Want to commit suicide because of my son's autismAutism Mom Blog

Want to commit suicide because of my son’s autism

The title of this post, “Want to commit suicide because of my son’s autism” is a keyword search that led someone to my blog this morning.  My heart dropped when I saw this.  The person did not leave a comment, I wish she had.  (I don’t know if it was a he or she, but I’m going to use she to make writing this easier).  The thought that someone is thinking about doing this is scary.  I pray that the commit suicide search on the internet is her way of reaching out for some kind of help.  I know how isolating having a child with autism can be.  For some, reaching out online is the only thing they can do.  This post is a message to that person.

My Response to Who Searched on Commit Suicide Because of Autism Son

I know it can be tough raising an autistic child.  I know that there are times when you feel overwhelmed, and alone.  I know how everyday can feel like a battle, and that there are times when you don’t think you can go on.  I’ve been there.  What gets me through is a strong support system of family and friends that I have developed over time.  It hasn’t been easy.  Most of my family doesn’t understand what I am going through, but they are there when I am at my wits ends.  I also have respite care for my son.  I make use of it when I need to.  I also have, and this is the most important thing, a strong and supportive husband.  I know that this isn’t the case in a lot of families raising an autistic child.  The divorce rate in special needs families are high.  You are not the first person to come to my blog using commit suicide in their search phrase. Unfortunately, there are a lot of people that feel like they want to commit suicide because their child is autistic.

I’d like to offer you advice on where to go for help, but it’s difficult without knowing your situation.  There are online support groups for parents of autistic children.  They have helped me a lot.  Are you a member of any?  Have you reached out to them?  Is your family receiving services for your child?  Do you have a case manager for those services that you can talk to?  Your case manager can put you in touch with someone to help you.  You can also talk to your doctor, or even your child’s doctor, for a referral.

Please, get help.  Suicide isn’t the solution.

http://www.autismspeaks.org/family-services/autism-response-team

Call us at 888-288-4762 or en Español 888-772-9050, or email familyservices@autismspeaks.org.

Autism Response Team (ART) members are specially trained to connect families with information, resources and opportunities.

 

#AutismSuicide Blogger Post Links:

Life With Aspergers: Response to Want to Commit Suicide

Homeschool and Etc. Committing Suicide Because of Son’s Autism

 

Update:  Posted in comments.  I think it’s a great idea.  Who wants to join us?

I plan to post on this later today but I’d really like to see other people post about this too. Lets show that we can support the carers as well as the people with autism.

Any takers?? Maybe if we can post and reply in the comments here and also tweet using #AutismSuicide ??

LEAVE the link to your post in COMMENTS, and I’ll add it up here.  Let’s all come together on this.  We can Tweet each other’s post using hashtag  #AutismSuicide.  If we get a lot of people wanting to do this, we can schedule one day to take over Twitter with the hashtag #AutismSuicide and really get our message out there.

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43 comments to Want to commit suicide because of my son’s autism

  • That’s heartbreaking. It’s too bad you can’t find out who it is so that you might be able to at least open the door to communication. Maybe this person has no one to vent or talk to.
    Zipporah Sandler recently posted..Splash it on with Nakano

  • Oh, that’s heartbreaking. As a former therapist, I urge this reader and any others who feel this way to seek help. Hope can be found, you can find ways to deal with this better.
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  • That is so sad! Tammy, you bring something special to the world of parenting autistic children, I’m so glad you are here for these parents. I hope this visitor comes back and reaches out to you in friendship, you can really help each other!
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  • This breaks my heart for momma and little one. Momma who is stressed to the point of considering this and little one is unaware and dependant on moms love

  • So glad you’re here as a source of support and information to let people know that they’re not alone!
    Liz @ A Nut in a Nutshell recently posted..How Does the a.m. Skillet Breakfast Sound?

  • When I first saw the title to this post, I found it really shocking. After reading the post, I can see that the person who you are referring to must have shocked you too. I have a son with Asperger’s Syndrome. Each day is an incredible challenge. I am very sad for this mom or dad. I hope that they can find a support system to help them out. I know I have had to reach out myself. I know that it can be a major struggle, but there are a lot of resources out there. I am glad you addressed this.

  • I’m glad you caught the keyword search and wrote this post. As a behavioral analyst who works with kids with autism and sees the havoc the disorder can wreak on families and especially mothers (usually the main caregiver), my heart goes out to this parent. I hope he or she reads your advice and reaches out to someone in his/her community.
    Megan Broutian recently posted..summer special edition Kindle giveaway

  • Having a child is life changing for anyone, but when your child has autism it can turn your whole world upside down.

