Australian author Kathy Lette has revealed that she once considered hiring a sex worker for her autistic son.
In a candid piece written for The Mail on Sunday, Lette reveals her desperation at witnessing her son Julius’ isolation and loneliness because of his quirks.
Describing the now 26-year-old as a ‘Rainman’-type of personality who has a photographic memory but finds it difficult to read social situations, the popular writer says he has been knocked back and even bullied by girls.
“On and on they came, the endless everyday put-downs. One girl called him a ‘spaz’,” Lette wrote in the moving piece. “Another took him to a party simply so her friends could make fun of his colourful vernacular.”
Slumping in to severe depression by the age of 20, Lette describes how she and a fellow mother she had befriended through Britain’s National Autistic Society considered taking their sons to a brothel – hoping that the “temporary solace of sex” may boost their confidence.
So convinced by the idea was Lette that at one point she even took to kerb-crawling, looking for the perfect partner for Julius to lose his virginity to.
However, she confessed she couldn’t go through with it in the end.
“Just a few days later, I read that the father of an autistic teenaged boy had been arrested trying to pick up a prostitute for his lonely son, and I realised with a jolt that this could have been me.”
Happily, Julius found a girlfriend of his own aged 21 and has been in several happy relationships since.
“Some may condemn me morally for exploring the idea of prostitution,” she concludes. “But constant rejection and crippling loneliness is heartbreaking for parent and child alike. Why should they be denied the inalienable right to pursue love, happiness and human sexual contact?”
This article first published on New Idea.