A video about functioning labels and why I hate them.
Sorry for not having closed captions. I don’t have the software or the knowhow to do them and I can’t do it manually because my ability to write to dictation is practically zero.
I talk about why functioning labels are offensive to autistic people because they’re labels created by non-autistic people. They’re so ingrained that autitsic people use them too and they end up throwing others like them under the proverbial bus when they say “I’m autistic…but I’m high functioning!” as if they’re ashamed. DON’T BE! Functioning labels create this ridiculous dichotomy in a society that already paints autism as a bad thing. THERE IS NO DICHOTOMY. Everyone who is autistic is autistic and they’re not high or low functioning. They’re not mild or severe. I’m autistic. Anyone who is autistic who is reading this is autistic. Just autistic.
Functioning labels set the stage for how autistic people get treated, and regardless we still get seen as lower or defective. “Broken” but still able to function usefully (high functioning/mild) or “too broken” and not functioning in a useful manner at all (low functioning/severe.) People who get called high functioning or mildly autistic have their issues minimized or invalidated while people who get called low functioning or severely autistic are seen as lesser not-people even by those who say they’re high functioning. I know that’s not the intent of many who say they’re high functioning, but that’s honestly the message being sent when they say that. See what I mean?
It’s only the supports autistic people need that should be measured. High support for people who need help with most everyday things(dressing, showers, eating, etc), medium support for people who only need some help(transportation, prompts for cleaning a house, help with cooking, etc) and low support for people who only need slight help(ie balancing a checkbook or navigating a social environment).
I challenge you to google Amy Sequenzia after watching my video. If you STILL use functioning labels after that, shame on you. Functioning labels are ableist and they need to fall out of use.