Surprise, I Have an Opinion

I’m not sure if you saw this on whatever news channel you watched this week, but a young boy with autism wandered away from his school in California and was lost in the mountains for 30 hours.  The young man has limited speech, and it was feared that he would not respond to the calls of those searching for him.  Fortunately, he was found alive and is safe.

He is safe, but he is not with his parents.  Yesterday, his parents were denied custody of their son, and are allowed visits once per week.  Their custody was not taken away because of the wandering incident, at least not directly.

Recently, his parents have run across difficult times, and as a result have been evicted from their home.  While they were moving their belongings out of their soon to be former home, they had lightly tethered their son so that he would not wander off.  A real estate agent happened to look into the house and saw that the boy was restrained and notified child services.  The end result was that the boy was removed from the custody of his parents.  Which brings us back to his wandering off this week.  The articles I have read indicate that the boy wandered off from his school in search of his parents.

Luckily for us, Kaitlyn is not much of a wanderer.  Wandering is, however, somewhat common in individuals with autism.  Unless you are a parent of a child with autism, whether or not they wander, you might be thinking right now that it was right to remove the child from his parents.  Heck, you might even have an autistic child than wanders and feel that way.  That is fine.  My opinion is that the parents were doing what they felt was right and safe for their son in keeping from wandering as they moved.  I do not have an issue with what they did, and I am honestly a little upset that this boy was removed from his parents.  I can only imagine the stress he is under right now not being with the two people he has come to rely on the most, and with whom he is most comfortable.  Of course he is going to wander off and try to find them, they are his source of safety.

I would like to know how you feel about this.  Please feel free to comment, but please keep any comments civil.


2 responses

  1. Assuming the facts you shared are accurate, I’m with you. The state has no business asserting themselves into the home like that. The assumptions and ignorance are the worst part. We regularly force our kids to hold Caedmon’s wheelchair, to keep them from wandering off… should we have our kids removed? If anything, someone should be going after the school for their lack of supervision. And to think, the same government that runs that school now assumes they are the best caregivers for the child. Arrrrghhh.

    1. If what I have read from the local news sites out there (KCBS is one), that is the sequence of events. I will not be surprised to find out that there were other factors that contributed to the removal of the child. But tethering as the reason? Not a good one in my book. And now the state is best for the job? I agree, the state has not shown they are able to be responsible for keeping tabs on the boy.

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