"The Autism Whisperer"
Pierre has 30 years of experience and is one of the best Professional Homeopaths effectively reversing Autism today..
He is known as “The Autism Whisperer” and he has achieved a great number of successful reversals.
The reversals Pierre has accomplished for others’ Autistic children – He can accomplish for yours.
30 Years of Experience
registered member of the North American Society of Homeopaths
certified by the Council on Homeopathy Certification
Known as "The Autism Whisperer"
"Autism Whisperer" Pierre Fontaine Interviewed In The 2022/vol.28 Issue Of "The American Homeopath"
AUTISM: THE (ALMOST) FORGOTTEN EPIDEMIC: An Interview with the “Autism Whisperer”, Pierre Fontaine, CCH, RHom
By Alicja Pasek-Smith, PhD, CHom
Current pandemic overshadows many chronic health conditions that still pose a big threat to the public health, like autism. In the USA alone the rate of autism has been exponentially growing over last few decades, reaching numbers from 1 in 10,000 children in year 1965 1, to 1 in 150 in year 2000, and 1 in 54 according to the newest official data 2. In the recent years autism cases have been increasing almost every single year 3. As the result, today autism is one of the most prevalent health problems in children and also one of the most difficult to treat, with no known causes or treatments recognized by the mainstream medicine. This puts a lot of pressure, and cost, on the families often desperately looking for help elsewhere, including from homeopathy.
Autism is called Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) because it ranges from mild to severe, but in any presentation it is characterized by restricted interests, repetitive behaviors, and impairments in social interaction and in communication 4. People with mild or also called high functioning autism, can pretty well function in life with proper alteration of lifestyle (i.e. diet, routine) and lesser or bigger accommodations in schools and workplaces. Some may be considered gifted or geniuses in certain area, although this is very rare, and even then, there is still significant trouble with some basic life skills. On the other end of the spectrum are people who require a lot of support but sometimes can only barely function even with the support. In extreme cases they need 24/7 care, are incapable of attending to their basic needs like feeding, going to toilet or dressing themselves, and may have many diseases, often very painful, debilitating and/or life-threatening. One of the main features of severe autism is absence of any form of communication, not only speech, but even gesturing or pointing, what makes it very difficult to effectively help these people. In between these two extremes of severe and high functioning, lays the whole “spectrum of autism”. What all people affected by ASD have in common is struggling with social isolation and capacity to live independently, although to a different degree 5. Because of this, autism affects the lives not only of those who suffer from it, their families and schools, but also the whole society. In this article I am presenting what homeopathy has to offer for autism as seen by Pierre Fontaine, CCH, RSHom, who has specialized in treating autism in his practice for 27 years and who is known to many of his clients as the “Autism Whisperer”.
APS: It is not common in homeopathy to be recognized by a nickname. How did you come to become the “Autism Whisperer”?
PF: Laugh. Autism cases have been from the very beginning the center of my practice which I started in 1994. At that time, nothing existed for autism. Parents were very much left on their own to search the internet for solutions. The medical scene was dominated by “DAN” (Defeat Autism Now), which morphed into “biomed”. It may not seem important, but the “biomed” was supposed to be a movement away from medications, using instead natural supplements, herbs, mega doses of vitamins and minerals, etc. But then doctors, given the severity of what they were seeing, went back to antibiotics, antifungals and other meds. Instinctively, parents were looking solutions other than allopathy, and some were coming to my practice, but along with my patients I was suffering from a lack of homeopathic VIABLE solutions. I spent years languishing and asking very fundamental questions. Then, about fifteen years ago, I had a Eureka moment that lead to a new approach to case-taking which I named Surrogacy. It was a big leap. Suddenly, a child without speech could “speak”… through a “surrogate”. A couple of weeks later a blogging mom came, and as the result of Surrogacy her child got rapidly better. The rest is history. A very large number of parents were following her blog and were introduced to this different approach. I emphasized depth of case taking, “reaching into and through the child”. I was “a new kid on the block” and many parents started bringing their kids to me. One day I received a phone call and the mom said, “I need to speak to “The Autism Whisperer”. It turned out that it was how these parents referred to me in their group. I was very deeply touched when I learned about it. I felt very grateful and a very deep sense of validation of time spent dedicated to autism.
APS: Before we go deeper into the Surrogacy Method, let’s start with your understanding of autism. How do you see it now after almost three decades of treating it with homeopathy?
