autism connection

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Autism in anyone can mean such difficult and significantly challenging situations and understanding. I’m in awe of everyone who has to deal with Autism and those who try to relate to people with Autism. Much love and peace ⭐️

anonymous asked:

This is kinda a wonky question, but I don't really understand all the controversy about Autism Speaks? Could you help me out if you know? If not that's totally cool thanks for acknowledging me. You're so cool omg

Pfft thank you xD 

Too sum it up quickly here’s a video they made, with the narrator supposedly being autism itself (If you get upset easily don’t watch it (I can’t watch the full thing)

Former Autism Speaks board member Harry Slatkin, whose wife, Laura, continues to serve on the Board of Directors, stated in an interview with Town and Country while still a board member that sometimes he hoped their autistic son David would drown in the backyard pond rather than “suffer like this all his life.” Evidencing a pattern of similarly violent rhetoric, Autism Speaks is also responsible for the 2006 PSA “Autism Every Day“ in which their then Vice President states on camera that she considered putting her autistic daughter in the car and driving off a bridge, and that the only reason she refrained from doing so was because her other, non-autistic daughter would have been waiting for her at home—her autistic daughter was in the room as she made these statements. Furthermore, the producer of this PSA explicitly admitted that the film was intentionally staged to portray negative images of autistic people and their families.

Only four days following the release of “Autism Every Day,” pathologist Karen McCarron smothered her autistic daughter with a garbage bag. McCarron stated that she murdered Katie because her “autism had not been improving,” had thought about killing Katie, that made an earlier brief attempt at suffocation, wanted to cure Katie, thought killing Katie would make her “complete” in heaven, and wanted to live without autism and thus had to kill Katie. Investigators found that McCarron was obsessed with different treatments for Katie. (See People v. FRANK-McCARRON, 934 NE 2d 76 - Ill: Appellate Court, 3rd Dist. 2010.) Though it is not presently possible to draw a direct connection between Autism Speaks’ PSA and Katie’s murder, this crime and dozens like it only underscore how the kind of rhetoric that Autism Speaks favors only serves to recklessly endanger the lives of autistic people.

(source article)

Autism Speaks also publicly supports the Judge Rotenberg Center, a group home for autistic and neurodivergent students that uses “treatments” like food and sleep deprivation and electric shock to try and train the residents into acting neurotypical. The center has changed states three times in an attempt to bypass regulation against abusive treatment, and their practices have resulted in the deaths of more than one student.

(x)

  • Autism Speaks does not have a single autistic member on their board.
  • Autism Speaks only spends 4% of their budget on “family services”.
  • Much of Autism Speaks’ money goes toward research, and much of that research centers on finding a way to eliminate autism, and thus, autistics (which will likely be done through a prenatal test, in the same way that the Down’s Syndrome test is conducted).
  • Autism Speaks produces advertisments, small films, etc. about what a burden autistic people are to society.
  • Autism Speaks was responsible for “Autism Every Day”, which featured a member of their board talking about contemplating murder-suicide of her daughter in front of her daughter. This has now be removed from Autism Speaks’ Youtube channel.
  • Autism Speaks is responsible for the atrocity known as “I am Autism”, a short film produced by the same person who directed the 3rd Harry Potter movie (yes, really) and features an ominous voice saying things like “I am autism…I know where you live…I work faster than pediatric AIDS, cancer, and diabetes combined…I will make sure your marriage fails.”

For further reading, here are a few resources about Autism Speaks:

Here are a few other terrible things that Autism Speaks has done recently.

  • This woman’s job offer was rescinded after she asked Autism Speaks for accommodations in caring for her autistic son.  They refused, and she made necessary accommodations for childcare, but they withdrew her offer anyways.
  • Autism Speaks shared the news of Google removing hate speech regarding autistics from Google’s autofill feature, completely erasing any mention of autistic people’s flashblogs having anything to do with the change.  It was only after a member of the autism community (and not a parent, but an autistic person themselves) spoke with a reporter about the flashblog and a statement was released to the media that Google decided to make this change.
  • Autism Speaks highlighted AAC use, while erasing those those who actually use AAC devices to communicate.  The focus was on the caretakers, not on the autistic people themselves. (The attached link has a link to a rebuttal by a nonspeaking autistic person, Amy Sequenzia).

