I don't believe vaccines cause autism, but I also don't consider autism a gift. I fall somewhere in the middle. A place where killing your autistic child is always, without excuse, WRONG, and a place where trying to force all parents to believe that autism is just a difference in neurology is also wrong. I sit in this middle chunk of belief, where hate doesn't exist, because these are our kids, and it just can't, but where the struggles are real. For both parent and child (I know, I know, parents don't matter, except they do.)
Sometimes I find myself skating the thin line between two extremes. Mostly because I have friends on both sides. People I love and admire, even if we don't always agree. Sometimes when I speak up about my own beliefs, I end up feeling guilty, because I truly never want to offend anyone. I hate thinking people are angry with me, to a fault.
However, because I try to avoid taking a side on some things, or immediately try to soothe someone I offend, I lose my own voice in the process. I've realized that as much as I try to appease those around me, this action isn't always reciprocal. If someone doesn't care about losing me as a friend, why should I bend over backwards keeping them happy? Because, honestly, when you're the only one trying to keep the peace, well, jokes on you, right?
Of course, there are things from which I don't back down, even now. Murder. Restraints/Seclusion. Abusive therapies. I just need to learn how not to back down on everything I believe. If I lose friends, I lose friends, but hopefully I'll gain respect, too. And confidence in myself.