PF: The best word that fits autism is “chaos”. Keeping things in order is extremely important to control the chaos, the pain and the general sense of not being present. Autism is chaos in body and mind. Indeed, this is why I see autism as a Stage 12, Cancer Miasm disorder. Though autism is Stage 12, not all cases need a Stage 12 remedy all the time, but for sure at least one Stage 12 remedy will make a big impact at some point in the case. So much of autism symptomology shows Stage 12 characteristics: the famous lining up of toys and other so-called ritualistic behaviors, or tantruming when the routine is disrupted. It is all a control mechanism of Stage 12. Another factor indicating autism is Stage 12 Cancer Miasm disorder is the fact that it affects many and all organs and systems. The whole organism is in disorder. It affects the immune system with kids getting sick every week, the muscular-skeletal system with low muscle tone, the nervous system with distorted senses and no speech, the digestive system with diarrhea or constipation, just to give a few examples. All other diseases affect just one or couple systems and organs and they follow certain biological order, even cancer takes time to metastasize. In autism the whole body and mind are in chaos all the time. This is what makes it particularly difficult to treat, because it is hard to see a pattern in the symptoms, it is difficult to make sense out of the entire case in a chaotic state.
One difficulty of treating autism is having to face the immense pain that these children experience. Some of the cases I have treated were really, really bad. I mean, all day banging head so hard that it shakes the floor. You don’t see such behavior even in the most severe cases of migraine! Extreme abdominal pain and burned skin from repetitive diarrhea. Pain of severe constipation or vomiting dozens times a day, sometimes lasting for years and not relieved by any allopathic medication. Incessant jumping and repetitive behaviors to numb the pain. Or sleeplessness allowing for only one hour, or less, of sleep in a 24 hours period forcing the child to stay up spending their time roaming around the house, watching YouTube videos or in other ways distracting themselves from pain. Even children who look “completely happy being alone in their own bubble” do so because they need to be alone to control their pain and they learn to keep others away by producing an outer image of being content. Just looking at people is painful !!! In addition there is emotional pain that is overlooked by most people. Most of these children know “there is something wrong with me. They often hear their parents and doctors talking about their problems and shortcomings in front of them when attending endless visits to the doctors and therapists. Stage 12 condition do not want to have anything wrong with them, they want to be “perfect”, to keep everything under control. Most of the kids with autism are fighting to do that, to overcome their limitations and be able to function like everybody else. We accept “Perfection” as devoid of imperfection. That is not perfection, that is over control. Perfection by definition accepts short comings hence the difference between Stage 10 and 12. So 20 years ago I said, “Autism is a very painful condition, physically and emotionally”. You see, autism is such a profound disconnect that nobody had ever thought about it.
APS: When treating autism, and especially difficult cases, how do you define a success? What kind of results do you aim for?
PF: First of all, I assess every case by using what I call a “tree-legged-stool of autism”. I came to see that the three main problems in autism can be brought down to the difficulty with eye contact, spontaneous speech and spontaneous interaction. When starting each case, I grade these three skills on a scale 0-10 and then look for increasing the child’s abilities in all three areas. For example, a child starting with zero eye contact, zero spontaneous interaction and zero speech will show improvement when becomes more present in the physical world, wanting to be with the family and then begin to speak. The speech may develop from “I want”, then commenting about what he sees and feel, and so on. It is a long process and I divide it into two phases. At the end of Phase 1 the child is essentially functioning. He or she can speak, interacts with people, and functions in school on their own without an aid. For most people that is a recovered case and to a large degree I can agree but why not aim for more? The Phase 2 brings depth to the child’s life so the life can be richly experienced by ability to express emotions, having meaningful relationships, feeling comfortably in own body and life etc. Of course, there is overlap of Phase 2 with Phase 1, but my point is that we should continue the cure beyond the basic minimum, to reach the state of health as described by Hahnemann in the Organon Aphorism #9.
APS: Surrogacy Method became a major breakthrough in the way you approach cases of severe autism. Let’s make it clear: we are talking about cases where there are either little symptoms beyond those typical for autism diagnosis (but often to extreme degree, like for example, self-injurious behavior or constant focus on one activity), or on the other hand, there are countless severe problems and many additional diagnoses, each bringing its own set of issues. These are also often cases of older children or adults who did not respond to years of intense therapies and other treatments, and whose original state is very much obscured by years-long use of strict diets, medications, behavioral interventions, and other therapies used to manage their symptoms. If you say that chaos is the main characteristic of autism, then I’d say, a case of severe autism with a long history of many interventions is even beyond chaotic. And then, on top of that, these people usually don’t speak so don’t have ways to communicate what is really troubling them physically, mentally and emotionally. They cannot tell you about their dreams, fears, or even physical pain and its location, duration, sensation, causation, etc. They cannot explain their “weird” reactions and behaviors. In short, they cannot give you any information that we usually get in the process of case-taking to be able to provide truly individualized treatment that homeopathy is supposed to offer in order for it to be effective. There is little we can rely on to differentiate the remedies that may be indicated based on what we can observe and get from the parents – which both are subjective and can be misleading. I apologize for this long introduction to my next question, but now when we have a clear picture of what “severe autism” is from the homeopathic perspective, please tell us how the Surrogacy Method can help?
