~Rumi

All day I think about it, then at night I say it. Where did I come from, and what am I supposed to be doing? I have no idea. My soul is from elsewhere, I'm sure of that. And I intend to end up there...Who looks out with my eyes? What is the soul? I cannot stop asking. If I could taste one sip of an answer, I could break out of this prison...I didn't come here of my own accord, and I can't leave that way. Whoever brought me here will have to take me home.

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04 May 2009

Adversity


My BADD post didn't go over so well with Foresam, author of the blog site Hating Autism.

Take a look at Foresam's response to my BADD post:

Ari Ne'eman is not autistic. He has Asperger's. You have no clue what low functioning autism is all about. Ne'eman is intentionally confusing the issue, as are you.

Well, at least Foresam was direct and to the point. On the other hand, I thought my post was strong enough to at least influence a few opposers or to at least incite positive change. 

Alright Foresam, I've been tossing around your commentary and here's my response:

Yes, you are right, Ari Ne'eman is Asperger's autistic. And, as you know, Asperger's is a form of autism belonging to the Autism Spectrum Disorder family within the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders.

Several Autistic community members refuse to distinguish themselves by type of autism, as it may lead to classism both inside and outside of the community. Please note that the Autistic community is working to secure improvement of life for all autistic people. Categorizing autistic people hurts the community. It is also subjective, as autistic people often have uneven skills. For example, an autistic person may be a whiz at computers, or at solving advanced math calculations, yet be completely unable to attend to self-care needs. Also important is that many people on the spectrum--despite the label they may have been given--require services and support in order to reach goals and to level the playing field.

It is untrue to assume that the Autistic community includes only those who fall under the label of Asperger's or "High-Functioning Autism." There is a great number of autistics who face extreme challenges, and who deal with co-morbid conditions, who are just as much a part of the Autistic community as any other autistic person. The Autistic community is kept alive by members from all walks of life, including those who live in group homes or other similar environments.

Perhaps it would be of interest to you to learn that ASAN is most definitely not run solely by those who are Asperger's autistic.  ASAN receives invaluable service, commitment, work, input, and collaboration from members who represent several facets of the autism spectrum.

On the contrary, I am well aware of what you assume I "have no clue" about. Let us momentarily move to my experience working as a Speech Language Pathology Assistant within a Self-Contained Classroom for high-school students on the autistic spectrum. 

One of my favorite students was a female who was nonverbal except for a few select vocalizations. She struggled to read early elementary sentences and books and also struggled with learning how to write and type. She lacked self-care skills, engaged in frequent flapping and rocking, screamed out often, hit herself, and had a lot of rigid rituals she needed to maintain.

At first, I did not know how to relate to this student. Matter of fact, she frightened me, especially when she screamed and commenced to biting herself. That noted, I never once saw her as a monster, or viewed her as someone who should be despised, hated, discarded, and left to dwell on the fringes of society. My instincts drove me to find out how to best speak *her* language. Within two weeks, we grew to understand each other and shared times that could rival the most beautiful sunsets on earth.

I am telling this to you because I often wonder what is so hard about accepting people who are different. Seeing as to how there is no cure for autism, should the girl I spoke of above, and others like her, have to live in shame for who they are? Why do we wish to stamp out and obliterate people we fear? Do they not deserve the same respect, rights, and understanding as any other human being? The girl above did not need to be a typical person to bring love and magnificence into my life and into the lives of others. 

Is it not my responsibility, as a fellow human being, to help those I can in the ways I know best? The Autistic community pushes only for what has been proven to help autistic people most.

I happened to notice that you are a Louis Armstrong fan. I love that song "What a Wonderful World." Are disabled people not also a part of this world? After all, we're all here for some reason or another. 

To accept or not to accept, that is the question.

-Elesia

10 comments:

  1. Hi. I just wanted to say I thought that was a very well-put response... and you were civil and polite all through it (something that a lot of people don't bother with when replying to certain people or certain opinions), to boot. I like this post.

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  2. Dear Fleecy,

    Thank you for your support! I'm glad to have you as a follower of Aspitude!

    This blog site will never be anything but civil and polite--on my end anyway. I use only positive energy and good intention in my work (despite having a mentionable temper--shhh).

    Best wishes!

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  3. Several Autistic community members refuse to distinguish themselves by type of autism, as it may lead to classism both inside and outside the community.This, as well as this

    It [categorizing within autism] is also subjective, as autistic people often have uneven skills.is why I often do not differentiate between autism and Asperger's in my writing, and eschew functioning labels. The same person, in different domains, may fall anywhere on the scale. Similarly, within a single skill domain, the sam person may vary wildly from day to day!

    (An example of that would be my verbal skills, both written and typed, although I generally fare better at typing).

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  4. Also, I believe the only major difference between "autism" and "Asperger's" is that people with Asperger's learned to talk on time.

    Doesn't even say anything about current verbal abilities, IIRC. Just developmental history.

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  5. Thanks for your valuable input Lindsay. You raise good points about how skills can vary in different domains--sooo true! Mentioning how an autistic person may vary in skill use from day to day is also worthy of significant consideration. I'm glad to have you as a reader.

    Best wishes!

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  6. Hi Elesia,
    I wasn't aware that deaf people could listen to music. Can you hear the music or do you just like the lyrics? The thing that makes What A Wonderful World a great song is the way Armstrong sings it, sort of like the way Calvin Borel rides a horse, uniquely.

    You have fallen for a false premise that entraps you a delusional world that is counterprocudtive to all people with any sort of autism. A beautiful young lady like you should not be abused like this by the monsters from Neurodiversity.

    There IS a cure for autism. I've done it with one of my son's. It works. When you remove the mercury that caused the brain to function at below peak efficiency, you remove the autism. People can think clearly, don't struggle with typically easy schoolwork and can go enjoy thier lives free of a disability.

    Curing autism is not inconsistent with accepting differences. The two go together. You don't accept abnormalities that can be cured. You fix them, something Ari Ne'eman and Neuroinsanity oppose.

    You'll note that I never said anyone should be despised, hated or discarded except, of course, for the leaders of ND who started this brainwashing of disabled people. That's how ND sucks in victims. They say the same thing that every parent takes for granted, that we all want what is best for our disabled children. ND blows this way out of proportion though, to make it sound like it's a good idea to allow the vaccine makers to poison people and damage their brains.

    There are no innate differences with autism. That's the lie that ND has sold you. Every person on the autistic spectrum was born normal. To claim anything else is simply untrue.

    Many of the people from ND are not the least bit autistic. They are propaganda experts but, so am I so, they demonize me while they try to hide from my exposition of their fraud.

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  7. Hehe. It's okay. I have quite a temper sometimes myself but I try to keep it out of the stuff I write, too :)

    It is a good point about the variable abilities/day-to-day differences too.

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  8. Foresam,

    Thank you for your input. This will, however, be the last time I establish contact with you. It is clear our views are different. While I totally see what you are saying, we're just not on the same page.

    I sincerely wish you and your family the best.

    Regards,

    Elesia

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  9. first time visitor--- rock on!

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