Louder Than Words: A Mother's Journey in Healing Autism

( 87 )

Overview

The New York Times bestseller that is an inspiring 'story of hope' (People) for parents of autistic children

One morning Jenny McCarthy was having a cup of coffee when she sensed something was wrong. She ran into her two-year-old son Evan's room and found him having a seizure. Doctor after doctor misdiagnosed Evan until-after many harrowing, life-threatening episodes-one good doctor discovered that Evan is autistic.

With a foreword from Dr. ...

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Louder Than Words: A Mother's Journey in Healing Autism

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Overview

The New York Times bestseller that is an inspiring 'story of hope' (People) for parents of autistic children

One morning Jenny McCarthy was having a cup of coffee when she sensed something was wrong. She ran into her two-year-old son Evan's room and found him having a seizure. Doctor after doctor misdiagnosed Evan until-after many harrowing, life-threatening episodes-one good doctor discovered that Evan is autistic.

With a foreword from Dr. David Feinberg, medical director of the Resnick Neuro-psychiatric Hospital at UCLA, and an introduction by Jerry J. Kartzinel, a top pediatric autism specialist, Louder Than Words follows Jenny as she discovered an intense combination of behavioral therapy, diet, and supplements that became the key to saving Evan from autism. Her story sheds much-needed light on autism through her own heartbreak, struggle, and ultimately hopeful example of how a parent can shape a child's life and happiness.

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Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble
For years, Jenny McCarthy has kept us chortling with Belly Laughs, Baby Laughs, and Life Laughs. But her writings about pregnancy, motherhood, marriage, and divorce have not lacked a serious side. In Louder than Words, her most important book yet, she describes her experiences helping her autistic son, Evan Joseph Asher. McCarthy is emphatic about this book's urgency: "I just want moms who have children with autism to know that I am planning on using my big, giant, controversial mouth to blow the lid off a lot of things related to autism to give moms hope. It is so needed."
People
Emotional, devastating...a story of hope.
The Chicago Sun-Times
Honest, informative, down-to-earth, and sometimes painful... Mothers everywhere thank her.
autism.about.com
Surprisingly fun to read, realistic, and engaging... a good introduction to the ups and downs that autism brings to everyday life.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780452289802
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA) Incorporated
  • Publication date: 8/26/2008
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Pages: 224
  • Sales rank: 267,284
  • Product dimensions: 5.20 (w) x 7.90 (h) x 0.50 (d)

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 87 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(62)

4 Star

(6)

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(5)

2 Star

(4)

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(10)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 87 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 3, 2010

    As a divorced father of a son with Aspergers and his primary care giver, I was troubled by a number of aspects of Ms. McCarthy's book.

    While Ms. McCarthy universally condemns husbands for being absent, I know I am mot the only ex-husband who is the primary care giver. I would not say that her unusual lifestyle may have casued her son's problems. She does seem to believe she can make all sorts of generalizations and is always correct.
    Anecdotal evidence of unusual cures abound for every medical problem, but most parents cannot afford to hire privates planes or fly all over the country for the "best" this or that. Moreover, there are proven cases of deaths caused by chelation, exotic treatmens and special diets.
    I am older than Ms. McCarthy an did not have the advantage of the internet when my son was very young. I did encounter many doctors, government and private agencies, and schools that were not well informed, considerate, or willing to listen or explain. I did not throw temper tantrums or curse them. You keep searching and you can find, locally, those who can and will help. I don't live in LA or NYC , but with calm persistence my son has become a productive member of society. He has not done anything great - except being a loving son. If Ms. McCarthy used the foul language quoted in the book, I am not surprised people wouldn't listen to her.
    Ms. McCarthy does not mention the stress created with non-Asperger children (because she only had one child) who resent the time and attention parents must spend with the "special needs" child. That is a secondary, but very real problem.
    People with Aspergers are like every other "class". Some achieve greatness, like Temple Grandin, most functon reasonably well, and some have major problems.
    Finally, I contracted polio as a very young child. My Mother encountered many of the same difficulties with the "experts" as I did 30 years later. My mother was told that I had to have a procedure she found abhorrent. Thankfully, she refused. It took a while, but the medical experts later decried that procedure as barbaric. Life isn't fair. You can't rely solely on experts. Self reliance and common sense are the keys to success in everything. The answer is not found by blaming everyone who disagrees with you.

