The View From My Brain
Autistics vs. Non-autistics (aka “allistics”)

tmkristen:

I just wanted to say that I’m tired of this constant fighting between autistics and non-autistics. Why can’t we just get along and have respectful discussions from both parties?

Because a lot of people don’t give a shit whether we live or die, much less give us respect and thus many of us don’t feel terribly inclined to respect them in return I’d say is pretty much why.

Besides, the whole “why can’t we all just get along…?” yeah that’s what my boss said to me when a male coworker of mine had just poured his nazist sexist dungheap of an ideology onto me by putting me down because I’m a woman.

Don’t ask the people at the bottom of the heap why we can’t get along. Order the ones on top to get off of us. And then maybe we’ll see how great friends we can find it in our hearts to be to people who’d rather kick us while we’re down. Maybe. Unless we have more fun things to do. Like clean our drain pipes or the cat’s litter box.

I hate it when my fellow autistics discount the feelings and experiences of non-autistic people with autism. Yes, there are some asshole non-autistic people, but telling a non-autistic person that their frustration with their autistic family member/friend is wrong, doesn’t make you any better of a person.

You seem to have misread people’s intentions. They aren’t doing these things to be better people. They’re trying to get it through the non-autistics’ skulls that in order for *them* to be better people they should stop seeing their autistics relatives as burdens, curses, sub-humans, and what-have-you. Just because an allistic person does not ping as an asshole on your radar does not mean someone else cannot correctly have identified them as one. Of course you could also be right about them not being an asshole, but what are *you* losing from someone else being an asshole to someone who isn’t you? Nothing. The thing is, most of us do acknowledge the feelings and experiences of allistics, just not when it comes to actually having autism. And most of us will also be cool with allistics going “Phew, it’s tough to help [autistic relative]” but we will not accept them going “Phew, [autistic relative] is a fucking pain, because they make my life awful.” There’s a difference there and it’s important. Context matters.

You are alienating a person who can, through respectful discussion, become an ally with the autistic community.

That is by no means certain. If that person is a potential ally of the really good kind, they will figure out that one or two autistic people lashing out at them because of horrid experiences is not a reason for them to not support our fight for rights. In fact, if the actions of a few angry people can make an ally stop being an ally - or never become one in the first place, then they’re a pretty worthless and insincere ally anyway.

Autistic people, sadly, don’t get enough respect for our experiences.

Truth! Yes, this!

Most people don’t actually listen to us, but when a non-autistic person joins us and speaks WITH us, our case becomes more valid.

I’m not actually sure how you believe our case becomes more valid through this. More valid in the eyes of the allistics, maybe, but that’s exactly the kind of validation that’s poisonous and counter-productive to actual progress.

The goal is to make allistics realise that our case is valid on its own, whether or not an allistic has OK’ed it. Just like women can have good points without the blessing of a man.

Additionally, don’t confuse an allistic speaking with us with an allistic speaking at us and only pretending to listen. I see a lot of the latter. Much too much, in fact.

Yes. I know it sucks that we can’t instantly get respect for our experiences and that we need non-autistic to validate our experiences, but this is our life. 

It sucks indeed. The thing is. We don’t need allistics to validate our experiences, we need them to accept them. They cannot validate our existences, because we already have value. We exist and experience the world, whether or not allistics want to acknowledge that. This is our life, indeed, and we should not clamour for the validation of allistics, we have value, whether or not they agree with us.

We HAVE to change our tactics of getting respect.

No. Like I said in an earlier post, no one ever got rights by calmly begging for them from people who’d rather ignore us. We have to be loud, we have to be obvious, otherwise we’ll be too easy to ignore.

Attacking a non-autistic person hurts our cause.

Depends on what you mean by attacking and why it is happening. I reserve the right to call a bigot a bigot, and if that’s an attack, then I also reserve the right to attack people for being bigots.

We need to approach people and gently and respectfully explain to them the error of their ways. 

I kinda love the naïve optimism here. But no. I have tried this. Being gentle and respectful only ever made it easier for people to ignore me. It made it easier for them to convince themselves that I was just being silly, and that I could totally just get my act together and not be triggered/over-loaded. After all, I was so composed when talking about my difficulties, surely my difficulties weren’t really difficulties. Oh and my personal favourite as a response to my explanation of my needs: “Well, we’re all a little weird sometimes.” Yeah, except I’m a lot weird all the time, and you people are asking me to stop being weird, which I can’t. It’s not helping.

People seriously do not believe that my disability even exists (despite their multiple complaints about my weirdness) until they’ve stubbornly refused my requests to not be touched (or similar) so many times that it has sent me into a screaming crying meltdown. And these were people with benevolent intentions, I might add.

When agreeing to be gentle and polite when putting knowledge to the allistics I have to also be willing to put my health on the line for as long as they please, until they have seen the very literal damage they can do to me and thus acknowledge it as real. I do not owe anyone gentleness. And I definitely do not owe anyone my health. And these days my health = my future, because without my health I won’t get through my studies and without those and the job they should lead to, I won’t ever be able to take care of myself in any significant way. I do not owe any allistic person, however well-intentioned, my very future.