In short: Its a hate group disguised as a charity and my god I want it to end

Psychopathy vs Sociopathy

A recent post spurred my irritation about sociopaths and psychopaths and the general opinion of them in pop culture.  So, here is a bit of a rant.

Both psychopathy and sociopathy are personality disorders that impact a human being’s behavior.  Often, people confuse sociopathy and psychopathy because of the media’s general depiction of them and pop culture’s inability to properly label either.

Origins

In general, psychopaths are born and sociopaths are raised.  A psychopath tends to result from genetics and is passed down through families.  Sociopaths are the result of their environment, often in the form of abuse or severe pressure while as a child.

If an individual displays troubling behavior from the get go, they’re likely a psychopath.  If they develop that troubling behavior over years, they are likely a sociopath.  This can be hard to know because psychopaths can be the victims of violence and abuse (and since it is genetic, its possible one of their parents is a psychopath as well, increasing the chance for abuse) and psychopaths are extremely adept at hiding their behavior.

Empathy

Empathy is another way to define both these conditions.

Sociopaths can feel empathy but it is highly muted.  I’ve heard it explained to me like people with severe autism, where connections take repeated and constant attempts before success.  I’ve also heard of it explained like a switch, where the sociopath can effectively ‘turn off/on’ their empathy, which given the cause of sociopathy, makes sense.  Since sociopathy is created from pressure, stress and abuse, the sociopath’s empathy is effectively dissociated as a coping mechanism.

Psychopaths, however, do not feel empathy.  Period.  They may be extremely adept at mimicking empathy.  They can understand the process and behavior.  But they don’t feel empathy.  

Connections are made based on the psychopath’s needs.  The psychopath views others as tools; to inflate their ego, as property, as means to an end, as intellectual stimulus.  Psychopaths don’t have friends on an emotional level, but rather those they respect based on other traits, such as their intelligence or skill.

Behavior

Sociopaths tend to be erratic and their behavior is more impulse than direct choice.  Sociopaths may be habitual liars, may have rage issues or may steal with little thought beyond immediate gratification.  While sociopaths can plan, their impulse control tends to be hampered, meaning that their plans tend to fall apart after some time.  This leads to a lot of sociopaths losing their job and, combined with their impulses, leads to them turning to crime or substance abuse.

Psychopaths, in contrast, are not erratic.  They are calculating and meticulous.  Early identification of psychopathy, such as mutilating animals, is not done out of impulse control, but rather the psychopath’s inability to understand the inherent wrongness of their actions.

Psychopaths often hold jobs and their actions, such as lying, stealing or violence, tend to be extremely calculated and are done in a way to provide specific and targeted results for the psychopath.

Pop Culture

So, who is an actual sociopath or psychopath in pop culture?  I’ll give a few examples.

Traditionally, The Joker in comics/DCAU is a psychopath due to his lack of empathy, eye for detail and his use of Harley Quinn.  In modern media, like Suicide Squad and The Dark Knight, Joker is depicted as more of a sociopath, with more erratic behavior.

Lord Voldemort is a psychopath, incapable of feeling love and empathy, who only views those around him as tools or obstacles.

Patrick Bateman from American Psycho is, correctly, identified as a psychopath. 

The Purple Man from Jessica Jones is a sociopath.  It is hinted that he became the way he is after his parents experimented on him.  In addition, his behavior tends to fall closer to the erratic and impulsive side.  While not to be trusted (especially if he was a psychopath) his admission that he has feelings for Jessica would also point to him being a sociopath.

Racter from Shadowrun: Hong Kong is a psychopath.  Right down to his admission that he views the player as a friend, not for any emotional reason, but for academic reasons.

Your comprehensive guide: Why are vaccines and Autism connected? The original "Research"


Your comprehensive guide: Why are vaccines and Autism connected? The original “Research”

Described as “the most damaging medical hoax of the last 100 years”, the 1998 research piece linking vaccines to autism drove vaccination rates in the UK to 79.9%, its lowest since its introduction, and in turn orchestrated widespread epidemics across the globe.