    8 out of 11 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 27, 2009

    Don't waste your money with this drama queen!!!

    There are tons of better books to read and learn about autism than this book. This lady is an egocentric drama queen who makes a guinea pig of her child and takes advantage of everybody who she comes in contact with. Don¿t waste your money!

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 14, 2008

    A reviewer

    Jenny needs new vocabulary. I was discusted with the language in this book. I continually shook my head as I continued reading this trashy, shallow attempt at a Mother's Journey in Healing Autism! As a father of an autistic son I would definitely discourage ANYONE from reading this book. It is of no value what-so-ever!

    4 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 21, 2007

    Providing public misinformation.

    The author tries to demonstrate how behaving wildly or using vulgar language will somehow get you the help or the answers you seek. Being a parent of child with autism is very hard, I know this first hand. Please don't misinform the public that it is so easy to 'heal autism' by changing their diet and wham bam it's all better. These children require constant ever changing therapy. This book would have held more credibilty by focusing only on her feelings. Jenny McCarthy is no medical professional, and the public is taking her opinion and experience as pure truth. Don't waste your money buying this book, instead donate your $23.95 to an organization helping children with autism.

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 30, 2007

    My brother is autistic...

    My brother is a 40+ year old autistic man. Every imaginable remedy scientifically tested and not has been tried by my family at any given point in his life to break down that autistic wall. The only thing that has helped him to become semi-self efficient and able to work outside the home is minutes/hours/days/weeks/years/decades of continual therapy and my mother's incredible ability to never get frustrated with him, his doctor's, or letting autism get the best of her. If changing the diet helped autism, there would never have been a need even for this book. I agree with the review below. I was so anxious to read this book and ended up more heart-broken and disappointed that it's nothing more than snake oil in words.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 1, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    An Informative But Slightly Unrealistic Look At Helping Your Autistic Child

    Recently, my son was diagnosed with High-Functioning Autism. And when I thought about how to find the answers I needed, my first thought was Jenny McCarthy. I knew she had written books on the subject, so I went straight out to B&N. I read both this book and "Mother Warriors." They are very similar, and I really don't think you need to buy both. Jenny's story is really empowering, and it's one that anyone raising an Autistic child can relate to. However, her son is a severe case, so I found that some of the information in the book did not apply to our situation. But that is to be expected. Also, Jenny McCarthty has a lot more money than the average person, so a lot of the treatment options she lays out for you in the book are not available to those of limited means. It would be great if we could afford to take our son to a specialized doctor, like she did, but we live paycheck to paycheck and have an HMO. Plus, we are really happy with the treatment he gets through Kaiser Permanente. Jenny is also an anti-vaccine Autism mother. And I am not saying that I don't believe that it could be a problem, but there is no proof that vaccines have anything to do with Autism. I believe that there is a lot about the genetics of it that we need to further explore because after we had my son evaluated, both my husband and brother-in-law were evaluated, and they were both diagnosed with it, as well; a fact that I was not surprised to hear after learning all I have about Autism. The book is a good starting place, and it does make you feel better about the diagnosis, and feel that there is hope. But I do worry that it is misleading some parents into thinking that they can receive all the treatments Jenny's son did, and that there is a definite answer as to why their children suffer from Autism. Still, I think it's wonderful that she wrote a book on the subject because she has really been an advocate for the parents out there who have been struggling with this for years. And I did find a lot of the information helpful.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 15, 2014

    Not a good book

    Vaccines do not cause autism spectrum disorders. Chelation diets are unhealthy and dangerous. Some of the treatments that the author endorses in this book are barbaric, cruel, and disproven. Autism Spesks-- the organization-- does not speak for any of us. Who are we? We are autistic spectrum disordered adults.

