Recommended Reading for December 9

Colored Spade

Little black girls in small Maine towns never do. Little black girls with white parents in small Maine towns are just confused. And little black girls with mental illnesses and white parents in small Maine towns are very confused.

I still don’t know my first mother, but I would like to. I know she has mental illness, like I do. I know I have a sister. I’d like to know them very much. I feel lost, drifting. It doesn’t matter how much the polar bear loves the panda cub, the panda cub will still never be a polar bear, even if she tries to bleach away her blackness.


So, me and my aide were at the park with one of my dog-walking clients. This lady and her dog come in (we are the only people there) and naturally we start chatting because her dog and my client are playing. She directs all of her conversation to my aide, who says “EVA’S a dog walker and SHE sometimes comes here” etc.

Bearing Witness

This story doesn’t surprise me. I hear from families with children with disabilities and my nephew also has a disability that requires equipment. Claims are denied and families scramble to keep the child involved in the community, using whatever they can afford. As a child grows into adolescence, he/she may find himself/herself in the same situation as the Orlando youngster- using equipment designed for babies and toddlers even when it’s not medically necessary. (There’s an important distinction there- I’m not blaming parents for using suitable equipment for safety or medical reasons. ) It can happen to adults too.

Transcript: Autism Women’s Network interview with Kristina Chew: The ABCs of IEPs

Here’s a transcript of Sharon daVanport and Tricia Kenney’s interview with Kristina Chew about Individualized Education Plans (IEPs) for the newly-founded Autism Women’s Network radio show.

The Autism Women’s Network mission statement is: “To provide effective supports to autistic females of all ages through s sense of community, advocacy and resources.” We also want to let everyone know, too, that our radio show is going to be supportive of all people on the spectrum, and today is a really good example of that.

We have Kristina Chew as our guest today. Kristina is a professor at Saint Peter’s College, and I believe, if I’m not mistaken, Saint Peter’s College is in New Jersey….

Personal Experience from Kate, who recovered from Anorexia

I am Kate, 31 and in recovery from anorexia. My experience of seeking treatment has taught me that often you have to fight the system and keep persisting until your voice is heard.
I first sought treatment for anorexia when I was in the early staged of the illness, aged 17, back in 1995. My family doctor weighed me and put me on a course of antidepressants. He told me that even Princess Diana had an eating disorder and implied that it was simply a phase. I felt like a fraud as I’d gone there hoping for help with my eating disorder and received nothing but medication.

Over a period of a year I saw my doctor monthly to be weighed and each time my medication was either increased or switched. Unsurprisingly, the medication had little or no impact on my illness. Eventually I was misdiagnosed again, this time with Chronic Fatigue and referred to a specialist who gave me yet more medication and put me on a graduated exercise programme to rebuild my strength. Looking back it is rather ironic that the very treatment of exercise was prescribed to an anorexic and years later my exercise addiction landed me in the EDU!