PF: This is perfectly said but you see, we feel it is the lack of speech that makes it difficult but that is not the case, the chaos is the quality that increases the difficulty. This is the reason why all cases of autism are very challenging. Even if the child can talk it is still difficult to find the pattern in the disease that is so chaotic. But both these obstacles can be, to a large extend, overcome.
First, there is Surrogacy stemming from the need to bring voice to the children who cannot speak. This is done by conducting the interview with the person representing the child as if he or she were the child. In essence, anybody with love for the child could surrogate. This instantly resolves the problem of adopted children and various other situations. The parent is usually the best candidate as a surrogate, especially the mother whom I call “the first witness” because of the unique bond she can develop during pregnancy. Most mothers in pregnancy feel a state which is of the child they carry in their womb. This is why I ask about the mother’s experiences from that time. But then, I also ask the surrogate to put aside her own thoughts and feelings and to step into the present state of the child. The surrogate process is designed to bring out the experience from the child’s perspective. It is no longer a parent’s outside observation, the child literally speaks through the surrogate. It is no longer “I guess” or “I think”. When the surrogate has availed him- or herself to the process, there cannot be any mistake that the child is actually speaking of his own experience of autism. I’ve had surrogate become physically sick just like the child. This is not an easy process. First, because experiencing the pain, of one’s own child is emotionally difficult. It is very challenging, but the silver lining is that when done well, parents invariably are grateful for knowing how it actually feels for their child.
Second, our conditioning keeps people from attempting surrogacy and flat out refuse to go that way. We are made to believe that we are separate and different to the point of being unable to understand and even more so to experience somebody else’s inner experience.
Thirdly, some people are very afraid of making a mistake and just can’t let go of the voice that says “this does not make sense”. But in reality, most people can easily surrogate and loving and dedicated parents are best at it.
The implications of Surrogacy for severe autism cases are clear. It gives the same opportunity for healing as in the cases when a person can speak for him- or herself. It allows us to get to the core of autism cases just like in neurotypical cases and by doing it enables to find truly the most indicated remedy from the whole Materia Medica, as opposed to being limited to a handful of remedies that were commonly used for autism before I started using Surrogacy.
After using surrogacy, which is like casting a big net, I came to realize the second part of success. I’ve been recognizing tiny but significant clues in cases that encompass the entire case. Using single rubrics to solve the case. For example, a case of child who was making a tiny motion with a finger. While other remedies moved him forward, it was only once it was pointed out to me that he “hates his father” that that case leaped forward in a big way. I gave Boron. Another case of a girl who loved very loud music, very spicy food, everything she liked was to extreme, very intense. The mom made a point about strong old cheese, the smellier the better: Generalities, Food and drinks, cheese, desires, old, strong [Complete Repertory 2020]. This girl was also very temperamental. There is an exuberance which the remedy Asterias rubens reflected in the rubric.
So, the Surrogacy opens up the whole Materia Medica for autism cases, but then the single rubric approach substantially limits the choices and can easily point to the right remedy. It’s like opposite approach seemingly contradictory, but actually it works pretty well. By the way, I am working on my next book entitled “The Language of Autism” which will include this approach of single rubrics. This is my third book on homeopathy and the second one on autism.
APS: Speaking of your books. In “One heart, One Mind” you make it clear how devastating autism can be for the whole family, emotionally, financially, and otherwise. Oftentimes the entire family is for years focused on managing the child’s health issues, behavior, therapies, doctors visits, and so on. This does not create an optimal environment for healing, and I think this fact is all too often overlooked when treating autism. Can you talk about the strategies you found helpful to support the parents and at the same time enhance the child’s recovery by addressing the family dynamic?
PF: This is an important question. Too often as homeopaths we focus only on choosing the remedy and then managing the case, not addressing anything else beyond the child’s condition. Since the very beginning I have told parents “I do this as much for you as for your child” because taking care and living with a child on the spectrum is very difficult. For example, this week a couple told me that they could not remember the last time they had gone shopping together, one of them always needed to stay with their daughter. I’ll skip excruciating decisions other parents have shared with me.