The Fib

In February 1998, Andrew Wakefield planted a seed into the minds of the British public. That seed was the publication of a paper in the medical journal the lancet, claiming a correlation between the MMR (measles, mumps and rubella) vaccine and the development of autism. Before 1998 this claim did not exist and after its complete retraction in 2010, you’d hope it’s gone from our future, too.

Yet we still can’t seem to shake it.

This is emphasised by statements like these, spread by the prominent anti-vaccine campaigner Jenny Mccarthy: ”You ask any mother in the autism community if we’ll take the flu, the measles, over autism any day of the week. I think they need to wake up and stop hurting our kids”.

Keep reading

I know that we really shouldn’t try to focus on autistic people in STEM all the time because it already created a stereotype and it really harms autistic people who want nothing to do with STEM (and it harms intellectually disabled autistic people even more), but. I really can’t help but identify with the “quirky scientist” stereotype.

I always say I want diversity in media representation and I really don’t like those “geniuses with three PhDs” as autistic representation, but I do like autistic characters as “experts”. Not just actual scientists, but people with divergent, unusual intellegence, attention for details, creative problem solving and undying passion for their area of expertise. And that’s why I immediately headcanon characters like the Doctor, Gregory House, Sherlock Holmes, Hermione Granger, Newt Scamander, etc, as autistic. I identify with them.

And in general I just love that autistic people are over-represented in STEM. I love that there were so many autistic kids in Silicon Valley, they almost called it an epidemic, only to find out that it’s because a lot of their parents were undiagnosed autistic. Like there’s a high concentration of autistic people there. I love that many famous scientists from the past are believed to be autistic. I love that a man who was probably autistic literally invented fandom culture in North America. I love that autistic people were historically more welcomed in nerd communities and scientific communities and could find acceptance and friendship there.

And I hope that it’s okay that I fit this stereotype and really want to be a part of this culture. For me it is encouraging. For me it says “it’s okay to be nerdy and geeky and weird, you belong there”. I can look at all these famous scientists who might have been autistic and it motivates me to work more so that one day I can be an autistic scientist too. And even though we shouldn’t perpetuate that stereotype, I think we should keep this history and remember about it and allow autistic people to enjoy it.

Autistic people can be great artists, and great leaders, and great friends, and great parents. They can have intellectual disabilities and be stunning. They can work in a shop or a cafe or a library and be amazing. They can not work at all and be brilliant. They can do whatever they want, even if they won’t find their thing immediately, or struggle at first, or never find their thing and be happy anyway. There is simply no universal life path or career path for autistic people.

But some autistic people are in STEM, some are nerds and geeks, some are descendants of that culture, the “quirky scientist” stereotype. And that’s okay too, cause we are people. And people are allowed to fit stereotypes.

theguardian.com
David Mitchell: what my son's autism has taught me
‘Hurry!’ came the advice following diagnosis. ‘Save your child from autism before it’s too late!’ But how do you save your child from something when you don’t know what that something is?

[image description: a man sitting on some stairs, looking into the distance]

“David Mitchell: what my son’s autism has taught me” or, as I like to call it, “how listening to autistic people helped me understand my autistic son and yet I still somehow came away with the idea that autism parents are the true experts.”

Okay, so, this article…

*sigh*

This article starts off bad.

It starts with the phrase “Mark Haddon’s excellent 2003 novel The Curious Incident Of The Dog In The Night-Time”.

So, yeah…

(It’s not a good book.)

He then goes into the grey area that I find a lot of autism parents (my mother included) struggle with, which is that they understand the problems with functioning labels, but cannot conceive of autism outside of them.

(He has a colour chart, which he initially states as using for individual traits when it comes to his son, but then labels other autistic people as a single colour overall…)

It picks up, though. The author talks about how he and his wife read The Reason I Jump and how it helped them to connect with their son.

So you’d think that this article would wrap up with a conclusion about how listening to autistic people is good, right?

Noooope.

David Mitchell has become Enlightened, you guys.

He went on a three-day weekend to Autism Land and learned their mysteriiiiious ways and now he’s here to relay to you - the allistic audience - the things he learned.

He listened to autistic people, but you should listen to him because He’s The Expert Now.

