Brendan Fraser's eldest son, 20-year-old Griffin, was diagnosed with autism at the age of 2, the actor shared.
Brendan Fraser made a transformational comeback and there's even chatter about an Oscar win, reported the New York Times.
Show News Today called it "Brenaissance" as the actor returned after a hiatus to act in The Whale. Now, Fraser has opened up about what it's like to be a parent to a child with autism.
He discussed his experiences of raising his son Griffin, 20, during a recent sitdown with Howard Stern on the SiriusXM radio show, The Whale actor, 54, spoke up about how he made efforts to reach out to people with autism at public events.
"There are just people who are, for whatever their personal reasons are, really fulfilled or happy to make your acquaintance, if only for a few moments. And I find that really gratifying and affirming, and sometimes there are those who I can clock from across a convention room hall, who I can tell right away, 'He's on the spectrum'," the actor shared.
“And even if he doesn't ride him, just give him a brush. The horse loves it, the repetitive motion that kids on the spectrum have that they love. And it just works…"— Cameron Cawthorne (@Cam_Cawthorne) February 22, 2018
Brendan Fraser offered his horse the job of helping take care of his son with autism.https://t.co/SPRBLcwIuA
"You know that there's somebody who needs a little more love, a little more time because they're autistic or they have Aspergers, and this is their world. This is where they belong," he continued. "No matter all of the noise surrounding the hysteria that goes into the whole celebrity bulls***, I always, always stop the train to have a moment with them," he added.
He further explained, "Because my oldest son is autistic, and I know how meaningful it is to their families and to them. It means a lot to feel like you can gratify someone just by showing up, it means a lot."
Stern said that with many parents of children with autism that he's spoken to over the years, there is fear of who would take care of the children after they lose both parents, per PEOPLE.
"What can we do other than give ourselves a break and muddle our way through it together and do what works and do what works until it doesn't work anymore, and then find something new," Fraser said.
He also spoke in detail about the struggles parents face in advocating for their children with autism. "You will have to fight with school boards. Yes, there will be weird people that you meet along the way that have a completely different agenda compared to what the purpose of sending a kid to a special needs school is."
"You're going to encounter a lot of really colorful people and how you navigate that comes down to how much you know that everything's going to be okay," Fraser said. "You must believe that in spite of it."
Fraser also shared how he responded to his son's diagnosis. "When I found out my kid's diagnosis at 22 or 24 months, I was crestfallen, to say the least. The first reaction that I had was, 'I want to know how to fix this. What's the cure? What does this mean?' " he said.
Autism Parents Brendan Fraser Gets Emotional as He Talks About Son with Autism: 'Wouldn't Have It Any Other Way' #autismparents #autism #autismawareness #autismfamily #autismacceptance #autismmom #autismlove #autismsupport #autismlif https://t.co/5UIgA5Ibbz— SmartchoiceList (@SmartchoiceList) February 8, 2023
"Then you learn quickly that, I wouldn't have any other way," Fraser noted. "This kid has the most joy onboard of anyone I know, and he happens to be related to me as my son. I want to know what he thinks is so gut-bustlingly funny all day long, in a genuine way, he's cracking himself up. He loves to go for a ride in the car. It doesn't matter where you're taking him," he added.
Fraser, who shares three sons, including Griffin, with ex-wife Afton Smith, shared his experiences as a parent bravely and many people will relate to it.
Cover Image Source: Getty Images | Matt Winkelmeyer