    I am the single mom of a child with autism. Yes, my marriage is one of the statistics, but marriages(and people)don’t crash because of autism, it just magnifies the issues already present.

    It can be a struggle sometimes to maintain an identity outside parenting your autistic child, but it is essential. A night out once in awhile, maintaining a hobby or interest, working out, taking a class… whatever you can fit in that is “for you” helps, and by all means if you feel yourself breaking, get help. You can heal, the downward spiral can be stopped. You can be better, and when you are, you will be able to be the advocate your child needs, so they can realize their best potential.
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  • First I want to say that suicide is not the way. Having a child with autism can seem impossible and I know it is so hard. I had a terrible time dealing with my son’s autism. I often road my emotions based on how his day was going. But that isn’t the way. You need to know that you are more than that, and you need to find someone to talk to. I write for Generation Rescue, and we believe autism is treatable. My own son has improved significantly which means our quality of life has improved. Please go to generation rescue and locate a rescue angel in your area. They can help you find resources, support groups, treatment options, or maybe just to talk. I am sure you feel alone, but you aren’t. I’m here, and I will listen. I know everything you are feeling. I’ve been there, and guess what, I’ve come out the other side. You can to. And you want to.

    I have a friend that recently committed suicide and what she left is not what you want to leave. This is not the answer for you, your loved ones, or anyone else. Reach out, tell someone how you feel, and tell them you need help. Often people just don’t realize how hard it is. Ask a friend if they would mind making you dinner so you don’t have to. It can help. write down your feelings and get them out. You need to. Autism can be so much for you to take, so get it out. But know that we are here. I’m sure Tammy would listen too.

    Just don’t give up. It can and it will get better. I know, I really have been there too.
    maryann at Matthew’s Puzzle recently posted..I Scream for Ice Cream

    • Tammy

      Thank you for taking the time to respond to this, Maryann. I’m always here to listen, and help. Organizations like Generation Rescue have great support resources. I’ve had my lows, when I didn’t know how to go on. I’m fortunate to have a strong, supportive husband, family and friends that support me. I know that a lot of parents with an autistic child do not have that. But there is help out there. There are people that know what you are going through, and can help you. You already have a strong group here, if you return and read this post.

    • Sara

      Hi Maryann,
      I searched “mother, autism, suicide” on google tonight and found this blog and your response. I sometimes think about it too but it scares the hell out of me. I read all the responses and liked yours the most because you had said your child improved significantly and that’s how your quality of life has improved too. I do not think ANY HELP, any Support Group, Parent groups, etc can help me if my son does not progress. I see my entire existence and happiness dependent on his progress and recovery!!!

      He is only 4 and my husband & I have done everything possible, everything in this world to help him but I do not see the progress I was hoping to see:((( I am not sure how long I can go on like this…how many more days, weeks, months, and years…Everyday of this life is a hell, everyday of this life is a challenge, how can I continue for years, HOW???? I am still young myself and had dreams, plans, goals in life…I wanted to live and do things, but now I feel my life has been a complete waste, all I see is “Autism” and I hate that world…honestly, my whole body get tense, I start sweating, I feel nausiated every time I hear it or use it but I am using and hearing it numerous times through out the day and I simply HATE it:((( I do not want to live the rest of my life with autism…I cannot do it…I just cannot…
      Do you really think these kids get better? will they be able to be mainstreamed one day?
      How can we live year after year after year dealing with Autism? how??? how????

      • Beck

        Sara,
        I hear your pain and your torment,
        I too sadly am fed up frustrated and angry at autism, my youngest was recently diagnosed with Aspergers, this is on top of my already diagnosed other two autistic children.
        Hope seems to be so far away, I live daily in an autism bubble and juggle work in there too, life currently is so far from easy
        We have no family support, my biggest help comes from two other families in the same situation, I am lucky to have a parents group to cling to they make me realize when I need to get my head out of the autism bubble and remember me. I still have dreams they are harder to achieve, they may take longer but there are ways they can be achieved.
        As a parent of kids with additional needs I ,use say priorities have changed over the last few years and some days feel hopeless but then I look at some of my kids achievements and know how hard we worked for it and my high is so much higher I got so excited over my son in his support unit getting his first lunch order, (I was fearful most of the day over what ifs)
        As a parent we need to learn to celebrate the small achievements they may not be celebrated in mainstream but hey hours of OT and SPEECH went into it I will celebrate. I have had to try stop comparing my Kids with the mainstreamers, that for me was debilitating. I love my three kids with every part of me, I hate autism, I hate what I feel it has taken from me, I can’t celebrate what was but I can celebrate what I have left. The biggest part is my love for my kids will never change, autism can’t take that, I focus hard on that.
        Sara please see you gp, maybe even a parents counsellor to help you vent the anger that comes with this autism, there is help for parents out there, and the kids, xxx