But, seriously, he has a checklist of things that he thinks will bring about a better future, where he calls for more research (and cites “well-connected American autism parents” as the bastions of autism research… Excuse me while I print out that phrase specifically so that I can literally piss on the idea that A$ ever did anything helpful for autistic people) and then he regurgitates the lessons he took from reading The Reason I Jump.

Instead of, you know, telling people to read work by autistic people and learn these lessons for themselves…

The article ends with a link to the next Naoki Higashida book that David Mitchell has translated, which I guess you could say is him telling you to listen to autistic people?

But here’s the thing:

Why didn’t he say to do that in the article?

I mean, you could imply that you should from the fact that that’s what worked for him, but he certainly never tells you to. He just has a little paragraph about how his translation of The Reason I Jump is the reason why anyone has ever listened to autistic voices, you guys. And then he goes on to regurgitate the lessons he learned, instead of telling you to read those works for yourself.

While citing autism parents as the “frontline activists” when it comes to autism. Not a single mention of the work of autistic people - aside from The Reason I Jump and the related works that he made popular - anywhere.

So why not say it? Why not say, explicitly, to listen to autistic people?

I mean, Mitchell literally stands to profit from people listening to this autistic voice. He’s the English translator for the damn book.

And yet, even when he stands to make money, he cannot step down as the True Expert.

He’s not just the English translator. He’s the autism-to-allism translator. Here so that you don’t have to listen to those pesky autistic people directly.

Even when he literally stands to profit from you doing just that.

Common signs that an autism resource is bad
  • Person-first language (”people with autism”) The autistic community are very vocal about preferring identity-first language (”autistic people”) over person-first language (”people with autism”) so use of person-first language in an autism resource shows a lack of contact with the autistic community/an unwillingness to listen to autistic people.
  • Mentions of a supposed cure for autism. There is no cure for autism and many of the proposed “cures” are both dangerous and abusive. Resources and organisations who try to sell you a cure are either knowingly scamming you or very misinformed about the reality of autism.
  • Advocacy for finding a cure for autism. The majority of the autistic community don’t want a cure for their autism - they want society to change so that autistic people can be accepted, respected and included as they are. Advocacy for finding a cure for autism shows a lack of contact with the autistic community/an unwillingness to listen to autistic people.
  • Functioning labels. Functioning labels (“severe autism” vs “mild autism”/”high-functioning” vs “low-functioning”) are at best useless and at worst harmful and the autistic community doesn’t support the use of them. Use of functioning labels in an autism resources shows a lack of contact with the autistic community and a lacking understanding of autism.
  • Autism Speaks. Autism Speaks is a very harmful organization which isn’t supported by the autistic community. Positive references to Autism Speaks/connections with Autism Speaks shows a lack of contact with the autistic community and an unwillingness to listen to autistic people. 
  • ABA. ABA (”Applied Behavior Analysis”) is an abusive therapy which isn’t supported by the autistic community. Positive references to ABA shows a lack of contact with the autistic community and an unwillingness to listen to autistic people.
  • Claims that vaccines cause autism. Vaccines don’t cause autism, this has been proved over and over by various independent studies. Claims that vaccines cause autism shows a lacking understanding of science/a lack of scientific objectivity. 

anonymous asked:

Hi! I am not autistic, but I have one autistic character that I want to include in a book. I have been reading a lot in this blog and others, and one of my questions is: should I mention she is autistic or let the reader guess? Thanks!

If it’s a book where you can mention that the character is autistic, you should try and do so! Specifically stating that the character is autistic means that we have explicit representation. There is a lot of problems with authors coding their characters as autistic, but then denying that they could be. There’s also ableism within fandoms where unless (and even sometimes if) it is explicitly stated, the character isn’t allowed to be autistic. Also, if it’s a non-stereotypical portrayal of autism and explicitly stated as being autistic, it can challenege people’s views of what autism is and make connections between the character and being autistic. Plus, not stating it will guarantee that most of your readers won’t even realize the character is autistic.

So yes, definitely state it if you can. There are so many reasons to do it!

- Os

Atypical: An Autistic Review (2/8)

Episode 2: This episode made me pause for very long periods of time due to how uncomfortable it made me. Overall, super gross.

