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Jenny McCarthy on Beating Autism

Jenny McCarthy on Beating Autism

In the latest issue of Us Weekly, Jenny McCarthy tells her heartwarming story about how her son is beating autism.

Battling doctors, a failed marriage and her own guilt, the 35-year-old actress tells how her son Evan recovered from autism. Jenny said, “When he finally hugged me I prayed, ‘Please God don’t let this be the only time’.”

In related news, former Rescue Me star Denis Leary writes that autism is a joke in his new book, “Why We Suck: A Feel-Good Guide to Staying Fat, Loud, Lazy and Stupid”. Here’s an excerpt from the 51-year-old actor’s book:

“There is a huge boom in autism right now because inattentive mothers and competitive dads want an explanation for why their dumb-ass kids can’t compete academically, so they throw money into the happy laps of shrinks . . . to get back diagnoses that help explain away the deficiencies of their junior morons. I don’t give a [bleep] what these crackerjack whack jobs tell you – yer kid is NOT autistic. He’s just stupid. Or lazy. Or both.”

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  • Sarah May

    Thats horrible what that man wrote. It’s so not true. I hate it when people talk like that on subjects they are not well informed on.Autism is real.

  • brett

    That’s kinda funny actually, but somewhat that man wrote is true, people just throw money on shrinks and belive all the things he/she says.. I call the parents stupid.

  • Shoops

    Can you “cure” autism??

  • belle

    Autism is real and there is NO CURE for autism. All scientific research says the same. People are making up stuff without really knowing the facts!!

  • dara

    Yikes, D. Leary comment is really insensitive.
    personally, I think there needs to be alot more testing for Autism. Most parents who are advocates beleive immunizations are the main casue of kids mutation of Autism. I’m not so sure I beleive this, but maybe with more info, It could become clearer. All my kids were immunized, and I HATE when there are kids in their classes that aren’t, becuase of parents who fear the Autism diagnosis.

  • Shoops

    Maybe I meant “recover”, not cure. Can you recover from autism the way one recovers from a cold or the flu? If anyone can shed light on this…

  • Zana

    I agree completely. That man obviously doesn’t know anything.
    Kids with autism usually show signs of it as toddlers. What, are they stupid and lazy then?
    I agree with Sarah May, that man is a jerk. Then, he probably just wrote the book to provoke people and to get some attention, not because he knows anything about autism.

    Also, I think it’s wrong that the article says that her son “recovered from autism”. Autism isn’t like a cold, that you get medicine for and then you recover.
    I am very happy that he gets help and that his mum gets help, but it’s not right to say that he “recovered from autism”.

    Having a child with autism is very difficult (depending on where on the “autism scale” the child is, of course), but it is also very difficult for the child itself, because there are so many things that you – according to society – is supposed to know, that an autistic person doesn’t know and that is very confusing and scary for them.

    This boy seems like such a sweet kid and I am so happy that he and his mum can get help. They look very happy together :)

  • Ha!

    Autism and various forms of autism may be overdiagnosed, as is ADD and ADHD, but Denis Leary should keep his piehole shut. There is no reason to generalize so insensitively about something that IS real and affects many people on a very personal level. A three-year-old is lazy and stupid? WTF? Obviously he has no personal experience with people who are truly autistic and, until he does, he should keep his uninformed, bad attempts at humor to himself.

  • naty

    The men that wrote that book is the biggest idiot of all, what he said is not only very stupid but offensive.

  • Maria (Shorty)

    Denis is a JERK! Very insensitive to parents who don’t have the monies to be able to help their children they way they would like. What a complete W.A.N.K.E.R!!!

  • lisa

    wow, well he has always been a jerk so no surprise there! Agree with pp’s that he is definitely a wanker!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • me

    Autism diagnosis can be lost. I work as a therapist for children who have autism and many children with autism are very high functioning. After intervention or therapy some children lose the diagnosis.

    As for Dennis Leary, I understand that a lot more children are being diagnosed with autism now and he may live under a rock so he doesn’t understand that it is because of new testing that we are able to diagnose cases earlier than before, but the guy needs to shut up. Don’t talk about things you don’t understand a$$hole.

  • angie

    Instead of changing our attitudes as a society and recognizing the needs of individuals with Autism, we are publishing insignificant and pointless books. Clearly, the editors are not doing their jobs.

  • jmo

    you go girl.


    Way to kill your career!!

