, and I don’t see Lexi complaining about that.

    Why shouldn’t the message that “What happened to you was unequivocally wrong, it should not have happened, and it was not your fault,” be public? Not just for Issy but for a lot of kids still in the situation of being blamed for their own mistreatment because of their disabilities.

    The absolutely poisonous messages towards Issy and towards all high-needs disabled kids are public–in the mainstream news media. What’s hypocritical about countering those messages publicly?

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