A businessman whose son was diagnosed with autism, J.B. Handley co-founded the website Generation Rescue with his wife. It’s an autism advocacy site that has been highly effective in organizing a community of parents concerned about an autism-vaccine link. This is the edited transcript of an interview conducted on Jan. 29, 2010. It was originally published on April 27, 2010.
How did your life change when you discovered your son had autism?
Everything changed from the day it happened. It was an immediate nightmare. It was 30 days of six, seven, eight hours of nonstop crying by both me and my wife. It was the painful realization that my son may not have the kind of life that I expected for him. And once the grief had passed just enough to get up off the floor, it was a mandate to do whatever I could do with the rest of my life to give him the best possible life.