  • andamentothat

    Dennis Leary shouldnt be saying those things.. he seemed more compassionate than that..

  • Aelys

    Leary’s comment is stupid and rude.

    As for Jenny, how on earth could her son suddenly recover from an illness there’s no cure for? He probably made eprogress, but I highly doubt he’s “cured”

  • Canadian autistic MOM

    i cant not believe a man would actually say that i am so upset and crying right now that a movie star would have the nerve to even say that about a subject he doesnt know about…i hope someone hoofs him a good one right in the balls and i hope he chokes on them too…that is so night right…my daughter isnt stupid and lazy shes a gr8 kid and doesnt deserve to be talked abotu that way….DENNIS LEARY U CAN GO TO HELL!!!!!!!!!!!

  • dialectic

    i LOVE you denis leary!
    im sick of stupid parents saying their kid is autistic when they are not! autism is serious ,just because your kid is stupid or slow doesnt mean he/she is autistic. there are clear signs of what constitutes autism and it is not “my kid wants to play video games all day and doesnt like school” that just means they are normal.

    jenny mccarthy needs to go back to taking her clothes off for money,you cant cure autism and for her to say she has is offensive and misleading .


    this woman is full of bull shit!
    There is no cure for it!
    Sorry honey

  • No teacher

    Dennis Leary is dumb.Rude. That was really insensitive. Autism is real. There is notcure. Maybe Denis was trying to make a point and heshould have said it Isaid just said.

    Now, JennyMc is doing some good work there. She may have some validity there. Diet makes you what you act and fucntion like. Some immunizations can wait for a child to getolder, but I believe they are needed by pre-school- kinder age.

    HOWEVER,there is NOCURE for Autism. Autism has a broad, big spectrum. I worked as a Special Ed Pre-K Teacher’s Paraprofessional, and it is a big spectrum. Evan is not cured.maybe he is high functioning. maybe changing his diet has helped him so much. great. He will always be Autistic.

  • Paula

    I think Leary was confusing autism with ADD/ADHS (hopefully, anyway). And, it is correct, there is no cure for autism – despite Ms. McCarthy’s claims and wishes to the contrary. What she did for her son is remarkable, but her theories won’t/don’t work for those children afflicted with more severe cases of autism. She needs to understand this and get on board with promoting further research. And and, lord above, she needs to get off this bandwagon about vaccines. Can you imagine the health issues we would have in this country if families failed to get their children vaccinated?

  • My opinion…

    Autism is a “real” diagnosis when diagnosed properly, efficiently and effectively.
    There are alot of “false” diagnosis (to which DL may have been referring) when docs are at a “loss” as to explain a particular child’s “behavior”- which absolutely could have nothing to do with the “real” issue of an autism diagnosis- therefore the “controversy” surrounding this.
    I don’t care what JM has to say- her throwing out this business of “curing” autism will undoubtedly give alot of parents’ dealing with this day in and day out “false hope” regarding their particular situation.
    Autism CANNOT be “cured”- it is a brain disorder that CANNOT be reversed, cured, etc… there is a huge spectrum/”umbrella” to an autism diagnosis- some kids can be “high” functioning (Aspereger’s syndrome), “mid”-functioning, or “low” functioning.
    I’ve really never had any respect or appreciation for this woman and now with her coming out with “claims” of “curing” autism, my opinion of her has just lessened completely. If you are going to come out with such “wild” claims- back it up with scientific/tangible evidence. Yes, we all want to do what is best for our children and to help them thrive to the best of their abilities, etc.. but to give such false hopes to those who are dealing with this day in and day out is such a slap in the face.

  • erika

    I have not read the article yet. Is Jenny’s son, Evan, still receiving therapy?

  • kayceda

    Everyone said what I would say. I have two children on the Autism Spectrum. They received intensive therapy and now, as young teens, are doing social skills and life skills programs. People with Autism can create adaptive behaviours, learning what is social acceptable or not. I read Jenny McCarthy’s book and she states it is her story….but, I agree that she gives false hope. Her son is getting better because he has received intensive therapy, as all children with Autism do, but to say he has “recovered” is nonsense. It is a brain disorder; all about the wiring of the brain. And, she has ALOT of money to do these intensive therapies.

  • Rayt

    Wtf. Dumb ass kids? Moronic? What a bitch.

  • Denis leary is WRONG

    Although I applaud Jenny M. for her efforts in bringing awareness to Autism, I think at the same time that her comments can give a false sense of hope to parents dealing with children on the Autistic Spectrum.