If you feel you need to approach allistic people in a specific set of ways, that’s great, you do whatever works for you. But don’t do like they do and discount the experiences of other autistics, who have tried this and seen it fail with much greater damage to us than the short, sharp and dismissive method.

You do what works for you (and I’ll repeat that as many times as necessary :-p). Hopefully you’ll run into allistics who are receptive to your method. But don’t presume to know what all of us need to do in order to make things work, because frankly: if you think your method has not been tried ever before, and if you think being nice to people will erase their bigotry, then you’ll find yourself waking up to a harsh reality one of these days.

I once thought like you do. If only I patiently explained everything, then everyone would be cool with it and all would be fine.

I can’t even begin to explain how often that openness and willingness to explain was not just dismissed but outright ridiculed and used as yet another argument why I was just too weird to be human, and too strange to hire. Not to mention used and abused for my helpfulness and willingness to put others before myself.

After so many years of that, I cannot do it anymore. And if you think I need to do it again, then you need to ask yourself whose need this is. Because it sure isn’t mine. I need to never lay myself open before them again, I need to never allow myself to be portrayed as vulnerable because of my oddities ever again, despite the fact that they do make me very vulnerable in certain circumstances. And I don’t need anyone to be nice on my behalf either. What I need is for allistics to stop thinking they are the paragon of the human phenotype.

I also hate this autistic vs. autistic fighting. Everyone’s feelings and experiences with their autism is valid and should be respected. 

This simply confused me… you don’t want us to disagree but you want everybody’s views and opinions to be out there openly how will that work? And why would you want us all to be a monolithic unified force? I thought the whole point of our cause was to make allistics realise that we’re actual persons with individual personalities. Room for individuality means there’ll be fighting over disagreements. Inevitably. Allistics do it all the time, too.

I will admit that sometimes I’m not very civil so I’m at fault too, but I’m trying to work on that.

We all have faults. You don’t owe it to anyone to be a perfect angel. Having emotions is A-OK :-) even if they’re negative. Goodness, gracious! You’re human. Being angry is part of the human range of emotions and you’re allowed to have them and show them and stuff. It’s cool! If people piss you off, you’re under no obligation to hide that fact. Really! Don’t strain yourself towards an impossibly high standard. It’s okay to be angry - I mean, shit, I had to tell my mum that, when my father left her for another woman. She literally thought it wasn’t okay for her to be angry! Like hell! If she felt like being angry as hell, than THAT IS OKAY!!! And it is for you, too :-)

I’m sleep deprived right now so I don’t know how articulate this sounds, but I just had to get this out. 

That’s fair enough.

I’ve given my reasons for disagreeing with you (and there was that point where I was just plain confused). I hope I haven’t been too blunt. If so, I’m sorry. A lot of people (allistics) have given me a lot of grief, as you can see, so I’m simply not as optimistic as you seem to be. And I really do mean that I kind of envy you that optimism :-)

During A Lecture...
My Communications Teacher: You guys don't wake up thinking "How do I communicate?" do you?
Me: *To my mom* I do.
Some advice for allistics dating autistics [bittergrapes: AKA, Cam, I love you…this is beautiful]

thesensualaspie:

These are just a few things I can think of off the top of my head. There will likely be disagreement from other auties/aspies; this comes only from my personal experience as an autistic and I cannot deign to speak for anyone but myself, so apologies in advance if any of this seems inapplicable/incorrect, and be sure to let me know. Anyway, with all that off hand; these are some things for allistic partners to think about in regards to dating an aspie/autie.

Read More

All of the Yes This!

aspiealligator:

[Image description: Background of several pie-style triangles in alternating shades of green with the head of an alligator superimposed over it. Text reads: “TRY TO EXPLAIN SOMETHING TO SOMEONE ELSE. USE AT LEAST 3 EXAMPLES OR ANALOGIES.”]

I am guilty of this. ALL THE TIME! I think I tend to tire people out.

aspiealligator:

[Image description: Background of several pie-style triangles in alternating shades of green with the head of an alligator superimposed over it. Text reads: “TRY TO EXPLAIN SOMETHING TO SOMEONE ELSE. USE AT LEAST 3 EXAMPLES OR ANALOGIES.”]

I am guilty of this. ALL THE TIME! I think I tend to tire people out.

[img: green and greay background with an alligator head in profile. Text says: Info-dump on someone expressing interest in your narrow interest. Get called “holier-than-thou” and told “You’re not as smart as you think”.]
aspiealligator:

GPOY.

Oh gods…. so MUCH GPOY

[img: green and greay background with an alligator head in profile. Text says: Info-dump on someone expressing interest in your narrow interest. Get called “holier-than-thou” and told “You’re not as smart as you think”.]

aspiealligator:

GPOY.

Oh gods…. so MUCH GPOY

allies-person:

wingsunfolding:

Taking things from the top I want to state this first and foremost: having an ASD does not make you the authority on how ASDs work. Making yourself sound like one in the very same post that you decry other auties for doing that (or doing what you perceive to be that) is utterly ridiculous, and you should seriously read through your posts before publishing.

I don’t think I claimed to be an authority on anything. Maybe you should read through my post again. Other auties? I’m not ‘another autie’. I have Asperger’s Syndrome, and while it’s considered as a form of Autism, I’m trying to have enough gumption here to highlight that LFA and AS maybe within the same spectrum, but the effects can be radically different.