    Every child with autism who grows up becomes an adult with autism. Every child with Asperger's who survives long enough becomes an adult with Asperger's. Autism SQUEAKS ignores us adults because we are no longer cute. That may be just as well.

    There is no cure for us. We all have different ways of being. All of us deserve respect for who we are. Even those that the author refers to as "low functioning".

    Better books are out there. Read Temple Grandin or Tony Attwood or John Elder Robinson or pretty near anyone else instead.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 26, 2013

    BULL-CRAP

    I have autism and jenny knows NOTHING about it. Her poor son is not autistic, He was misdiognosed. All this former beauty queen wants us the popularity. Anyone can see that. She couldnt cure a cold if she tried, let alone autism. She has somehow twisted the minds of hundreds, leaving them beleiving her so called cures actually work; and her shoveling in the money. DONT WASTE A CENT ON THIS GARBAGE!!!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 8, 2013

    I keep wondering

    What will that kid be like when he reaches adolescence? And reality sinks in...

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 31, 2012

    This book is full of lies and crap on "causes" of Auti

    This book is full of lies and crap on "causes" of Autism. This woman, a washed up former Play Boy Bunny, is dumber than a bag of bricks and has NO CREDIBILITY behind her "theories" of Autism. This book is insulting and vulgar that is "supported" by false evidence. Do NOT waste your time, people!! ~SpEd Grad student.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 25, 2012

    Hate the book

    My child has autism and this book was a wast of my time. There nothing in this book that will help you. DON'T GET THE BOOK

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 5, 2010

    For parents of Austic Children you must read this

    I first read this book while serving in Iraq on my third tour. I have an Autistic son who is 7 years old. Even being in that enviroment, reading this book was the hardest thing i have ever done. I relived every up down and pain and smile I have experianced with my son. I literally had tears in my eyes on every page. I am on the other end of the spectrum situation as my ex-wife left. I have never been touched in the heart by a book like I was with this one.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2007

    Treatment Options are too Limiting

    I have a feeling that the only reason this book was published is because the author is a Hollywood 'personality' and because she has published before. I appreciate that she has brought attention to autism but her recommendations for treatment are not based on any scientific rigor. She continually bashes the medical community and wonders why everybody does not follow her recommended recipe for success. Autism is very complex. The treatment for autism is a multi-pronged approach. Jenny was expounding about a subject that was way beyond her knowledge base.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 26, 2007

    not-so-subtle anti-vaccination propaganda

    This book is disturbing in that it is in effect an endorsement of the anti-vaccination lobby. While on the one hand telling us that she is not against vaccination, Ms. McCarthy makes it clear in her book and numerous public appearances that it was vaccination that caused her son's autism. This is a direct quote from Ms. McCarthy on the Oprah Show and can be viewed on Oprah's web site. 'What number will it take for people just to start listening to what the mothers of children who have autism have been saying for years, which is, 'We vaccinated our baby and something happened. Right before his MMR shot, I said to the doctor, 'I have a very bad feeling about this shot. This is the autism shot, isn't it?' And he said, 'No, that is ridiculous. It is a mother's desperate attempt to blame something,' and he swore at me, and then the nurse gave [Evan] the shot. And I remember going, 'Oh, God, I hope he's right.' And soon thereafter-boom-the soul's gone from his eyes.' This type of statement, when repeated over and over has the effect of discouraging people from vaccinating their children, or from obtaining vaccinations themselves. This hardly shows the neutral viewpoint that Ms. McCarthy claims to have. There is no evidence that vaccinations cause autism. On the other hand, there is voluminous evidence against this idea. Communicating this anecdotal 'evidence' to you in her engaging way, results in rejection of the most effective public health measures in human history.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 9, 2012

    Highly Recommended

    Jenny McCarthy is an excellent writter, her book Louder than words is
    and excellent book and very informative.
    Anyone that has doubts should read this excellent book, it is helpfull
    and gives you alot of tips to check for in your child.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 8, 2011