  • How sad. I hope that this mom finds your blog again and is able to reach out for help.
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  • I posted this on facebook in the Autism Bloggers Group. Hopefully we can start a wave of support for carers.

    Not long ago, a post about wanting to be normal caused a wave of support to ripple around the world in support of people with autism. It would be nice if this post could cause the same sort of effect with Carers.

    I plan to post on this later today but I’d really like to see other people post about this too. Lets show that we can support the carers as well as the people with autism.

    Any takers?? Maybe if we can post and reply in the comments here and also tweet using #AutismSuicide ??

  • Oh my this breaks my heart. I know for all of us here who are parents of a child with autism we can relate I know at one point we thought the same. I hope she/he finds her support group to keep strong and stay strong for his/her child. I pray for her peace of mind.

  • So very sad. I hope this person finds the help that they need and the strength inside themselves that they really do have.
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  • Donna Jean Baker

    I am not really familiar with autism but as a parent I know childhood with my children was difficult but not near as difficult had they had this disorder! I am glad that you caught this and reached out! There is help for parents of children with disabilities and I hope she reaches out for it and glad there are people who recognize that danger word! So sad!

  • This is sad. It is a reality for some people, not that their child is autistic, but that they do not have help when they need it. That is what the real problem is. I read a blog post recently about a man caring for his aging parent, who acknowledged that he needed help with caring for his dad. A major breakthrough that can be applied to parents who are “carers” to use a term from Europe.

  • This entire post, from the search wording to your response, made me cry. I hope this person and anyone else needing a bit of love and support, returns to read the words they need to hear.
    Marcie W. recently posted..Wordless Wednesday – 7/11/12

  • Hi. I’m in the group that started the ‘I Wish I Didn’t Have Asperger’s’ flashblog event. I’d be happy to help here, too. Did you plan on doing a flashblog type of event? The reason we did that was to overtake social networks and google in one day to have the best reach to the person who had done the search.
    Quiet Contemplation recently posted..Being The Rock During The Storm

    • Tammy

      We are working on #AutismSuicide right now. You can write up a post in response to this one, leave the link in comments, and I’ll your link into the post. We will Tweet each other’s posts using hashtag #AutismSuicide. If we get a lot of people participating, we can schedule one day to do this nonstop.

  • So heartbreaking to read.

    I am sure there are many like this person and I’m sure suicide has crossed the minds of many parents in their darkest moment.

    I hope this information finds the people who need it. And I hope some in government reads this and realizes how critical support for special needs family is. In some cases it’s a matter of life or death.

  • [...] health care practitioner has made his or her own observations and also suspect autism.    Should you tell your friend if you suspect her child has a form of autism? This is a dilemma that so…the area of intervention, if you have someone with autism in the family or know of someone then you [...]

  • Hi, Tammy! Posting after first time here. BTW I came across your blog after googling “homeschooling autistic children.”

    http://homeschoolnetc.blogspot.com/2012/07/committing-suicide-because-of-sons.html
    Happy Elf Mom recently posted..Committing Suicide Because of Son’s Autism

  • To the the suicidal parent and to any other who feels this way:

    I have often known what it is like to not have the will to live, to feel that I don’t belong anywhere and to feel alone even in a roomful of people. This is because I grew up with an undiagnosed ASD and because of the fallout of all that has gone on especially earlier in my life, I still feel the effects of it. I also have a daughter with an ASD, diagnosed. I don’t know the person who has begun all these discussions but I would like to connect with you, if interested, at my blogspot:
    http://ldesherl.blogspot.com
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  • [...] been programmed by entertainment for 60 years to go out in a blaze of gloryPowered by Yahoo! AnswersMichael asks…Based on your knowledge, personal or from current research, are suicide rates increas… personal or from current research, are suicide rates increasing or decreasing?I'm doing this for a [...]