As expected, the parents meeting was full of ableist nonsense - constant pity, directed at both children and parents. This meeting had no dads (”this isn’t his “thing” apparently” – what??) and none of the children in question were there. There was no autistic representation at a meeting about autism (honestly, autistic parents are also a thing, even if children are in another space are none of the moms autistic?).

Dad and Sam had a good scene, during which dad was able to calm Sam down and give him dating advice. That said, I’m wondering why Sam’s first instinct is to go to his mom as though his dad was not even there - Is dad distant? Is it just an effect of Sam’s autism (making connections is hard)? Or did something happen between mom and dad that has influenced this?  

The underlying story with the dad and mom continues to bother me. It feels like the message is “Sam being autistic ruined our relationship” - which certainly doesn’t make me feel like a burden to my parents (sarcasm//)

Again, Casey gets irritated with Sam (hitting him in the head) but then tells him to sit with her if he has no one to sit with during lunch. This sends me mixed messages. (In regards to Casey, her apology was exactly how I *want to* apologize to people who don’t deserve an apology)

Again, Sam’s unintentional misogyny goes unaddressed and uncorrected. Instead of addressing it, people make fun of Sam for trying to date - showing both sexism and ableism in under two minutes. Not only that, but later in the episode, it shows Sam crossing a clear boundary (a locked door) - nothing about this is okay. It does get addressed but what the hell??

I can’t tell if Sam had a meltdown or a shutdown, it was labeled as an “incident”, so I can’t say if it was honestly presented. It didn’t feel genuine to me, but I’m just one person.

Sometimes, when Sam takes things too literally I laugh because I’ve said those same things, but it’s always being phrased as though it is a punchline, which makes me feel gross.

Anti-Vaxer: “I would never vaccinate my child against deadly diseases, I mean, what if they got autism??”

Me, an autistic person: 

Originally posted by icicesttouslesjoursmercredi

Abed Nadir is such an important character because he’s an Autistic person being written by an Autistic person who acknowledges the existence of Autism and he’s not some annoying white dude.

anonymous asked:

Hello! Recently I think I had a seizure or panic attack, I'm not sure what it was but something was definitely wrong. *I've already contacted my doctor* and I heard that it's common for autistic people to have seizures and I was wondering if you could please direct me to some resources about this?

I’m not really sure what kind of resources you’re looking for, but here are some resources about the connection between autism and seizures. 

-Sabrina

the-rutile-twins  asked:

Are there people who aren't born with autism? Like I'm not sure how that all works

The simple answer: No. Autism is a pervasive genetic condition that you must be born with.

The full answer: There scores of genes that have been connected to autism, though most of these are not causal. Some of them may be causal, but it has become evident that there are many gene expressions that result in autism.

That is to say, just because you might test positive for one of the “autism genes”, that doesn’t mean I will, even though we have autism.

So how do we know that autism is is genetic? Well, first we know how genetic conditions behave. For example, we know that with Downs Syndrome we see an increase in comorbidities in other genetic conditions. The same is true for things like Marfan’s Syndrome and EDS - both of which also have an increased comorbidity with autism spectrum disorders.

When we see these familiar patterns in complex genetic conditions in autistic patients and pair that with what little we know about the genetics of autism, it becomes clear we are dealing with a genetic disorder.

So what about environmental factors? A few environmental factors have been linked to autism. This is a situation where it is important to understand the difference between causation and correlation. A “link” is a very weak way to say probably a correlation.

Autism is largely environmental in that we as autistics respond differently to the environment than most NT people. This makes it difficult to actually find environmental links as most of these are medical studies not sociological studies. Certainly some account for sociological issues, but not all of them, and it certainly isn’t common in my experience.

Can environmental factors trigger a complex genetic disorder? It’s certainly possible where neurology is concerned, and the science seems to suggest it can happen. It doesn’t mean that environmental factors cause autism though; rather that environmental factors are either triggering expression of those genes, or that they are making expressions that already exist apparent.

What about vaccines? Why, thank you for asking. Autism frequently involves a regression. A child starts to speak and may even reach speaking in full sentences, and then suddenly… Poof. Language goes away, they withdraw into themselves, stop interacting with people, etc. This regression is most often at the age that is considered appropriate for many vaccinations.