Nobody is trying to say that all autistics have exactly the same needs and difficulties.  Obviously, we’re all different.  There are oftentimes huge differences between people with the same diagnostic label.  But this issue is not unique to autism; there are many other disabilities for which there is a wide variety of needs.  You’re free to refer to yourself however you like, but a lot of us dislike the language of hierarchy that is so prominent in the autism world.  And as you probably know, soon all autism diagnoses will be subsumed under a general autism category diagnostically.

Yeah, great for you that you have the economic privilege to live in a place, where you had access to a pro who was able to diagnose you. Great for you also that you live in a place, where pros are informed enough to be willing to diagnose you. Not everyone have that luxury, and putting your professionally diagnosed self’s opinions above those who have no such luxuries is a dick move. Really.

Where’s your point? Yes, of course I’m privileged to have had the access and funding to have a formal diagnoses. While there are probably many people who do have AS who haven’t been diagnosed, it’s perfectly reasonable that a significant number do not have it. Which is, since you’re so concerned with fairness, can be an unfair reflection upon people who do have it.

There probably are some people who’ve self-diagnosed incorrectly…but so what?  Official diagnoses aren’t always correct, either.  I believe, from actually talking to people who are/were self-diagnosed, that the vast majority of them did not come to the decision lightly, but rather identified after a ton of research and self-examination.  There’s no need to be snotty about having an official diagnosis, and it does not necessarily mean that someone with an official diagnosis is more impaired than someone without.  Just means that a confluence of circumstances (year of birth, class, region, other factors) contributed to one person getting, or not getting, a diagnosis.

Again, I see you setting up a hierarchy among autistic people that’s problematic.  There’s no need for it.

Bigotry against autistics is the problem, not people who self-diagnose after a lifetime of experiencing difficulties.

That’s a great strawman you got there. If you’d bothered to educate yourself, you’d have found that most of the people advocating neurodiversity are adamantly rejecting the functioning labels.

What a great idea. Yes, scrap the labels which serve as a useful way to discern the abilities of one person from the other for practical purposes. That’s a really diverse concept.

How on earth are functioning labels the only way to discern the differences of abilities between people?  That’s absurd.  We seem to manage to do it okay for non-disabled people without “functioning” labels!

Hopefully, eliminating functioning labels will allow us to look at people as individuals.  Saying that someone is “high” or “low” functioning doesn’t really tell us much about a person. Saying that they’re good at x, y, and z, but need extra help with a, b, and c is a much more accurate, and less dehumanizing, way of describing a person.

You’d also have found that most neurodiversity people want the same rights to be themselves as neurotypical people have. You seem to equate “having the same rights” with “getting the exact same things”.

Nobody had the right to be themselves. Everyone makes compromises on how they conduct themselves depending on the situation. For example, most people do not present themselves in the same way and they would at work and they would at a music concert. You seem to think that non-Autistic people have divine right to do whatever they want to do.

I’m really not sure where you’re getting this from Jem’s post. 

We don’t argue for a separate set of rights, we argue for the right to be odd and to not be forced into a performance of normalcy that is more damaging than anything else. A disctinction you seem to have a conspicuous amount of trouble making, considering you’re placing yourself as judge over these activists you so seem to despise.

Normal is just another way to describe the average, abnormal to describe something that deviates for the average. But you social justice types, paranoid as ever, seem to have this idea that when others describe something is abnormal, they’re implying that it’s less worthy or inferior.

Because many of us have had experiences in which we have been described as “abnormal” in which it’s clearly been negative and insulting.  We’re not just making this up.  There is a long history of people who are labeled as “abnormal” receiving subpar treatment, and there is a lot of that going on today.  Abnormality is more than a statistical concept.  It is a social category that oftentimes brings stigma and dehumanization.

If anyone comes close to arguing that we’re equally abled, it’s far more likely that it was an argument about how society has prioritized and prized neurotypical abilities to a point where people with differing abilities cannot be equal.

Maybe because the the majority don’t have ASDs. Catering to the majority is only common sense, so a privileged social position is only a natural outcome. Add to that the fact that society’s understanding of Autism is in it’s infancy, and it should be pretty obvious why we’ve yet to perfect a system of inclusion based on differing abilities or mindsets.

Maybe we haven’t yet perfected the system of inclusion, but I see no reason not to try to make strides.  “Catering to the majority” is not the way to build a more inclusive and just society, however.  “Catering to the majority” in the way you’re using the term sounds suspiciously like upholding the status quo without question.

The point is to get acknowledgement that the hierarchy of ability is arbitrary, and that different abilities does not mean that these different abilities are inherently worth less than the normative abilities - even if they’re not the same. The point wich you seem to have missed grandly.

I don’t think I missed the point there. I never once said that different abilities are any less worthy that average abilities. To the contrary, it’s a good situation to have one party balance out the others deficits. The problem here is that Neurodiversity activists are to busy bashing on NTs, demonizing them, and downplaying or mocking their differing abilities or mindsets to see them as valuable collaborators. Hierarchy is also part of the natural order. Some people are above others in some ways, the same person below is above the other another area.