  • cm jones

    Interesting all the support for Asperger’s, I will refer some friends. However, I am in the same situation of hopelessness with a child who a psychiatrist said, “was a hard nut to crack.” He has some ADHD tendencies, disorganization and impulsivity. I am a trained teacher and therapeautic foster parent. We adopted this child at birth, and his development was unremarkable until about 4 or 4.5 yrs. Since that time, it’s has been a whirlwind. He tantrums, rages, destroys things, torments his younger siblings, screams at us, refuses to cooperate, hits/kicks/bites us, steals money, steals phones, empties the batteries out of all his and siblings toys. All the therapists, psychiatrists, psychologists say, “Just press on, you’re doing the right things” or “You have to make him responsible for the damages.” Well, I’m sorry, but that’s just lame. How do you get an uncooperative child to “be responsible?” The “right things” are not working for this child. Any other ideas? Any support for a child that defies definition or diagnosis? I’ve tried RAD consultation, PTSD counseling, etc. and cannot find any help for him or us. Where do you guys have respite? Since we adopted, I was not aware of any respite available to us. I’d love to have just 24-48 hrs to clean my house. If we try to clean it, he just destroys it right behind us. I’ve had counselors ask me, “So how do you see us helping you?” Well, honey, if I knew the answer to that, don’t you think I would have done it in the last 7 years?

    • Tammy

      It gets frustrating when they don’t give you actual answers. The reason is, they don’t know. I get my respite care through my son’s CAP services. It’s not called CAP anymore. They’ve changed it and have it under a new name now. Contact your local ARC. http://www.thearc.org/ is the link to get you started in finding the one closest to you. Also, the Autism Society of America, http://www.autism-society.org/. They can also help you locate resources for you. Has he been diagnosed with autism? If he hasn’t, but has been diagnosed with ADHD, it could be a wrong diagnosis. That happens a lot.

  • Tom

    One of the reasons parents of autistic children feel so hopeless and confused is because all these agencies that are supposed to help, dont’ help enough, and then when a problem arises, instead of helping, they investigate or audit the family bringing more pain, more confusion and more hopelessness. Parents of autistic children are constantly having to explain and prove themselves and their situation to all these disconnected people who do drive by observations and don’t really know or care to know what they need or what’s going on. This leaves parents terribly depressed, because these are the very agencies that parents are told are there to HELP!!! And yet when they don’t help and then come around and investigate when no help leads to a crisis, it brings even more hopelessness.

  • Trip

    I have a child that is non verbal autisitc. Yes it’s been hard and lonely. I lost my dad the year I fell pregnant, it was unplanned. My husband left us when he realised at 16mths my child could be autistic. I have no family support or contact. I have no friends and no one knows my son is autistic. I’m in the process of getting him early intervention now that his over 2yrs old enough for a diagnosis. I’m severely exhausted can’t sleep I have no respite surviving on benifits. I need to visit my own dr appointment due to chronic kindey desease but I can’t find the time to because no one can look after my son for me. I never leave my home unless I need to for food because the area we live is unsafe. But it’s all I can afford to rent in this location. I can’t find my own voice my child and me are deathly silent. And I fear when my kidney fails who will look after my child. I never thought of dying befor but it sounds awfully appealing during these times. I want my child to be better I’m failing as a parent I’m just too exhausted and alone. There is no support I can reach out to I have tried and I have not found anyone I can open up to or relate with. I’m not even 30 yet but life seems so long. When I read your post I fe utterly defeated because of all the help and resources you have and I know that’s what it takes to help raise a child in this situation, but I do not have those help or support and that’s why when I read this it’s obvious to me there will not be hope for me and my child.

    • Tammy

      There’s always hope. It took time for me to get all the support we have. My son wasn’t diagnosed until he was 5. It was a constant battle to get him what he needed. Early Intervention took the longest. Once you get that, you can request a home aid and respite care. Check with your area for a support group. I didn’t have one when my son was younger. We live in a small town, and back then, I had to seek support from outside my community.

  • Jonel

    Tammy,

    Thank you for posting this. My favorite uncle (read: favorite human) committed suicide a few weeks ago and I’m just learning how common these types of thoughts are in the special needs community… Namely with autism. I hope -and honestly believe- that you’ve saved a few lives (and families) by having the courage to address the elephant in the room.

