Sunday, March 18, 2007

Inspiration from Elijah Wapner, Valerie Paradiz, and MTV

If you're looking for a little inspiration, check out MTV this evening, 9:00 Eastern, 8:00 Central, to see True Life: I Have Autism. There's no handwringing here, as the New York Times notes,
Tonight, with minimal voice-over, “True Life: I Have Autism” introduces viewers to Jeremy, Jonathan and Elijah, three high school students whose autism is now old hat to themselves and their families. No one cries when talking about it. Instead they plan new approaches, sigh as old problems resurface and laugh often.
Elijah Wapner is the Elijah of Valerie Paradiz's moving memoir of learning about Elijah's neurological difference, and is now an adolescent pursuing a career in standup comedy.

This will be something to see!

7 comments:

Another Autism Mom said...

I thought it was a great show. The three kids have very different abilities and challenges but one thing in common: they are all teenagers trying to fit in - something everyone can relate to. NT kids that watch this show on MTV will learn more about autism and become more respectful of people with this disorder.

MothersVox said...

It was great, wasn't it? I hope it has a huge impact on the young adults who watched.

I was so delighted that they found a way to have happy endings for each of the boys. Although I'm not usually a happy endings enthusiast, it seemed important to have happy endings on this particular show.

I so loved the autism joke: "My parent's say I'm autistic, but I know I just have an attitude problem." So funny. So completely turns the whole issue on its head.

My one complaint -- as the mother of a girl on the spectrum -- where are the girls in the show? I know boys outnumber girls 4 to 1, but it would be great to see a girl represented as well.

kyra said...

oh, darn it! i missed it. i saw valerie speak last summer at the annual ASA conference. she showed a short video of her son doing a stand-up routine that he wrote. it was wonderful!

mothersvox said...

Kyra, I think you can see clips of the program on the MTV website, but my computer connection isn't fast enough for smooth video download, so I'm not sure. Check it out! Valerie's work is really inspiring to me!

Sarah said...

I just checked the TV listings, and this episode of True Life is going to be rebroadcast on MTV a couple more times:

3/22/2007
12:00PM

3/23/2007
7:00PM

I just set my VCR!

Thanks for the heads-up about the program, MV. As the parent of two girls on the spectrum, I know what you mean about underrepresentation. My older daughter is so often that "only girl in the room."

MothersVox said...

Thanks for the additional screening times Sarah! That's so helpful. I hope Kyra gets to see it!

March Day said...

Thanks for popping over to my website to say hi!

Ughh! I wish I had known about this. Sounds like it was a good show. I'm going to have to look for the clips on the MTV website.