Things that need to be left in 2017: Autism edition

Labeling People High Functioning :

It shouldn’t matter what a person’s ability level is. Everyone is worthy of respect and should have the opportunity to reach his potential. Just because someone lower on the spectrum and might have an easier time in a mainstream classroom doesn’t mean that they are more deserving of a proper education.

Well, at least he’s not…

Don’t pretend to compliment my child by insulting other disabled children. I suppose people are trying to find a silver lining to his diagnosis, but it’s really not needed. We love our kid and his autism so we never saw it as a bad thing. Plus it’s bizarre to act as if having a intellectually disabled child is the worst thing in the world. I know a little boy who is sweet, kind, loving, beautiful, talented….and he happens to have Down Syndrome. Anyone would be lucky to have him in their life.

The Assumption They Can’t Talk

Only a small number of people who have ASD are non verbal and a number of those use other ways to communicate like sign language or IPad apps. But even those who don’t could have something to say and are just waiting for someone to find out how .

Dog and Pony Show:

I blame Hollywood for this one because it seems like people with autism are always portrayed as geniuses with weird superpowers. Keep in mind that Rainman was a savant which is extremely rare. There aren’t tons of people on the spectrum counting cards in Vegas. Don’t get me wrong —- the way that they see the world is different and fascinating. However, this becomes a problem if someone expects a freak show and gets upset when they don’t get one.

Neurotypicals Running Autism Charities/Awareness Groups

Groups such as Autism Speaks spend the bulk of their money on salaries, fear mongering awareness campaigns and research on developing “cure”. Only 4% of their budget goes towards family services. The fact that none of their board members are on the spectrum is patronizing as well as baffling. The Autism Self Advocacy Group does a fine job of representing their peers without making autism seem like a curse.

15 comments

  1. Remembering Lives · January 3, 2018

    Don’t get me started on this one. I think we just need to be more open-minded and accepting of people in general. I absolutely agree with you. I realise there is a sprectrum but generally I don’t see autism as a bad thing either. Yes they might need to be taught a few life skills to help them cope in this complicated world(don’t we all?) but why do we tend to assume they need to be fixed.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Remembering Lives · January 3, 2018

    I think we should think a little less about what’s “wrong” with them and look instead at what they are teaching us’

    Liked by 1 person

    • askagimp · January 3, 2018

      Yes ! They don’t lie or play mind games. They aren’t cruel or rude on purpose. We could learn a lot from them. Also, I don’t know a single child that didn’t need someone to teach them social skills.

      Liked by 2 people

  3. Remembering Lives · January 3, 2018

    I have dealt with a fair number of autistic and autistically-traited youngsters both personally and professionally and like you, I love them both for their innocence and their straight-forward nature. Maybe they could teach us a few social skills.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Jules Bradhen · January 4, 2018

    We all have our challenges. With a 15 year old son on the spectrum my biggest struggle is not him but the school and their ‘experts’ who seem to think he can magically transform himself to be like everyone else because his grades are outstanding. Long story there but won’t bore you. All of us are individual and have our challenges. We all need patience at times and respect. Great post thank you

    Liked by 2 people

    • Remembering Lives · January 9, 2018

      Absolutely agree with you everybody faces challenges and sometimes people who deal with challenges early on in life are actually more resilient in the long term.

      Liked by 2 people

  5. ourlittleredhouseblog · January 4, 2018

    I always taught my kids that everyone is unique and if it wasn’t that way the world would be sooooo boring. Everyone has a gift to share with us all. I also hate it when charities take most of the money for their so called charities but leave little for the reason behind their charities. It takes alot to raise a child on the ASD spectrum and there are so many people out there ready to judge and sneer and attack, and that includes other families that have ASD in their families. That to me is so sad, everyone should understand it is a spectrum disorder and no two individuals are alike. again how boring the world would be if everyone were the same. Great post, thanks for sharing.

    Liked by 4 people

    • askagimp · January 4, 2018

      I have never thought of it as a bad thing which confuses most people. N was diagnosed at 4 which is kind of late considering his level. It’s kind of funny now, but when his pediatrician pointed out the “symptoms”, we never thought that it was anything out of the ordinary. We just thought he was a little weird and how could he not be with parents like us? For heavens sake, I was sitting in a glow in the dark wheelchair at the time. 😅 We had him evaluated and he was diagnosed in the very high category (it was before the spectrum was redefined as 1, 2, and 3) Of course, he had to go through testing again through the school system before he went to school. At the meeting, they acted like they were telling us that he had terminal cancer. I’m just blunt enough to ask why they were so worried about it and they said that most parents get mad when they get the results. They lash out and flat refuse services because they don’t want their kids to be labeled “special ed” or “messed up”. That sounds crazy to me. Everyone has to deal with hateful people from time to time no matter what. I would rather have my son be out and proud of who he is rather than force him to fit in and make his autism a dirty little secret. Most of the kids I talk to who hate their ASD usually worry about what everyone else thinks of it rather than the actual symptoms. It just makes me sad.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Jules Bradhen · January 4, 2018

        Took me until my now 15 year old was 13 nearly 14 to get a diagnoses. No one would see it as he was to well behaved, compliant and intelligent. I got told all sorts of platitudes and was talked to like I was supposed to weep and wail and mourn my son. Shocked them a bit when I kept insisting it changed nothing in my eyes L was still L and everything was exactly as it was before. Normal doesn’t exist in our house. Everyone is themselves end of 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      • ourlittleredhouseblog · January 5, 2018

        Oh my gosh that is so true, other kids and even some adults treat people and children different when they know they are on the spectrum. It is so frustrating. There are even charter schools in our state that discriminate and discourage anyone on the spectrum from being in their schools. This is such a touchy subject with me, so I try to stay away from it, this is the most I have ever opened up on this subject and you are right about that look the doctors give when they give any Autism diagnosis, it is like a death sentence. Just means they learn a different way and they are very unique and beautiful.

        Like

  6. Gypsie Dreams · January 4, 2018

    It always amazes me that these negative attitudes still exist, but sadly I know that they do. We are all human beings and we all deserve respect, love and opportunity.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Remembering Lives · January 9, 2018

    Instead of putting all our effort into fixing everybody who doesn’t conform maybe we should be putting more effort into fixing why we should feel they have to.

    Like

  8. quiall · January 15, 2018

    All children have things they need to learn, they also have things they need to teach. We have to be wise enough to hear.

    Liked by 2 people

  9. helenakinc · February 7, 2018

    I like this post quite a bit. Thank you for this. Our oldest grandson is “on the spectrum” and he is so extraordinarily sweet and special, as are all our other grandchildren. When I was caring for him and his little brother while his parents were on a special trip, I had to take him to the doctor. I would have thought most doctors would have some training in handling lots of different kinds of children. But no. The first doctor displayed virtually no understanding or compassion and essentially referred us to the ER (meanwhile lecturing me on what a great responsibility this was…..did I look like I wasn’t responsible?)….rather than treat him. Several hours later and fortunately a compassionate ER doctor who understood what would help him examine our grandson we went home with a cold diagnosis. The ER staff were baffled that the first doc referred us to the ER. Had the first one bothered to let me explain how best to get him to cooperate instead of pretending she was Atilla the Hun, that aggravation would never have happened.

    Liked by 1 person

    • askagimp · February 7, 2018

      It so crazy to me that there are so many people, especially in healthcare, who don’t even try to understand it. Starting with pre k, we explained what autism is and how N reacts in certain situations to his class with very positive results. It’s just plain sad when a group of 5 year old are more educated and have more empathy than adults.

      Liked by 1 person

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