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Autism from the inside


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Militancy & Autistic “Culture”- The Dangerous 10 Degrees Of Separation Between People With Autism & People Who Aren’t


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“Autistic Militancy” Created Words & Created Perceptions 

Autism and Militancy The word “Neurotypical” has created a lot of problems in terms of its projection and use over the years. The implication and the “reverse” bigotry that flows with venom towards people who are “not like us” (people who are not on the spectrum) not only burns bridges but causes emotional unrest, invalidation and social-emotional friction that otherwise should not be there. The whole aspect of autism being a “culture” should not give people cart blanche or the freedom to treat others in way which could be deemed predatory, hypocritical and character destroying.

Looking at both camps in moderate and objective way offers a exception of one’s reality and openness to share differing realities, the trails, tribulations, the ups and downs etc.

* Then there’s Moderates (like me, my husband Chris and those on the spectrum and beyond who hang with us).   I have gut, immune, metabolic disorders, a mood, anxiety and compulsive disorders, visual and verbal agnosias, dyslexia and I’m challenged in the info processing and learning departments BUT I’m a master of adapation and I don’t go for cure but I do believe in treatment and management for severely disabling or limited health or sensory perceptual disorders.  So with me ‘normality’ is relative.  You can use the word ‘disability’ and I don’t think it defines all I am.  But I’m more comfortable with ‘disAbility’ and ‘disAbled’ which emphasised that I have many abilities as well as, sometimes because of my disabilities.  I also use ‘diffabilities’, ‘differently abled’ and prefer to use the term ‘challenges’ rather than ‘disabilities’.  When refering to those not on the autism spectrum I avoid calling them NT (I hate that reductionism).   I use the term diversity-friendly as encompassing ALL diversity, not just those with labels (ie gay, deaf etc).  Moderates on the spectrum are content to refer to themselves as ‘on the autism spectrum’ (happy to see ALL humans as having some elements of autism at least at some time) without seeing this as a ‘sell out’.  They tend to see their autism as part of, intertwined with but not the whole of their selfhood.   I use words like ‘support’ rather than ‘help’ (because support is egalitarian not paternalistic).  Militant Culturalists often see moderates as undecided, weak or selling out in the battle to advocate and educate about autism.

Donna Williams

“Culture” vs Objectivity and Realism – Why I dislike the word “NT”

Looking at what “reverse prejudice” is it is no better than what any other prejudice is reducing people to a stereotypical label and all the assumptions that go with it. Why should people off the spectrum be reduced firstly to one word and secondly that they are going to act in a certain predicable way? Also why should that be accepted a projection of hate, dislike is still a projection of hate. There is good and bad in all human beings regardless that is why I do not use the word NT nor do I see autism as a definer of someone’s overall character.

I recently did a tour through which I met some wonderfully kind, enlightened organisers and many carers and professionals who had, humbly, come to learn about alternative realities.

I met some autie spectrum people dotted about the audience, sharing rows with non-autie parents and others and many came up and met me.

At one of my lectures, though, I met some autie spectrum Aspies who came in as a group and sat, almost huddled together, away from all non-auties.

At the end of my lecture I asked ‘did you enjoy the talk’.

The leader of their group replied in a tone lacking in warmth, ‘it would have been better without any NTs present‘. The others chimed in in support of him. Alienated, I left them to it.

Later when they were buddying up with more of the same separatist rhetoric and there was a tone to it that sat uncomfortably with me, a tone I’d heard before, in hierarchical non-autie children in playgrounds once upon a time (where I’d also known nice ones).

I had to let this group know that I simply don’t do bigotry… that my non-autie friends are not typical, mundane, boring or expendable and that I refuse to use any derogatory term that hints they are such, such as ‘NT‘.

As you can imagine, they were quite taken aback. I was meant to ‘understand’. I was meant to be ‘one of them’. But if ‘one of them’ meant I was meant to hang out in a group and dislike or disrespect another group, and share this as ‘belonging’ and ‘shared culture’ and ‘shared understanding’ then this wasn’t ‘me’.

