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e_moon60

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My First Movie Review [Feb. 7th, 2010|07:27 pm]
e_moon60
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You gotta love an editor who, after you send her a wildly enthusiastic report on a movie you saw, says "Fine...add these bits and we'll put it up on Suvudu, the publishing house blog-site, with a link to your related book."   The movie was Temple Grandin, that I blogged about everywhere I could think of  (see, I sneak in another plug for it.)   That was late Friday, and then Saturday our internet was out, and I didn't think to look last night.   But it went up Saturday before the movie aired.

And look at the gorgeous lead-in she gave me before the review itself.  

I am one lucky writer!
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Comments:
[User Picture]From: damedini
2010-02-08 02:04 am (UTC)
And well deserved! The Speed of Dark really opens the eyes of those of us who do not know the world of Autism.

Forgive the ignorance, but what is a "refrigerator mother"?
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[User Picture]From: e_moon60
2010-02-08 02:33 am (UTC)
A psychiatrist named Bettelheim proposed the term and the theory that autistic children were the result of mothers who rejected them and did not give them emotional warmth...the mothers were cold, thus "refrigerator" mothers. Mothers who argued that they weren't rejecting the child, the child was rejecting them, were told they were in denial...that naturally they didn't want to admit their unconscious rejection. This notion governed decades of professional attitudes towards families with an autistic member, and breaking that lock was necessary for any rational approach to treatment. Families were told that institutionalization in childhood was the only way to go--a few clinics claimed to treat the autistic child, but mostly they were warehoused. Many were diagnosed as severely mentally retarded and warehoused that way.

Bettelheim wrote with some insight and intelligence on other topics than autism, but he's anathema to the mothers of autistic children--there are still, in the boonies and among less educated relatives, people who believe that mothers cause children to be autistic.
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[User Picture]From: damedini
2010-02-08 02:44 am (UTC)
Thanks.

Wow, that's insane! But I suppose it's not surprising from an era in psychology that also blamed mothers for homosexuality and any number of issues. And that this attitude could still exist anywhere is horrifying. The poor kids, too, who could be getting treatment they needed if the medical field wasn't busy persecuting their poor mothers! Now I'm wondering about a boy, he was the son of my grandmother's friend and diagnosed as severely retarded. He was certainly connected enough to be very angry and he was violent, but I wonder now if he wasn't autistic instead and just unable to communicate or connect.

Stil, I thank you for your book (I bought it because you'd written it, without looking at the subject), which really opened my eyes to the topic, and helped me work within the framework of an Asberger's woman I know. I look forward to this film, I'll take my son.
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[User Picture]From: e_moon60
2010-02-08 02:03 pm (UTC)
The boy you mention might have been autistic--there's no way to tell, now. I believe it was Alabama where a study was done to identify every autistic child and get a true number of the the prevalence...they checked on every child identified as autistic, retarded, deaf, emotionally disturbed, etc. to see if the diagnosis was right. Two major drivers of the study were concern that something was causing autism cases to increase, and the other was that autism was being overdiagnosed in order to tap funds for services to autistic kids. They found a lot of misdiagnoses, to be sure...but the final number of children IDed as autistic went up exactly as much as the number IDed as severely retarded went down. At least there, a child with autism was much more likely to be diagnosed severely retarded than a severely retarded child was to be diagnosed autistic.

The public still regards mothers as the major cause of most childhood problems...and of course a severely neglectful or abusive mother can cause the child problems. But the public is easily led to think all such problems are caused by mothers. For instance, the March of Dimes campaign to reduce birth defects, intended to educate women of childbearing age to the harm done by alcohol and street drugs during pregnancy, led (predictably) to the assumption that a child with birth defects had a mother who drank and used drugs. "What were you on?" became the first question many people asked the mother when they saw a child with a limb deformity or other obvious birth defect. Mothers of the "escape artist" type of autistic child (M- wasn't, thank goodness!) can be considered neglectful if the child escapes and runs into the street starkers while she's in the bathroom, or abusive if she puts locks on all the doors and windows and locks the child up. The idiotic assumption is that mothers never need to use the toilet, take a shower, sleep, or do anything but stay by a child's side every moment...and that, too, gets criticism as being a "helicopter parent" who hovers too close and overprotects.

It's a wonder mothers don't go psycho more often--they're in the classic double-bind from the get-go.
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From: zackthedog
2010-02-08 04:05 pm (UTC)

Child escapes

Even without any complicating factors, moms and dads can be suspected of being neglectful. Our youngest child was the master of disappearances. In a era of hysteria regarding missing children, P- had to be watched constantly. Playgrounds, shopping malls, grocery stores, home - he escaped at the drop of a hat (we ended up buying a leash for him). One morning a neighbor found him (age 2) in the road outside our house. We got a visit from Protective Services, you bet. I'm glad DPS took it seriously enough to check it out, but it wasn't fun. Judgement is always easier to render from the outside. Not more accurate, mind you, but easier.
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[User Picture]From: e_moon60
2010-02-08 04:37 pm (UTC)

Re: Child escapes

Lucky for us, M- could not turn doorknobs early on. Lack of fine-motor coordination and muscle tone have their uses...because he was also an escape artist when out. If anything upset him, he wanted to flee, fast, and had no conception of "safe" and "not safe" directions. A leash is great for kids like that, much better than hanging onto them physically and risking a dislocated elbow when they throw their full weight on the restraint to get away.
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[User Picture]From: jerusha
2010-02-08 06:12 pm (UTC)
It's a wonder mothers don't go psycho more often--they're in the classic double-bind from the get-go.

I've heard this summed up as: A Mother's Place is In the Wrong

Which, alas, is an entirely accurate summation of how our culture treats motherhood.
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[User Picture]From: kristine_smith
2010-02-08 04:13 am (UTC)
Congratulations on your first review, and on the great lead-in.
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[User Picture]From: e_moon60
2010-02-08 02:04 pm (UTC)
Thanks, Kris. I'm thinking maybe I should make this my secondary career???

Or maybe not, given the very few movies I actually see....
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[User Picture]From: entp2007
2010-02-08 06:05 am (UTC)
I knew that name sounded familiar. I recall hearing an interview with Temple Grandin on NPR not that long ago. We don't have HBO so hopefully the movie will be available on Netflix in the not too distant future.
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[User Picture]From: e_moon60
2010-02-08 01:46 pm (UTC)
Someone's told me it's being released on DVD in April. Since we're having that intermittent internet problem, I haven't tried to find out for myself on the HBO site, but supposedly the info's there.
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[User Picture]From: msminlr
2010-02-08 12:01 pm (UTC)
I've been hearing Ms. Grandin being interviewed on NPR over her memoir-books for several years now, so I was very eager to see the movie this weekend. Somehow, though, I'd got it in my head that it would first-air on SUNDAY, not SATURDAY. I was very pissed-off for a while yesterday evening, thinking I'd missed it.

Good old HBO, though, does lots of reruns, and we were able to view it yesterday evening at a civilized hour, AND with the DVR running. I think I used close-to a dozen Kleenexes during the movie, and I can feel myself tearing-up again as I write this, over the simple wonderfulness of it.

This is one we get a DVD of when it comes out.
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[User Picture]From: jakethrash
2010-02-19 03:16 pm (UTC)
Caught the movie on HBO a week or so ago, and have watched it again a couple of times since. I thought it was very well done. Both respectful and enlightening. It's one I'd recommend to everyone.
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[User Picture]From: e_moon60
2010-02-19 11:31 pm (UTC)
Glad it struck you the same way it did me.
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