Okay.  Differences in ability are part of the natural order.  Hierarchies based on differences in ability, and assumptions that someone is worth more or less due to ability/disability, are noxious and need to be vigorously challenged.

I don’t know which “Neurodiversity activists” you are referring to, but it’s not the ones I see here on Tumblr, or at the real-life neurodiversity and self-advocate events that I attend.  I don’t see NTs being demonized, though I do see their privilege being identified, and their bigotry being pointed out when it is evident.  Not the same thing at all.

You, dear one, is a massive dick for saying this. It is no way proven that autistic people have no empathy. In fact, I tend to see more empathy from autistic people, then from neurotypical people.

You maybe see empathy from Autistic people, but just because you see it doesn’t make it so. Empathy is the ability to relate to another person’s feelings what seems to be an intuitive level. Really, this is not so much intuition but the ability to read body language, communicate effectively and have the social imagination to put oneself in their position. We can be sympathetic, certainly. But our ability to empathize seems to be more reliant of having first hand knowledge of having a similar experience ourselves.

And I think this definition of empathy is bunk that was gerry-mandered by Simon Baron-Cohen for the purpose of excluding autistic people from it.  Elsewhere in language, and even in psychological research, this is not the definition of empathy which is used.  I am referring specifically to the part about reading body language and communicating “effectively,” whatever that means, it is.

This is really far too big a subject to effectively cover in a paragraph or two, but I highly recommend reading what autistic people and allies have said on this issue.  Rachel at the Journeys with Autism blog recently wrote a multi-part series critiquing Baron-Cohen’s “empathy quotient” test; the first part of that is here.  There is also a new website about autism and empathy that has a lot of good stuff.

Moreover, many autistic people can read each other’s body language, or the body language of other neuro-atypical people.  Which strongly suggests that many of our social problems come from interacting with people with divergent neurologies, not some inherent lack on our part.

The lack of empathy is a myth propagated by charlatans like Simon Baron-Cohen, who never actually bother to talk to autistic people, and by people who want to shut us up, because they can’t be bothered to listen to us and accept that we often (but not always) communicate in non-standard ways. For you, a fellow autistic person, to throw this at the rest of is shows exactly how little you know about this.

I’m not going to show favoritism with others with ASDs just because they have ASDs. Especially not when I disagree with them. Baron Cohen presents his theories and findings very well in my opinion, and I’m inclined to believe they hold a lot of weight. I’m lost as to how you think he and others are conspiring against anyone or feel offended by his work.

I don’t think Baron-Cohen is “conspiring against us” (and I don’t think Jem thinks this, either).  I do, however, think that his ideas about autism are wrong, and that if he bothered to actually listen to autistic people rather than impose his beloved theories on everything we do, he would know that.  I strongly disagree that his ideas are well-presented.  I actually think they’re nonsense, and I have neuropsychologist friends and acquaintances who agree with me.  Baron-Cohen is not the end-all-be-all of autism explanations.  Far from it.

Which essentially mean, if you can argue that a person has no empathy, it’s okay to disregard their wishes and you won’t have to treat them as humans. You are, by perpetuating this argument a danger to every one of us. I give you no thanks for this.

Again. The mind boggles. You fail to look outside your own head. Congrats on perpetuating a stereotype that you probably have problems with.

Jem is not “failing to look outside [her] own head,” but rather is working with the knowledge that autistic people’s voices are often silenced—especially on autism discourse, oddly enough—and our supposed lack of empathy is often used as a justification.  It’s not perpetuating a stereotype to acknowledge that a stereotype exists and has pernicious effects.

Additionally you fall into the same trap with functioning labels. Asperger’s Syndrome does not mean high-functioning. Autism comes with possibly differences and disabilities in so many aspects that someone with overall high-functoning autism can very well be lower-functioning in one particular aspect than someone else who has overall low-functioning autism, which essentially makes those labels useless.

Once more, you’ve failed to tell me anything I don’t already know. This doesn’t take away from the fact that labels are a useful thing. Maybe they need tweeked, but LFA, HFA and AS are good enough to cover the basics of one persons abilities in comparison to anothers.

“LFA” and “HFA” aren’t actually even diagnoses and never have been.  But if you think these terms are adequate to describe a huge range of human beings, you are vastly oversimplifying the complexities of many people’s lives and abilities.  Autism affects MANY different areas of ability, and LFA/HFA/AS and associated stereotypes doesn’t even come close to describing that.

You suggesting that nothing we ever find to work for one person can ever be used with any luck for another person. In fact, this way of thinking would utterly ruin every branch of science in the world. It is only when it cames to autistics offering potentially useful input on our own situations and diagnoses that the rest of the world forgets how science and cross-referencing works. The reason for this? Te rest of the world would prefer to remain the authority on us rather than acknowledge that perhaps we know anything at all about ourselves.

You’re hopeless. I don’t know what you read that made you waste your time typing that out, as if I gave you grounds to believe that I disagreed. My point was that you enjoy overestimating, with great arrogance, your ability to get into the heads to extremely low functioning individuals.

And yet non-autistic researchers and parents are somehow entirely capable of getting into the heads of autistic people.

