The actor shared how he understands that his son needs "extra love, and he gets it" from everyone around.
Brendan Fraser has been recognized with every award this year and he took the occasion to share his learning from his son’s autism diagnosis. "The Whale" star also received recognition for something he feels is equally essential.
Fraser was honored for his work with the NGO Abilis, which provides services and assistance for persons with disabilities, on May 3 at the Greenwich International Film Festival's first GIFF Inspiration Talk & Award Ceremony. He spoke about his 20-year-old son Griffin, who was identified as having autism spectrum disorder (ASD) when he was two, when he accepted the prize, according to Greenwich Times.
In particular, the actor discussed how startling it was to receive a diagnosis at the time and how his kid taught him all he needed to know to take care of him with the help of the community. Later, Fraser said that he considers himself "lucky" to have learned from his son "how to give him everything he needed."
"I'm no expert on the varieties of spectrum disorders. I'm a dad, and that's what I can talk about," Fraser said. "[Griffin] got a diagnosis, and we were thunderstruck, as I imagine many of you in the audience here can comprehend or understand because of the surprise that came with not knowing what to do."
"No matter which medical text or source you consult, it's like trying to get a straight answer out of a leprechaun," he continued. "What that let me know and what let his mom know, too, is that there are so many people who are there to help, and it's up to us, their parents, their families, their loved ones, to just have the courage to ask for it. And we can all do this together. Of all the individuals I've met over the years who have so much more experience in working with families and kids, they all say the same thing," added the proud father.
"We're all learning concurrently at the same time," he shared as he spoke of his personal experience. Previously in an interview with GQ, the actor revealed about his son Griffin who was diagnosed with autism. He said, "He needs extra love in the world, and he gets it. And his brothers, ever since they were small, one was always the spokesperson and the other was the enforcer."
Fraser and his ex-wife Afton Smith, whom he first met in 1993 and wed in 1998, share three sons, Griffin, 20, Holden, 18, and Leland, 16. 2007 saw the couple get a divorce after nine years of marriage.
Speaking further, Fraser said that Griffin is "a curative on everyone who meets him, I noticed. People have some rough edges to them. Or he just makes them, I don't know… put things into sharper relief and maybe find a way to have a little bit more compassion. They don't put themselves first so much around him."