    I am putting together an awareness/fundraising event in Denver this summer in his memory. It will be a comedy show (because laughter is the best medicine around) that dabbles in humor around living with disabilities. I’d like to share some stories and information beforehand – because I think the general public is completely unaware what it’s like out there for autistic kids and their families that strive to conform to impossible standards. It’s exhausting, alienating and can make you question your own worth.

    Anyway, as I am considering charities to benefit (my key program now is my autistic & diabetic cousin’s day program)… I would love to know if there are other gems out there who focus more on mental health for people/families with autism. Or any that help educate the public about it. Or one that lobbies for better government programs (the red tape is seriously tragic… Especially when you add diabetes to the mix!)

    I wish I could capture my uncle’s spirit so it was clear what an utterly selfless man he was in life – including the carefully planned out details around his death. He was my hero and I know that in his mind, he sacrificed himself for us. That doesn’t make the heartbreak better… In fact, it makes it hurt so much worse.

    So hey, you caretakers out there. You, yes YOU! Look in the mirror and tell yourself how proud you are of what you tackle everyday. Think hard about how much you make a difference in the life of your kid. And the rest of your family. Because in between all the bickering and tantrums…you are the very center of someone’s universe. You’re the bee’s knees! So take better care of yourself. You can’t keep fueling the marathon you live on fumes. Your health may not always come first… But if you let it slip, there is nothing you will have left in you for anyone else… No matter how much you love them. Let perfection go sometimes and focus on happiness. It still exists, even for you. It’s a skill, not a circumstance.

    Get support. If you don’t qualify for the program you hoped could help, get creative. Work out trades with another parent in your situation. Join a support group. Get (or train) a qualified babysitter and go be a human that enjoys a quiet meal in public once in awhile. Fight for your sanity. Laugh as often as possible. And don’t be afraid to ask for help when you need it. There is no better way for someone to understand what you’re going through than to spend a little time in your shoes.

    And above all else: love yourself.

  • JustMe

    Its funny, there are no resources out there for parents at the end of their rope.

    I moved in with my own parents as a single mom of a child with autism and muscular dystrophy and since I got here I’ve been told daily how I fail to live up to being a good mother. I really don’t want to wake up tomorrow, I even convinced myself that my death will be no different to my child than when our dog passed last year. Maybe my family would appreciate my leaving, I’m always being reminded of how I shouldn’t live here, that I’m not living up to expectations, that I don’t try hard enough, I’m basically s*** on a stick here.

    A google search only turned this site up and a couple other referring to it along with stories of parents killing their children. Why would I want to harm my child? The universe did a good enough job on that one. I want to go, to stop being a lousy mother, and leave my child with someone more capable, because it’s not like they’d really remember/notice in the long run.

    • Tammy

      Aww, honey. Your child will notice. I used to think the same way about my son. That he wouldn’t react to the loss of me. But, then I had a chance to observe him when my husband was away for a week. He did notice. He did miss him. Yes, he displayed this differently than his sister. But, as his mother, I know when he is upset about something. When he’s happy or sad, based on little things he does.
      I feel so bad for the way your family is treating you. They don’t understand what it’s like for a parent raising an autistic child. It may look like you are not “meeting their expectations,” but I know from personal experience that raising an autistic child requires a lot from a parent. You have to be mom, doctor, therapist, teacher, and so much more. Your focus is on your child and home. From what you have written, although I can read a great deal of pain in your words, I also read love for your child, between the lines. Sometimes, when we feel the worse, it’s that love that can get us through the darkest of times.

  • Nik

    I am a mother of 10 yr old twin girls, severly autistic with early signs of OCS. They are have severe self injurious behaviors. We’ve tried medication after medication. Therapies. Diet. Everything. I’m at my wits end. I feel alone. I feel scared. I think about death all the time. I would’ve done it a long time ago. But then who will care for my girls. I used to have faith in GOD and that kept me going but it seems he no longer has faith in me. On the verge of giving up. Please help. Any advice or life changing wisdom would be greatly appreciated.

    Afraid

    • Haley's Comet

      Nik,

      I am the mother of a 2.5 year old daughter, who is non-verbal and has ASD and speech apraxia. I stumbled upon this post today and wanted to let you now that I know how you feel. I think about death all of the time. I feel like I have lost all control of my life and now I can’t even control if I die — because, like you said, who will take care of my daughter if I am gone? I have no advice or life changing wisdom for you. All I can say is that my heart hurts for both of us and that I understand how you feel. I am afraid too. Sending hugs to you.

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