Parental stress is enormous, the divorce rate is sky high, and all of it is made much worst because of what is called “the window of opportunity” that says that the child can recover only before age of 8 when “the window of opportunity” closes. This creates enormous pressure for parents of young kids and then guilt for those of older children if they did not recover. To ease the parental load, I make sure to let them know “the window of opportunity” is to a large extend false. I also try to impress upon parents that their children always have reasons for their behaviors and reactions no matter how weird or challenging they might be, like for example aggression when the child is being pushed too far for too long. Just remembering this simple fact can ease a lot of stressful situations. These kids are not in a good health to begin with and often cannot deal with what for everybody else seems “normal”, and for a child without speech the only way of communicating this fact is behavior. Or… developing physical symptoms or illnesses. Frequent acute ailments are very common in autism. That brings me to another way of supporting the parents by making myself available for them free of charge at any time in case an acute condition develops. This helps me to quickly stop the illness in its tracks and gives the parents peace of mind knowing that there’s somebody ready to pick up the phone and help them in such a situation.
APS: It looks like specializing in autism lead you to develop a whole new way of practicing homeopathy. Is it different now than when you started your homeopathic career 27 years ago?
PF: Autism totally changed everything but not the fundamentals of homeopathy. With autism, everything had to be figured out. Take a case of arthritis or lupus or Crohn’s, other minor interests of mine. There is biological order to them, and we know what to expect in terms of possible complications or direction of cure. They are predictable and for us homeopaths it is reassuring because these diseases won’t take us far, if at all, outside of our comfort zone. Autism is a complete chaos, there is no order, so at any step or point in the case there can be a disaster. For example, when I was in the School of Homeopathy, Devon, UK, we were told that a cold is cathartic to the body, no need to do anything which is true. But when a child on the spectrum gets a simple common cold or cough, he might regress and/or be affected FOR MONTHS. This can be devastating. For this reason, I am available for my clients at all times. I no longer stick only to giving a single dose of the remedy and having a follow up in a month, but request to be contacted as only any problem appears. I cannot imagine now practicing other way. There is much more involvement with autism, one has to be always there, vigilant and nitpick at the case to prevent the case from declining.
APS: Any more words of wisdom that might be helpful for dealing with autism cases?
PF: Well, yes, there is so much to say about autism. It is truly a whole onto itself.
One needs to commit to these children. The way I practice is very demanding, but the results are very rewarding. I would never trade this for the world. I am still learning and will keep looking for new ways to help.
Second, you need to do whatever it takes to solve the case. Every case is different. Not everybody is available for Surrogacy. Not in every case there will be this one rubric I can use to find the remedy. I like to use Plant Theory and Periodic Table. Whatever works for the particular case is the way to go but I don’t yield to blanketing with nosodes and vaccine remedies, of course UNLESS they are truly indicated for the case.
Third, it must be remembered that healing Autism is a marathon, not a sprint, though I never cease to be amazed at how quickly an autism case can turn around by good choices of remedies. But in challenging cases perseverance is the key. That has to be communicated to the parents so they understand it can take time, sometimes a LONG time. Cases can inch forward or linger for months and then suddenly a right remedy opens up the case. Thanks to the Surrogacy this is possible, but actually it is perseverance that solves it to the end. Through perseverance more and more information comes and makes increasing sense. The chaos slowly becomes less chaotic. The perception of core of the case becomes sharper, making it easier to find the remedy.
Forth, after all the years of treating autism, I realize that most cases need remedies from the early stages of evolution when it comes to the Plant and Animal Kingdoms and from the first three rows of the Periodic Table. Occasionally other remedies will be helpful, like nosodes or imponderables. But this conclusion is based on my experience and finding reliable ways to select the correct remedy, not on theorizing about autism. And this would be my final remark. We need to know why we choose the remedy and do it based on the case, on the specific symptoms present, on the reliable facts from the case, not based on any theory or “one size fits all” approach. I have no doubt that such generalized approaches start with the best of intentions, and there’s at least a grain of truth in them, but treatment must be always tailored to every individual case. We need to apply the same basic principle of individualized homeopathic treatment to the cases of autism like we do in any other disease. We have means to do this, and this should be our goal.
APS: Thank you very much for your time.
Homeopathy has always had its own and sometimes very big successes in treating autism. However, unlike with other conditions, there is very little understanding of ASD and of what it actually is. It undoubtedly comes from the fact that in homeopathy we tend to rely on the information from the mainstream medicine to provide explanations of diseases and unfortunately there is little useful information to be found about autism. According to the mainstream medicine the causes and pathology of autism are still unknown, and there is no official treatment for it. In homeopathy our experience teaches us that autism is treatable, but we still do not really know WHAT we treat when we treat autism. Pierre Fontaine brings some light to this “missing piece of autism” in homeopathy.