    Yes, there are many interventions that have done wonders for Autistic children. With those interventions there can be incredible progress. Children that lived in a dark world, have a sense of light now.

    However, despite all of the interventions, social skills classes, speech therapy, occupational therapy………there is not, as of yet, a cure for Autism.

    As for D. Leary…………………………………………words cannot begin to describe how stupid, insenstive, and utterly wrong his comments are. It seem to me, that he made comments that he knew would outrage not only parents with an autistic child, but any person with common sense. In an effort to sell a book? Without Mr. Leary making those comments I never would have blinked twice passsing his book in a store, nor read one article about him, or this book on the web.

    Many methods are employed by publishers to have their book in the press. However, to publish a book with such outrageous statements is wrong.

  • lonestar

    Leary has always done sarcastic comedy. I wouldn’t get too upset until you read the entire book not just an quote from it. A book with that title means to provoke something from readers. Autism has no cure but is most definitely over-diagnosed like ADD and many other
    conditions. Let’s hope all children (and adults) with autism have the
    ability to advance to their full potential with proper treatment.

  • shea

    I am happy Jenny’s son is doing well, but there is no “cure” for autism. Her son is obviously very high functioning and Jenny is going around saying he “beat it” and he is recovered- that is really misleading especially for parents who have children with autism. I think using words like that give false hope to some parents who may have children who are lower functioning with autism. this is a slippery slope and she should be advised not to make such blanket statements about a very serious and REAL disorder such as autism.

  • shea

    Oh and about Dennis Leary’s comments, well he is a BIG A S S for saying such horrible things about autism. He obviously does not know anyone with the disability nor does he know anything about it! What a pathetic man.


  • http://justjared miffed_33

    I saw Jenny on Oprah and my first thoughts when I aw the clip of her son was BULLSHIT he does NOT have autism! For one thing he has smiling eyes-the kids I have seen with this disease are void of feeling in their eyes. I thought why is this chick doing this? My son has Aspergers which is a mild form of Autism and her son was nothing like him. I think she is attention seeking.

  • *sigh*

    Like every other “disease”/”illness” out there…it is added to the ever growing list of illnesses being over diagnosed. Sure. It is REAL. But it seems in the last 5 or 6 years I’ve known more “autistic” children than I have “normal” and healthy children. Parents are also a lot lazier these days. I knew a woman who refused to teach her child anything. She claimed “that is what kindergarten will be for.” So he went into school not even knowing his ABC’s. Then for years she desperately tried getting him diagnosed as autistic because his teachers said he was slow and very anti-social. End of the story…he was diagnosed autistic. Coincidence that she just happened to be a shitty lazy parent? You tell me. Or actually, don’t. Common sense tells me.

    I find it funny that a woman like Garth cares now so much about her child but in one of her useless mainstream parenting books, she laughed about mutilating her child’s penis. Idiot! Women like that should not give birth. No wonder this child has problems.

  • two words

    Two Words: Us-Weekly.
    Pretty much sums it up… nothing more to say, really.

  • Abdulla

    Denis Leary is a f***ing idiot! Someone should sue his ass and take every penny from this f***er! He knows nothing about autism!

  • sienna

    Autism is real.. I’d be really upset if I read those from Leary and if I had an autistic child.
    I think what Jenny meant he was able to interact. Many autistic children just live in their own world. For a mother, even being called “mom” means the world as some children just repeat some words. They dont really communicate.

  • eddie jones

    first of all we all have to have understanding of illnesses that exist both physical and mental. However with peoples assumingly rude and ignorant comments about autism you have to take a look at the entire picture. You have mccarthy here,as far as I know her life wasn’t one of science and being involved in medical science. As far as I can remember she made her life around her looks and while that’s fine, it doesn’t really qualify her to make attacks against those that may also be mis-informed about the science. Real science has proven that the majority of autistic cases are not correctly diagnosed and when you have numbers stated from big pharma stating that 1 in 3 children may/could be diagnosed with autism you have to ask yourself, is this real or a way to pander drugs? Well I think you can make your own decision. If Autism is as big as it’s said to be it doesn’t have any real merit because years ago we sure didn’t have this many autistic reports, it wasn’t until big pharma got it’s hands in the peddling of drugs to children that now everyone has it. If Jennys Kid has it, then god bless her and the child, but for hollywood to speak out against people they both show their absolute ignorance.