Awww, the poor parens who deal with their son’s distress… how about the poor kid who deals with HIS BEING DISTRESSED.

Yes. Poor them. They probably have empathy, and suffer due to his suffering. This is just an example of your inability to spot the difference between empathy and sympathy, the former being something most of us are lacking in. I didn’t take away from the fact that he’s the one in most distress. I did say ‘his distress’ first and foremost. The parents are secondary, but that doesn’t take away from their difficulties.

And yet, your original post focused entirely on the parents’ suffering—a very common trope in autism.  That is what Jem was referring to.

Maybe if some effort was actually put into figuring out what’s triggering the kid to need to such intense stimming and self-injurious behaviour, maybe it’d help. But people so seldom look beyond “we need him to stop”, when in fact they should be looking at “what does he need that would make him no longer need these behaviours as stress relief?”

Yeah, because parents and professionals don’t want to help these kids. They never look at the sources. Ever. Give me a break.

Not what was being said, though obviously none of us can speak for all parents and professionals.  Yes, there are many who are doing things right, but there are also those who just see “ELIMINATE BAD BEHAVIOR” (even when the “bad behavior” isn’t actually harmful) and don’t look for underlying causes.

People insist that if we can read an write and talk, we must be okay, and they completely ignore the fact that Aspies and auties who can read and write and talk are continuously abused and belittled and patronised for not being able to do millions of other things.

Is your unrelated rant over yet?

It’s not unrelated, as your original post wrote off people with AS diagnoses as not disabled enough for our opinions to count.

They insist that we’re smart and can do loads of things (which is sometimes true), but when we can’t do the things THEY want us to do, we’re human failures and faulty and shouldn’t have the right to exist.

Everyone is given expectations. Everyone is pressured to use their abilities according to how others see them. You’re not special. Everyone is faulty. You’re not special.

And that’s wrong, especially because many people with invisible/less-visible disabilities can’t do the things that we’re expected to do based on superficial appearances.  A person with a heart condition may look like they can run a mile, but that isn’t necessarily so.

That is why disability rights are needed.

Yeah, that’s what the neurotypicals are doing. You know what they’re NOT doing? Listening to us. Listening to what we say we need and insisting they know what we need better than we do ourselves. They are actively looking for ways to make sure that no more people like us are born - that doesn’t exactly make us feel welcome. They’re working on ‘therapies’ to ‘help’ us appear more neurotypical, so the other neurotypicals aren’t bothered by our visible differences.

No, they’re working on ways so you can better integrate yourself into mainstream society. That’s considerably more practical than attempting to enforce tolerance upon others when your difficulties impact not just upon you, but everyone else. Whether you like it or not, you can’t educate everyone about Autism. You can’t force people who are incapable to tolerance to be tolerant. This was my point about some people being dicks. Some people won’t be changed. Thankfully, most people are open to the suggestion, but they don’t enjoy having it shoved down their throats.

So it’s not important for people to actually listen to us in “helping” us?  Wow.

Being “better integrated into society” requires some give on society’s part, too, you know.  And anyway currently it is not possible to turn an autistic person into a non-autistic person.  We’re here, and we’re not going anywhere anytime soon.  To me, it is obviously better for everyone if society became more accepting of neuro-atypicalities (not limited to autism).

I have received multiple offers of help for getting rid of my visible stims. Have I received offers of help to relieve the stress from sensory stimuli that causes my need to stim?

Maybe you need to start standing on your own two feet and establishing your own coping mechanisms instead of shifting the responsibility. After-all, I thought you knew yourself more than anyone ?You’ve been offered suggestions to lessen your stiming since it’s deemed socially unacceptable, and that sure does suck. But meanwhile, why should anyone offer you advice when you’re so hostile to the idea compromise?

I think you missed Jem’s point.  She was saying that in her experiences, people are more concerned with making her appear normal than in helping to alleviate her discomfort.  Which is unfortunately all too typical of how people try to “help” autistic people.

And it’s a bit rich of you to start lecturing her about the need to take responsibility for herself, etc., when you don’t know much about her and are making all sorts of assumptions left and right.

No. Have I received tools and items to make my daily life easier thus relieving my need to stim? No. Have I in any way been offered a life in a world that will accept that I cannot do everything everyone else can? No. I have been offered a person to help me navigate a world that essentially doesn’t want me. I have been offered advice on how I must absolutely tolerate the office clerk next to my desk listening to very audible (albeit not loud) music while working, whereas I must lessen my own much softer and less audible noises so she isn’t disturbed in her work. THAT is not helping us.

You’re under the impression that people owe you something. They do not. You only deserve as much as you can establish for yourself. That goes for everyone.

That’s a very nice John Birch club ideology, but a lot of us don’t agree, and anyway, it’s not that simple a lot of the time.

That is a unch of neurotypicals trying to help themselves so they don’t have to be faced with and unsettled by too much oddness in one go.

Again, why the hell should they? Especially not when they’re in the majority. Why disturb ten people for the sake of a single persons productivity? I’m unsettled by things too - like parties - so I don’t go to parties. I work this out for myself. Tolerance works both ways.

Okay, choosing not to go to parties on one’s own is completely different from neurotypical people refusing to accept the presence of an autistic person because said person is weird. 

