You see, the treasures of books like Carley's Voice and The Way I See It, by Temple Grandin, are overwhelmed by a large quantity of very untrue and harmful books. "The Myth of Autism" one reads, proclaiming in large letters on its cover to tell readers "how a misunderstood epidemic is destroying our children". Another, seemingly innocuously titled book "The Autism Book" claims to tell parents about treatment, recovery, and intervention. Inside it endorses chelation and tells parents (in the same sentence as it says there is no scientific evidence backing this) not to vaccinate their children. Those are only two examples, but there are many, many more sitting on these shelves (did I mention Jenny McCarthy's book is here, too?).
And I can't help thinking to myself, some parent, likely scared after diagnosis, is going to come in here looking for answers. And this is what they're going to find. And I'm helpless to stop it.
If you know a parent of a newly diagnosed child, please, please reach out to them. Loan them your own autism books, tell them about the autism Facebook pages you follow, the websites you know. If you're not sure where to refer them, send them to the Autism Spectrum Explained resources page, which has more resources than they could ever need. Because if we don't, this is what they and their child may well be met with. And that, to me, is horrifying. Too many families have gone through this already - if our efforts can help keep even one from this, it will be worth it.