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Too Wise to be Mistaken, Too Good to be Unkind

Christian Parents Contend With Autism 

Book Reviews by 2 parents found on

Reviewer: Anna A. Thorburn from Petersburgh, NY United States 
Too Wise To Be Mistaken; Too Good To Be Unkind  is a must-read for all Bibically-minded parents facing the challenge of raising a child with a disability!! It was first recommended to us by our family doctor, and proved to be a turning point in our lives.

As a mother of 4 small children, one with autism and mild CP, this book was a God-send. It was the single most helpful and theologically sound book that I have read in my struggle to find appropriate and God-honoring treatment for our son. In this excellent book, I was encouraged to think Bibically about our son, God's provision, treatment options, and our own ability as parents to deal with our son's disabilities. I feel completely confident now that we are ordained by God as parents to make appropriate decsions for our child, and that God's hand and grace are upon His children. That He has given us "all things pertaining to life and Godliness.." Therefore, we can find all the answers for how to deal with a disability using Bibical principles, which are so clearly outlined in Cathy Steere's book! In this book, she shares the story of early life with her son Drew~how they parented him (this could be considered a parenting manual as well, in my opinion!), how they found out he has autism, and then their journey through the options available to them.

Though Cathy does not promote *one* single way of dealing with a disability, we personally found that the approach she and her husband chose for their own son, has worked for us as well. We used her resource lists found in the book to contact specialists across the country, finally finding "our" specialist for our son Josiah. We homeschool our children, but wondered if our disabled son would fare as well in that environment as oppossed to with the "professionals." After reading Cathy's book and with much prayer and research, we found that we could **indeed** homeschool our son and that he would certainly fare even better than if put in the school environment! Above all, we have become confident in simply thinking Bibically about each trial and decision that comes our way. Knowing God is sovereign, His love abounds to His own children, and that He is sufficient for all our needs, including those regarding our autistic son...these things give us hope and comfort.

Too Wise To Be Mistaken; Too Good To Be Unkind was the single most helpful tool in our journey to "leave no stone unturned" in the quest for what is best for our son. God brought it to us at just the right time. I have recommended it to dozens of families. Our family doctor also recommends it to all his patients who have an autistic or disabled child. I cannot recommend this book more highly~~it is a must-read!!!!!!!!!! ~Anna Thorburn

Reviewer: Tim Stevens from Renton, WA USA 

In attempting to find authoritative books on Autism, there tends to be two sources: psychologists/health care professionals, and parents who have engaged (usually with some measure of success) in one form of therapy or another. Cathy Steere makes no pretenses to be authoritative; hers is a gritty, first-hand account of the realities of encountering the faceless monster that is Autism and her personal battle to snatch her son from its jaws.

Steere provides a candor in her narrative that is refreshing. She doesn't shirk from the graphic details of personal agony; self-doubt and second-guessing that haunt all parents of Autistic children. She resists the temptation to portray herself as a selfless heroine in providing the constant therapy to her son, and, in so doing, gives hope to the reader who struggles through the same frustrations.

Those who view Autism solely as a psychological/social disorder will no doubt denigrate the therapy program espoused by Steere. This approach focuses upon treating the brain as a physical organ, rather than a social organ, and operates from the standpoint that repetitive exercise through continual input can strengthen the desired skills and ultimately produce the desired output. As an educator, scientist and athletic coach, I find the approach solid in basis.

After trying "typical" approaches - including standard physical and occupational therapies as well as restrictive diets - my wife Denise and I found in Steere's book a program that empowers the parent to affect real change in the child. For my wife, the book provided a constant companion, a friend who was able to share her grief and hope on command. For myself, it provided a source to make sense out of the confusion that ensnarled our family. For our daughter, the book provided us an avenue to effectively wrest her from her darkness. The progress that she has experienced - a progress that has been significant enough to both make an impression upon her doctors and therapists and provide relief and hope to our family - can be substantially attributed to Cathy's tale of struggle and victory with her son Drew.

This book is, indeed, not for everyone. Not all parents will be willing to put the time, effort, and energy and yes, discipline necessary into the program to which Steere refers. Steere's unapologetically conservative Christian values will no doubt be an affront to those who are looking for a more "touchy-feely" approach. That being said, Steere's book is a venture into a bold response to an insidious condition...a response with a decidedly happy ending.