And what need do I have for a feelgood book written by a neurotypical person about life and autism, when they usually know jack shit about what it’s actually like being autistic. What need do I have for that?

You don’t, but surely it’s much better than having them write books about it being something that needs to be eradicated. The point here is that you lot are never happy. You’re either going to outraged or offended either way. NTs do something - Neurodiversity is unhappy. NTs do something completely different - Neurodiversity is still unhappy.

Neurodiversity isn’t a monolith, and that’s not true in any case.  I’m pretty sure “Neurodiversity” (meaning most people who believe in neurodiversity) was pretty happy, for instance, when Congress passed legislation against restraint and seclusion in schools, or approved the nomination of an autistic person to the National Council on Disability.  Yes, we still have some issues.  Why the hell wouldn’t we?  There are serious problems with how society treats disabled people in general and autistic people in particular.  Should we just be happy and completely satisfied with whatever attention we’re given?  That’s just so odd to me.

Whichever it is, your words are the kind that harm the rest of us. But I suppose that won’t mean anything to you, since you’ll probably claim to have no empathy and therefore no ability to have a guilty conscience. Of course, that’ll be bullshit, and you’ll still not need an excuse to be a dick - to reference your own words.

I disagree with you on many aspects of this, but it’s not to cause anyone harm. It’s more because I think you’re kind causes quite an amount of harm. The difference between my mode of thinking is that your kind takes an extremely naive and rose-tinted humanistic approach, where as I’m inclinded to try to veiw it more practically. But after-all, social naivety is something common in many people with ASDs.

Wow, way to attribute everything to someone’s neurotype.  Good job!

Anyway, I still have yet to see concrete evidence that neurodiversity “harms” people.  I’ll be waiting on that.

*claps*

Thank you. I suck at finding and linking the relevant ressources, so thanks for supplying that as well as your well-argued points.

symphonyofghosts:

jemimaaslana:

allies-person:

wingsunfolding:

The next time I read anyone saying that “Autism is not a disorder but simply a different way of being”, I’ll scream (inside).

Different

adjective
• 1 not the same as another or each other; unlike in nature, form , or quality:you can play this game in different waysthe car’s different from…

Sigh.  Anyone want to take a gander at this?

Done and posted below. It got ranty - be warned.

Because getting ranty and personal is a great way to present an argument. Concluded above.

Was that sarcasm or did you mean it?

allies-person:

wingsunfolding:

The next time I read anyone saying that “Autism is not a disorder but simply a different way of being”, I’ll scream (inside).

Different

adjective
• 1 not the same as another or each other; unlike in nature, form , or quality:you can play this game in different waysthe car’s different from…

Sigh.  Anyone want to take a gander at this?

Done and posted below. It got ranty - be warned.

'Neurodiversity' and my problem with it

wingsunfolding:

The next time I read anyone saying that “Autism is not a disorder but simply a different way of being”, I’ll scream (inside).

Different

adjective
    •    1 not the same as another or each other; unlike in nature, form , or quality:you can play this game in different waysthe car’s different from anything else on the market
    •    informal novel and unusual:try something deliciously different
    •    2 distinct; separate:on two different occasions

Adam - http://www.youtube.com/embed/lKGzxBNmMMI


Disordered

verb
[with object] (usually as adjective disordered)
    •    disrupt the systematic functioning or neat arrangement of:she went to comb her disordered hairhis sleep is disordered
    •    Medicinedisrupt the normal functioning of:a patient who is mentally disordered

Alex - http://vimeo.com/11757425


For the record, I have Asperger’s Syndrome. Not e-Asperger’s. Diagnosed Asperger’s.

Obviously, ‘we’ should be treating people on the autistic spectrum like human beings. I think if you ask most people who have any awareness of it, they think that it goes without saying. Same goes for the idea that people should be supported in a manner that best supports their mindset. So, I’m not sure about that being such a revolutionary idea these days.

But here is the kicker… The ‘Neurodiverse’ people (those high functioning people, funny enough} want to be treated the same as everyone else, but yet they believe that they deserve also deserve special treatment, special rights, special status and a more sensitive and tolerant approach to everyone else. I’m sorry, but equality goes both ways. This is ridiculous. You can’t demand to be equally able and differently able at the same time. You cannot have it all.

Secondly, people with Asperger’s Syndrome or high functioning Autism can not in all seriousness claim to be able to know what life is like for individuals with low functioning Autism. Sure, you may have insight, but you sure as hell can’t claim to have some profound understanding of it. Add to this the fact that you lack empathy and the notion becomes all the more ridiculous.

Thirdly, this bashing of parents in obscene. Yes, we know that the vaccine theory has no ground, but most medical specialists know this and refute it. That is enough for me. These parents on the other hand are grasping at straws because, like the parents of the boy in the second video, they deal with their sons distress and self-injurous behavior everyday, 24/7. There is very little that they can do for him. This child is not in the position to be described as ‘different’ like Adam with Asperger’s. To use such a term only serves to belittle the severity of his situation along with as that of his parents. And to be quite honest, I find any such implication as disgusting as it is absurd.