Once again you are looking at a correlation. I would wager that a scatter plot of developmental regression in autistics is going to look strikingly similar to a scatter plot of the age children are going to receive vaccinations.

So! To recap!

You are born autistic. It is a complex genetic disorder. Different autistics may have completely different gene expressions to their autism. There may or may not be some environmental triggers that can cause expression of some of those genes in some autistics. Vaccines are not one of the triggers for autism and anyone who says they are can fucking fight me.

Famous Autistic Creators

Ever since autism has become a more or less well-known thing in the public mind, people have been talking about famous people who could have been autistic or are autistic. Quickly it became obvious that the STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) field is full of autistic people, which in combination with ideas and research of Hans Asperger and Leo Kanner lead to the stereotype that autistic talents only reside in the area of science.

It is not completely wrong since some autistic traits are indeed very useful for a scientist. However after several decades of autism awareness there seems to be an unequal shift towards praising autistics in STEM and ignoring the contribution of autistic people in other areas. I want to try and make the public image of autism more diverse. In particular I want to talk about creativity and autism: about writers, poets, artists, musicians, directors and other famous people who are or could have been on the spectrum. I think they too deserve to be recognized and talked about.

This post is separated into two sections: past and present. In the first section I will talk about people who lived before autism was described and who were diagnosed retrospectively by historians and biographers. The second section is devoted to people who have been diagnosed during their lifetimes or have self-diagnosed themselves after researching ASD (which is a valid option). I understand that an autism diagnosis is subjective and it’s impossible to know for sure if someone is autistic, so I’m giving you the reasons for including these people on the list. Whether you believe it or not you can decide for yourself.

Keep reading

anonymous asked:

Hey, is it possible that newt could just have social anxiety instead of autism?

I’m not sure if this is about Credence or Newt but either way, yes. It is entirely possible that they could have social anxiety rather than autism. However, as a person with autism myself, when I was watching these characters, all I could think of was “Me. That’s like me. That’s something I do. I do those things!” Both of my mums agreed with me too, one of them having autism herself and the other working with special needs kids. My older sister, who has three kids and a husband with autism, also saw the connection.

If you’d rather headcanon that Newt or Credence have social anxiety rather than autism, go right ahead! It’s not like there’s official confirmation (unfortunately). My family has a very strong connection to the autistic community and all we could see when we saw these characters, was characters with autism. This is just my take on the characters (and I’ve noticed that other Spectrum people and people related to Spectrum people have agreed with my assessment) and it made me very happy to believe someone like me, like my little sister, like my mum, like my nieces and nephew, like all the kids at my mums scout group, could still be an amazing wizard.

It’s comforting to think that my autism won’t stop be from being magical.

1) Be too mentally ill to cope with full time work

2) Struggle to even get part time work due to social issues connected with autism

3) Feel guilty for being unemployed b/c only 16% of UK autistic adults are in full time work (and probably ableism let’s be honest)

4) Feel like you have to get full time work so you can improve the statistic

5) Cry

2

The past few episodes of the podcast Reply All have covered the criminal trial of an autistic blogger, Paul Modrowski,  who was convicted of murder in 1995. The focus of the episodes have been, by and large, how incredibly thin the case against Modrowski was, and how a conviction was attained in spite of that. The prosecution argued in their closing statements that, ridiculously, the jurors should be able to “see” the evil in Modrowski’s eyes, and several other people present in the courtroom have similarly argued that Modrowski’s guilt was obvious to anyone who was present for the trial and could get a look at the defendant. 

This is nothing new. Disabled and mentally ill people’s symptoms have been taken as signs of “evil” or an utter lack of humanity and remorse for decades. Of course, there is no evidence to back up the idea that we can magically sense someone’s guilt or humanity. In fact, how human and relateable someone seems to be is largely influenced by how similar or dissimilar they are to us. Racism, ableism, and xenophobia can all interact to make us more wary or mistrusting of someone whom we perceive as different or psychologically distant. 

So far, the podcast hasn’t made this explicit. While the hosts have mentioned Modrowski’s autism, they haven’t connected his neurotype back to how he is perceived by others. I hope like hell that they do in the final episode, but I don’t have high hopes that they will.