“I was arranged to marry a distant relative at the young age of 20. Abusive from day one, the next few years flew by in a blink! I got pregnant soon enough and even had to attend graduation with my 8-month-old boy.
My life, however, witnessed another whirlwind soon enough, when his pre-school teacher suggested us to get take him to a clinical psychologist. The diagnosis revealed that he had non-verbal Autism. The news which came as a shocker, eventually put me through four years of Clinical Depression. I stopped interacting with everyone and didn’t even inform my parents. But no matter the circumstances, I was determined to do everything in my power to support him.
Now, all this was easier said than done, especially as a non-working mother continuously shamed, called names, and even physically abused for her son’s condition. Only in 2006 did I decide to put a stop to it all by getting into a night shift job, taking calls. This gave me the opportunity to spend the mornings with my son and take him to his classes. Life seemed a bit better because of financial independence equipping me to be wholeheartedly myself.
That confidence also helped in opening up to my parents about everything. And you know what they say about parental love! I was asked immediately to move back to Chennai, with them and give life, a fresh start. As for my son, it provided him the perfect environment to grow in, with a ton of love and positivity. Today, thanks to that care, he’s grown to become extremely self-reliant. He’s also constantly exploring different interests with a state-level championship in skating, yellow belt in Karate, and even a keen interest in cooking.
And as for me, his happiness restored my inner peace, gradually aiding me to climb the corporate ladder. What I’ve wished for throughout this journey, although is society’s empathy. Even today, while stepping out to a public place, outsiders express their displeasure in me bringing my son. Many don’t let their children mingle, stating openly that the ‘disease’ might infect their kid as well. It’s sad from a bigger standpoint, especially with the exponential rise in the number of special kids, for all that these ‘Children of God’ need is acceptance!”
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