    Highly Recommended

    I first read this book shortly after realizing my son had language delays at age 3. He has since been diagnosed with Autisum. Much like Jenny explains in her book. Finding answers and resources was quite a challenge. I actually had to resign from my position at work and took on this challenge full time. i found much comfort and knowledge in her perpective and intellect on the subject of autism from a parents view. It was easy to read and digest the info..instead of the other cold analytical material I have read. I would highly recommend reading this book if autisum has affected someone you love.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 25, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    It's all about attitude

    The "autistic" baby and "schizophrenic" baby may have common traits (pale, gentle, detached, undemanding) Autism presents itself early (toddler years) and schizophrenia generally presents between the ages of 15 and 25 for men and 25 to 35 for women. I believe that these two conditions are related although they present in different ways. Schizophrenia touches more people's lives than autism because it is much more prevalent in the population (typically 1% of the adult population versus less than 1%).

    Jenny McCarthy reaches the conclusion that doctors are relatively clueless in the basic understanding of the problem and that is why we (the collective mother) have to do our own research. I couldn't agree more. We learn to trust our instincts and always look for cause, something doctors do not do when they hand out autism and schizophrenia diagnoses. We are told that "nobody knows what causes this" but are told we have to accept something for which no medical test has been invented. We observe that attitude makes a huge difference and that some mothers are willing to go the extra, unpopular mile to find a solution for their child and others are not.

    Diet and supplements are a the main focus of the author's research (emphasis on yeast build-up and candida produced by a weakened immune system). Because her son recovered at the level of vitamin support and medications, Ms McCarthy does not explore, because she might not be aware of, or not subscribe to, the concept of higher levels of healing (psychic, spiritual, energetic). Some people (both autistic and schizophrenic) will be greatly improved or even cured through the diet and supplement approach, but many will not be. This seemingly chronic group continues to baffle medical science. There is often a lot more to the picture.

    Louder Than Words does not look at what I call the "dark side of the soul", to confront aspects of ourselves/our environment/our inheritance that may have contributed to the child's condition. In her book, Jenny McCarthy takes a poll of the mothers in her son's autism program. They are all unhappy in their marriages. She asks them who would divorce their husband if they could. Every hand in the room shot up. An understandable but superficial way of explaining this is that the child's illness is putting a strain on the parent's relationship. Energy medicine and other viewpoints would say that the child's illness is in essence holding a mirror up to a problem in the family energy field. It does not cause the problem, it reflects the problem.

    Jenny McCarthy believes that her son was born with a weakened immune system, but she stops asking why at this stage. From my own research I realized that my son was born with symptoms that may have predisposed him to schizophrenia and I asked "why"? This led me to a whole new area of very intriguing research. I developed my own belief that the root of the problem in my son's case lay in a trauma to the energy field. A misaligned energy field can be corrected in many different ways.

    I recommend this book because it demonstrates the attitude that is necessary to develop. Whether you are a fan of Jenny McCarthy or not, her attitude is what got her the kind of results that often elude other people. She recognizes that she could wait around forever for help that conventional medicine was failing to deliver. When it comes to your own child, why the wait?

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 18, 2010

    Any parent can relate to this book

    This book was very easy to read. You do not have to have a child with Autism to truly enjoy and appriciate this book. It was like sitting and listening to your best friend tell you a story, hard to say good bye and hard to put down. My heart ached along with hers and jumped for joy when a breakthrough was made. I do not know anyone close that has an autistic child but I have friends of friends.
    This book is a touching, funny, and smart. It made me want to research why Autism is such an epidemic and how fragile the human body really can be. Any parent can relate to this book and that unconditional love you feel for your child.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 25, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Louder than words...

    Informative

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 21, 2009

    Jenny makes some valid points and gives others some topics to think about in regards to autism, it's diagnosis and treatment. The perceptions of others and the stress on the family is also discussed truthfully.

    I found this book to be informative although it spoke about many controversial treatment options for young children on the autism spectrum. Told from Jenny's perspective it seemed honest and inventive and serves to show others how far a parent of a child with a disability may go to try and have the best possible outcome for their child.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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