  • Good Victoria

    WAY TO GO NUMBER # 18……


    Dennis Leary’s comments are disgusting and vile. He is an example of all that is wrong in society. As a father himself you would think that he would have compassion for other parents that deal with any child that has a disability, whether it be physical or mental.

    I am a mother of a three year old autistic girl and have read Jenny McCarthy’s book, Mother Warriors and nowhere in there does she say that her son is recovered or cured, she says he is recovering. Recovering the developmental skills of neurotypical children his age. My daughter is also slowly recovering some of the skills she lost and she is beautiful inside and out, which is more than I can say for Mr. Dennis Leary.

  • kimmy kibler

    You can’t beat autism. You have it for life. That washed up guy who wrote that book is loving all the people keeping his name in the spotlight. Very sick man.

  • non

    I am sorry but “recovering from autism” doesn’t exist.
    You are autistic or you’re not.
    You can learn to cope with it (or parents can learn to cope with it) but it is not an illness. It is how someone is and always will be.

  • jen

    I do know from personal experience that we as parents should NEVER take any one persons diagnosis alone. We should never say one illness is never curable.
    My child almost went on a drug that had side effects that were very dangerous. Only later to be found that she was allergic to milk.

    Later they said she was ADD and that turned out to be a sugar issue.

    I would love to tell them she is graduating at the top of her class in college now and without their drugs .

    All it took was the help of a healthy diet!

  • anonymous-brunette


  • me

    miffed_33 – Wow. You say you have a child on the spectrum and then you go on to say that children who have autism are “void of feeling” in their eyes. You are an ignorant moron if you truly believe this. Please look into this before making such stupid comments again.

    MANY children who have autism are incredibly loving and show lots of feeling with their eyes.

    Honestly, I’d think that a parent with a child on the spectrum would know better. Leads me to believe you’re full of crap.

  • j

    jenny mccarthy is just trying to sell her book people. she didn’t overcome autism, her child was treated intensively by therapists trained in behavioral intervention which was successful. she doesn’t credit any of the therapists who worked for hundreds of hours with her child to retrain his behavior and integrate him into appropriate social behavior. i know who these therapists are, and it is quite sad that she is promoting herself without even acknowledging the services that helped her son become integrated into normal schooling. often times parents want to treat their children lovingly like their normal children but only end up reinforcing the unsocial behavior. these parents who need to find something to do to help their child will blame other factors like diet, blood sugar issues, bad teachers, and think that if they LOVE THEM ENOUGH and FIGHT WITH EVERYONE IN THE WORLD that they will overcome their problems… and then what do you know, the results of the therapy start showing, and then the parents can say “hey i did it!” and pat themselves on the back. its a tough journey to go through, but it does cloud a parent’s logic when its their beloved child who has problems that can’t be solved by the parents alone.

  • Irishjess

    I think that Dennis Leary is trying to stir up the same pot that Mike Savage did MONTHS ago,and unfortunately he’s giving all the same bs that Savage ranted about on his radio show. I have an 8 year old son with Asperger’s ( a form of autism that is high functioning ) and I didn’t get him diagnosed so that I could make excuses as to why he won’t be like the other children or because he’s not as smart. He’s the exact opposite of what Dennis Leary points out, he’s in a NORMAL class room doing better than the typical children are academic wise and he makes friends and I don’t think one gets their child diagnosed because the child is LAZY…. C’mon Dennis wake up and realize not many people give a care about you and stop trying to drum up attention in the wrong way…. From one Irish person to another, you should feel ashamed of yourself!

  • mauren

    I love this website but this post is simply tasteless. Not only are the comments from Dennis Leary insensitive and disturbing the fact that included them in such a happy and inspiring article really eats at your credibility and likability.

  • tan

    So Dennis Leary is just stupid and not autistic?!?!?!

    I hope he was trying to make a joke in a round about way. Because some parents do make excuses for their childrens’ ill behaviour. We will soon be faced with a generation of people who have been raised to not be accountable or deal with consequences. It is quite scary and puzzling at the same time.

  • Jackie

    I hope she doesn’t believe the headlines. There is no cure for austism. Just being able to go to school and learning and mainstreaming. That helps but is not a cure.

  • http://willbeupbynextweek Tracey leonard

    Leary needs to spend time with an autism family before he opens his big mouth again. WHAT A LOSER!!!!!

  • Kimberly


    Please, stop publishing your ignorance.

    A loving sister of an autistic child.