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  1. #21
    Senior Member Viridian's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Little_Sticks View Post
    What's the view on autism now?

    Last I checked mainstream psychology seemed to agree that it's a disability, something undesirable and horrid, and something that must be cured or done away with in some manner. There seems to be this inherent "expectation" that one "should" be "normal", instead of an appreciation for neuro-diversity.

    The autistic must make accommodations for the neurotypical, but the neurotypical doesn't have to do shit; sounds unhealthy for autistics, adapted or not. An autistic with self-esteem wouldn't want such help, even if they were struggling. I then don't see much good for an autistic getting labeled other than to meet other autistics and find someone to relate to...but there's many places to find such people that don't require a stigmatizing label...
    Oh, but we might need to get used to their stimming! The horror!
    Tentative typing: ISFJ 6w5 or 9w1 (Sp/S[?]).

  2. #22
    Strongly Ambivalent Ivy's Avatar
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    Just for an alternative perspective- my son's diagnosis is what allows people to accept things like his stimming, rather than just finding it annoying. People seem a lot more tolerant of stimmy behaviors if they know why he's doing it. One reason we went ahead with the diagnosis process was that we knew teachers would label him anyway, and this way we could control what label he gets. Being labeled autistic is a far sight better than being labeled a brat or behaviorally disturbed or whatever. And it has allowed them to help his peers adjust to him, as much as he adjusts to them. Every teacher he has ever had since pre-K has spent time helping the rest of the class see the value in his unusual talents and quirks, and respond to things like his lack of awareness of personal space boundaries and tendency to hold one-sided conversations that become more like lectures constructively, rather than ridiculing or excluding him.

  3. #23
    Senior Member Viridian's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ivy View Post
    Just for an alternative perspective- my son's diagnosis is what allows people to accept things like his stimming, rather than just finding it annoying. People seem a lot more tolerant of stimmy behaviors if they know why he's doing it. One reason we went ahead with the diagnosis process was that we knew teachers would label him anyway, and this way we could control what label he gets. Being labeled autistic is a far sight better than being labeled a brat or behaviorally disturbed or whatever. And it has allowed them to help his peers adjust to him, as much as he adjusts to them. Every teacher he has ever had since pre-K has spent time helping the rest of the class see the value in his unusual talents and quirks, and respond to things like his lack of awareness of personal space boundaries and tendency to hold one-sided conversations that become more like lectures constructively, rather than ridiculing or excluding him.
    That's great, Ivy!

    I suppose it's a hard thing for people who are non-neurotypical (as well as for disabled folks) - to ask to be accomodated without being reduced to their differential.
    Tentative typing: ISFJ 6w5 or 9w1 (Sp/S[?]).

  4. #24
    Strongly Ambivalent Ivy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Viridian View Post
    That's great, Ivy!

    I suppose it's a hard thing for people who are non-neurotypical (as well as for disabled folks) - to ask to be accomodated without being reduced to their differential.
    That makes sense. We try not to make a huge deal out of the diagnosis. In fact I talk about it a lot more here than we do IRL these days, now that we've got things rolling. I never want him to feel like autism is anything more than a description of some of the ways he's unique, nothing more. It's not who he is or how we treat him. We focused on it in the beginning to get systems in place and advocate for him in school, but now that we have those in place, we're almost on autopilot until high school when he will change schools. I'm sure things will get tougher then, but we have access to some great alternative charter schools if that happens.

    I know that when I present our experience I'm sort of presenting an idyllic view of how the system responds to people with autism and I feel extremely fortunate that we have this experience. But I do understand it's not available everywhere. Would that it were. We live in an area with a lot of awareness about autism and we've been able to angle into good support systems and a very supportive, small charter school where he will be with basically the same group of kids from K-8. We also have physical access to the services of TEACCH, a well-known and highly-respected research department on the campus of UNC Chapel Hill that IMO is built on respect for the person with autism first and foremost, and giving them the tools to integrate to the degree they want, and giving their schools and loved ones the tools to flex with the person with autism. We're very lucky to be here. In the community of autism service providers in the US, TEACCH and ABA are the two best-known and most widely-used approaches. TEACCH provides an alternative to ABA training which we consider a little bit heavy-handed, though it can work wonders in more severe cases. And most of TEACCH's programs are free or low-cost to residents of NC, although the waitlists are long. Many of the teachers in my son's school have had TEACCH training so they understand him and are very positive in their teaching.

  5. #25
    Senior Member wildcat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ygolo View Post
    http://www.jonathans-stories.com/non...invisible.html
    Jonathan Mitchell is an adult with mild autism. He writes about his experiences above.

    Why is it that we hear so little about autistic adults?

    Is it because they've become indistinguishable from their peers?
    Is it because we've given up on them, and don't believe we can help them further?
    Is it because the adult problems, like lacking physical intimacy, are too uncomfortable to talk about?
    Is it because they've gone from "cute little kids", to "creepy old people"?
    Is it because years of trying to force them to conform have left us frustrated?
    I'm being facetious of course, but I personally identified with his writing, and I wonder if some people don't actually feel this way about adult autistic behavior.
    10 Knight Street, Old Town. An old Jugend building, facing a park.
    A small shop downstairs. I go into the shop and buy pencils. I give the proprietor a note, he gives me small change. I do not put the coins in my pocket.
    When I am back on the street I look around. The street looks deserted. I place the coins on the ground. I wait in the shadows.
    It is not a long wait. Two boys approach. They stop, then they look around. They pick up the coins, and divide them.

    Ten years later. I am eighteen, working in England. I go to a pub in the evening, have a few. Not drunk. When I leave the pub, I have some loose change in my pocket. Cling, cling, money makes the world go round. The street looks deserted. I place the coins I have in my pocket on the ground. Patiently, I wait in the shadows. Two men approach. They stop, then they look around. They pick up the coins, and divide them.

    Do not worry. Someone always lurks in the shadows.

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