While the idea of selective abortion being made a possibility through pre-natal detection, something which understandably raises some peoples concerns over ethics, ‘Neurotypicals’ are not out for your blood. They are not building death camps for the disabled, disordered or different. Far from it, many seem to be working towards therapies to elevate the negative aspects of ASDs, writing feelgood books and generally trying to be helpful.


They’re not orchestrating a round hole of a society, so that you, the square peg, finds it difficult to fit yourself into it. Oh, and indeed, I know some individuals can be massive dicks. Though the people who do/have actually tried to make your life more difficult aren’t going about it because you’re a special snowflake with an ASD. It’s because they’re dicks. The point there is dicks don’t need any particular excuse to behave like dicks, they just do it.

Let’s start with the end of this: Yes, some individuals can be massive dicks. You’re demonstrating quite well here.

Taking things from the top I want to state this first and foremost: having an ASD does not make you the authority on how ASDs work. Making yourself sound like one in the very same post that you decry other auties for doing that (or doing what you perceive to be that) is utterly ridiculous, and you should seriously read through your posts before publishing.

Anyway starting off.

For the record, I have Asperger’s Syndrome. Not e-Asperger’s. Diagnosed Asperger’s.

Yeah, great for you that you have the economic privilege to live in a place, where you had access to a pro who was able to diagnose you. Great for you also that you live in a place, where pros are informed enough to be willing to diagnose you. Not everyone have that luxury, and putting your professionally diagnosed self’s opinions above those who have no such luxuries is a dick move. Really.

But here is the kicker… The ‘Neurodiverse’ people (those high functioning people, funny enough} want to be treated the same as everyone else

That’s a great strawman you got there. If you’d bothered to educate yourself, you’d have found that most of the people advocating neurodiversity are adamantly rejecting the functioning labels. You’d also have found that most neurodiversity people want the same rights to be themselves as neurotypical people have. You seem to equate “having the same rights” with “getting the exact same things”.

but yet they believe that they deserve also deserve special treatment, special rights, special status and a more sensitive and tolerant approach to everyone else.

We don’t argue for a separate set of rights, we argue for the right to be odd and to not be forced into a performance of normalcy that is more damaging than anything else. A disctinction you seem to have a conspicuous amount of trouble making, considering you’re placing yourself as judge over these activists you so seem to despise.

You can’t demand to be equally able and differently able at the same time

Strawman again. Who amongst the neurodiversity activists is saying this? I have never seen anyone say both that we’re equally abled and also differently abled. The whole point of being a neurodiversity activist is to fight for people’s right to have their different abilities acknowledged equally.

If anyone comes close to arguing that we’re equally abled, it’s far more likely that it was an argument about how society has prioritized and prized neurotypical abilities to a point where people with differing abilities cannot be equal. The point is to get acknowledgement that the hierarchy of ability is arbitrary, and that different abilities does not mean that these different abilities are inherently worth less than the normative abilities - even if they’re not the same. The point wich you seem to have missed grandly.

Secondly, people with Asperger’s Syndrome or high functioning Autism can not in all seriousness claim to be able to know what life is like for individuals with low functioning Autism. Sure, you may have insight, but you sure as hell can’t claim to have some profound understanding of it. Add to this the fact that you lack empathy and the notion becomes all the more ridiculous.

You, dear one, is a massive dick for saying this. It is no way proven that autistic people have no empathy. In fact, I tend to see more empathy from autistic people, then from neurotypical people. The lack of empathy is a myth propagated by charlatans like Simon Baron-Cohen, who never actually bother to talk to autistic people, and by people who want to shut us up, because they can’t be bothered to listen to us and accept that we often (but not always) communicate in non-standard ways. For you, a fellow autistic person, to throw this at the rest of is shows exactly how little you know about this.

You may not have any empathy of your own. That’s not for me to say, but for to unquestioningly throw this out there, without having educated yourself on how much contention has been raised about this exact aspect of autism is incredibly telling of your own ignorance and how little weight your argument actually holds.

You’re also saying that if a person has no empathy it’s okay to not listen to them. Which essentially mean, if you can argue that a person has no empathy, it’s okay to disregard their wishes and you won’t have to treat them as humans. You are, by perpetuating this argument a danger to every one of us. I give you no thanks for this.

Additionally you fall into the same trap with functioning labels. Asperger’s Syndrome does not mean high-functioning. Autism comes with possibly differences and disabilities in so many aspects that someone with overall high-functoning autism can very well be lower-functioning in one particular aspect than someone else who has overall low-functioning autism, which essentially makes those labels useless.

Besides: say you figured out the solution to a maths problem. Would you need empathy and insight into the entirety of another person’s life and personality in order to help them solve that same maths problem? Of course not. The notion is ridiculous.

So if I have figured out a means of lessening sensory overload from tactile stimuli, do I need to know the entire personal and medical history of another person to suggest they try the same if their particular problem is the same? Of course not. Empathy is not needed for that.

Empathy is needed for having the motivation to even want to help. The fact that so many autistics want to help each other very much disprove this lack of empathy.

You suggesting that nothing we ever find to work for one person can ever be used with any luck for another person. In fact, this way of thinking would utterly ruin every branch of science in the world. It is only when it cames to autistics offering potentially useful input on our own situations and diagnoses that the rest of the world forgets how science and cross-referencing works. The reason for this? Te rest of the world would prefer to remain the authority on us rather than acknowledge that perhaps we know anything at all about ourselves.

like the parents of the boy in the second video, they deal with their sons distress and self-injurous behavior everyday, 24/7.