What I find very interesting is that Pierre Fontaine’s view of autism is very similar to that of two other professionals I know of in the field of autism treatment, Anat Baniel the developer of the Anat Baniel Method/ Neuromovement), and Lynette Louise, PhD whose expertise is in autism, neurofeedback, and play therapy 6. These three practitioners came to very much the same conclusions as the result of their experience with autism, even though each one is using completely different method and they achieve often remarkable results treating people on the autism spectrum of all ages, including adults. What connects their approaches can be summarized as:
- Autism is a chaos in the mind and body, and also a chaos of the outer world, and so people
with autism employ certain strategies to achieve or increase their feeling of
predictability and safety that will allow them to function in such a chaotic
internal and external environment;
- It is painful condition, physically and/or emotionally, and this pain can prevent from being able to learn, interact with others, and reaching one’s full potential;
- The people on the autism spectrum do realize their impairments and limitations and are always
doing their best to overcome them, even if in the ways that others cannot
- Understanding that every symptom, reaction and behavior has its reason and purpose allows us to
see them as meaningful and can help us to understand people on the autism
spectrum and to improve our relationship and communication with them;
- Observation that there is a special bond between people affected by autism and their
parent/s or other significant person/s in their life, and that this bond is often crucial for recovery;
- Recognizing that every case is different and unique and requires an individualized
- Often it is finding one or more key element/s in the case that can bring a breakthrough in
our understanding of a particular person and speed his/her progress or enable full
- Strong belief that everybody, no matter the severity of the condition and the age, can get
better, learn, improve, overcome their limitations, and eventually possibly
- Aiming for the full recovery and never giving up that it is possible.
But the most important part is that the main ideas about autism that all these three approaches share and build on (points 1-6 in the above summary), have been actually confirmed by people with severe autism who found ways to communicate effectively and be able to share their experiences 7. In homeopathy our goal is to learn directly from those whom we are trying to help. I think it is of the vital importance to listen to people with severe autism who were fortunate to have their voices finally heard either through the Surrogacy Method or in any other way, if we want to give them an equal opportunity to heal.
2. It must be stressed that the current number of 1 in 54 children having autism in the USA
is based on the article published in 2020 but disclosing the results of the
study conducted in year 2016 in 11 States and including only 8-year-old
children (born in 2008), and so now in year 2021 being already 13 years old: https://www.cdc.gov/ncbddd/autism/data.html
As such, this number does not represent the whole
population of American children age 2-18 in 2021, neither shows the prevalence
of autism in all 50 States. Taking into account the rate at which the autism
cases grew in the previous years, the real yet unknown number of children
affected by autism is certainly much higher (see the footnote 3).
3. See the CDC table showing autism statistics in the years 2000-2016 at:
Dawn Prince-Hughes, Songs of the Gorilla Nation: My Journey Through Autism
(2004); Temple Grandin’s online presentations and interviews.
7. Tito Rajarshi, How Can I Speak If My Lips Don’t Move? Inside My Autistic Mind (2011);
Naoki Higashida, The Reason I Jump: The Inner Voice of a Thirteen-Year-Old
Boy with Autism (2007); Elizabeth M. Bonker and Virginia G. Breen, I Am
in Here: The Journey of a Child with Autism Who Cannot Speak but Finds Her
Voice (2011); Ido Kedar, Ido in the Autismland: Climbing Out of Autism’s
Silent Prison (2012); Arthur Fleischmann with Carly Fleischmann, Carly’s
Voice: Breaking Through Autism (2012).
Pierre Fontaine, CCH, RHom, graduated from “The School of Homeopathy”, England in 1994. He specialized in autism from the very first case he saw. Just as he chose Homeopathy because it had total resonance in him, he felt total resonance with autism. He is the Author of “One Heart, One Mind” and is currently writing “The Language of Autism”.
Alicja Pasek-Smith, PhD, CHom, started her career as a Cultural and Social Anthropologist specializing in Native People. Her over a decade experience with autism has been strikingly similar to her fieldwork studying native cultures in the Amazon, as in both situations it requires getting to know people having completely different experience, behaviors and ways of life, without the advantage of sharing the same language that would allow for clear communication and better understanding. She explored several autism teaching and treatment modalities and trained in some of them, including neurofeedback, essential oil therapy, Bach Flower Therapy, and homeopathy. She earned her CHom earlier this year from the Homeopathy School International, Loveland, Colorado. Currently she is taking a leave of absence, hoping to go back to her homeopathic school next year and continue to become a fully certified professional homeopath. She can be reached at email@example.com