The following is an excerpt from an article that recently appeared in Spectrum News. The article was written by Alisa Opar, an article editor for Audubon Magazine and a frequent blogger. Alisa has published several other articles, also on Spectrum News, that describe the plight of the more severely affected autistic individual and the special struggles faced by low income families with disabled children.
The article, published April 24, 2019, starts as follows:
Earlier this year, London’s Southwark Playhouse announced the cast of a new play, “All in a Row.” It was instantly clear this would not be a typical family drama. The play unfolds the night before social services separates a boy named Laurence from his family. Unlike the other three characters, Laurence, a nonverbal autistic and sometimes aggressive 11-year-old, would be portrayed by a child-size puppet.
“It was utterly believable. Raw. Honest,” Sarah Ziegel, mother of four autistic boys and author of “A Parent’s Guide to Coping With Autism,” wrote on her blog. The puppet was an effective stand-in for a role that would have been too challenging for any child actor, Ziegel wrote. She applauded the playwright, Alex Oates, for addressing severe autism: “It is not pretty and it is certainly not fashionable in these days of neurodiversity where everyone is supposed to accept autism as a difference and not a disability.”
I was grateful that Alisa interviewed me for the article and took my opinion into consideration. Those who want to read the whole article can click on the link provided in this sentence.