Awww, the poor parens who deal with their son’s distress… how about the poor kid who deals with HIS BEING DISTRESSED. Maybe if some effort was actually put into figuring out what’s triggering the kid to need to such intense stimming and self-injurious behaviour, maybe it’d help. But people so seldom look beyond “we need him to stop”, when in fact they should be looking at “what does he need that would make him no longer need these behaviours as stress relief?”

Also, to claim that Aspies never engage in self-injurious behaviour is to deny that people like me and many others even exist. You are effectively denying any overlap at all, claiming that all Aspies are merely a little weird but otherwise perfectly well-functioning people, when the truth is that many, many Aspies end up hospitalised with self-injurious behaviour, heavy depressions, drug addictions, eating disorders etc. etc. and we are dying from these things, because people (parents and medical pros) refuse to acknowledge that a normative intellectual functionality is not the same as normative sensory functionality and so on.

People insist that if we can read an write and talk, we must be okay, and they completely ignore the fact that Aspies and auties who can read and write and talk are continuously abused and belittled and patronised for not being able to do millions of other things.

It is not we who can’t make up our minds. It’s the rest of the world. They insist that as long as we can read, write and talk then everything will be fine and we’ll do alright, but they turn right around and berate us when it turns out that read, write and talk is sometimes all we can do. They insist that we’re smart and can do loads of things (which is sometimes true), but when we can’t do the things THEY want us to do, we’re human failures and faulty and shouldn’t have the right to exist.

But there you are, as an Aspie yourself not having had these experiences(? - at least it doesn’t sound like it) telling the rest of us that our lived experiences aren’t real. Aren’t true. And we’re wrong and you’re right, ‘cause we have no empathy.

‘Neurotypicals’ are not out for your blood. They are not building death camps for the disabled, disordered or different. Far from it, many seem to be working towards therapies to elevate the negative aspects of ASDs, writing feelgood books and generally trying to be helpful.

Yeah, that’s what the neurotypicals are doing. You know what they’re NOT doing? Listening to us. Listening to what we say we need and insisting they know what we need better than we do ourselves. They are actively looking for ways to make sure that no more people like us are born - that doesn’t exactly make us feel welcome. They’re working on ‘therapies’ to ‘help’ us appear more neurotypical, so the other neurotypicals aren’t bothered by our visible differences.

I have received multiple offers of help for getting rid of my visible stims. Have I received offers of help to relieve the stress from sensory stimuli that causes my need to stim? No. Have I received tools and items to make my daily life easier thus relieving my need to stim? No. Have I in any way been offered a life in a world that will accept that I cannot do everything everyone else can? No. I have been offered a person to help me navigate a world that essentially doesn’t want me. I have been offered advice on how I must absolutely tolerate the office clerk next to my desk listening to very audible (albeit not loud) music while working, whereas I must lessen my own much softer and less audible noises so she isn’t disturbed in her work. THAT is not helping us. That is a unch of neurotypicals trying to help themselves so they don’t have to be faced with and unsettled by too much oddness in one go.

And what need do I have for a feelgood book written by a neurotypical person about life and autism, when they usually know jack shit about what it’s actually like being autistic. What need do I have for that? I know much more about being autistic than any neurotypical person ever could, because I experience it. So do you. That’s not to say that either of us know what it’s like for everyone else who has autism, but being autistic we have a far better chance at guessing than any neurotypical person will ever have. And that is why our input should not be marginalised like it so often happens.

Though the people who do/have actually tried to make your life more difficult aren’t going about it because you’re a special snowflake with an ASD. It’s because they’re dicks. The point there is dicks don’t need any particular excuse to behave like dicks, they just do it.

No, they’re usually going about it, because they think being neurotypical is the best thing ever and therefore it must also be the best thing for an autistic person to become more neurotypical. They don’t do it because they’re dicks. They do it because they’re ignorant and arrogant. They are seldom malicious, they are the “mother knows best” type, and they are devastating. For you to excuse it with “dicks are just dicks” is to simplify the problem and to erase the damage being done to real live people. That btw, makes you a bit of a dick.

And your jab at people with ASDs being special snowflakes? Yeah, that was a dick move.

You know, with that attitude to people with autism I see three possible and mutually exclusive conclusions about you hovering before my eyes: 1) you have so much internalized hatred of your diagnosis and subsequently of yourself that you are actively working against everything to do with a positive attitude to the diagnosis, 2) you don’t actually have the diagnosis, but is using it as leverage to legitimize your hatred and vitriol against autistic people, 3) you do have the diagnosis, and you’re just being a dick.

Whichever it is, your words are the kind that harm the rest of us. But I suppose that won’t mean anything to you, since you’ll probably claim to have no empathy and therefore no ability to have a guilty conscience. Of course, that’ll be bullshit, and you’ll still not need an excuse to be a dick - to reference your own words.

/this has been a rant

I think someone should do a privilege page for neurotypicals (or non-autistics, whatever terminology you prefer).