Donna Williams 

Autism has a culture that has been “created” but what people need to be aware of that the the word autism is an adjective a describer of an experience so it doesn’t define one’s own personhood nor humanity. People on the autism spectrum have personality types like ALL other people the main difference is the different types of blockages in expression and modulation. Here is a breakdown of those domains in basic terms –

  • Social Emotional Alexithymia  – The inability to recognise bodily sensation in terms of emotional frequency and trajectory
  • Social Emotional Self and Other Processing – The inability to keep “on track” in filtering one’s own thoughts and perceptions with of another and vice versa
  • Visual Perception I Simultagnosia – The inability to “see” things in the context of their relation to anything else only taking in parts of an image not “wholes”
  • Visual Perception II Semantic Agnosia – The inability to “see” with visual and/or associative meaning
  • Visual Perception III Prosopagnosia – The inability to recognise people by their faces
  • Language Processing Aphasia/Verbal Agnosia  – The level and frequency of word finding capabilities
  • Body Disconnection Oral/Full Body Apraxia – The inability to construct words, sentences in terms of formation

Egalitarianism We Are All Human Beings

If you strip away the passe destructiveness of autism stereotypes, militancy, the group think, separatism, egotism, narcissism and open the door for all realities to be explored by different people, perspectives and realities it would be much healthier and less hostile place. The only “club” I feel apart of is the “human being club” it has a lot of members about 7 billion in total I like it there. Everyone is equal and if realities and opinions are going to be heard/shared there should be a sensible and objective arena for them to be explored.

Paul Isaacs 2017

 

 

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“Autism” Isn’t A Culture – It Has Been Created As Such

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A CREATED CONSTRUCT

“Autism” is not a culture that is the premise of this post looking at the the diagram above you can see in simple terms how a “culture” works firstly it is a social construct it has been consciously created by other people, adapted, worded, it has its core values and within those vales it its has rituals, and within those rituals it has its “heroes” and within its heroes it has its symbols of recognition.

SAY YOUR PRAYERS AND TAKE YOUR VITAMINS 

Why is this a worry within the context and confines of autism because what if you don’t fit the culture? Follows rules? Pray to the right “gods”? Follow its values and customs and overall practices? Does that mean you have gone to the “dark side” that your value has been lessened because you don’t follow suit?

WHAT IF YOU DON’T FIT? ARE YOU REALLY THE “ENEMY”?

What if this construct  is the very problem within the autism “world” what if is the overall restriction for commenting you own reality that doesn’t fit was the status quo? Why should a open and honest dialogue be challenged because is doesn’t fit in with what is going on? That to me that is the ultimate reverse prejudice you cannot talk about this sort of isolation if you are practising and enforcing that types of isolation (even if it is in the name of a “good cause”).

REFLECTION

I am by no means the brightest but something is wrong here. I am all for advocacy, information sharing and above all honesty and truth but that is so  that all realities are to be taken into account. Even if they are tough to hear they are valid part of the learning process surely?

LIVE YOUR LIFE AS A PERSON 

The best examples of living life is by that very nature living it, ignore the politics, passe customs and overall dogma and just “be” there something fulfilling about just “being” and existing on a personal note my Father has helped by example to do this because life is short.

Paul Isaacs 2016


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“Autism” Is Not A Single Thing – So Why Is It Still Being Presented As That?

20160730_121048DIFFERENT PRESENTATIONS 

No one “owns” Autism that includes me, you the person next door- I think it is important to know what “autism” and “asperger’s” in terms of profiles are the presentations that come with them.

POSSIBILITIES AND OPENNESS  

What are the components? (information processing, environment, mental health, personality, identity, learning types) By looking at these pieces you can understand what to do (or not to do) there are many different paths so by being open to possibilities.

GOING AGAINST THE GRAIN

I know my views aren’t popular for one because they go against the status quo of “neurodiversity” that is fine.

LOOKING BEYOND THE RHETORICS

Has anybody wondered what autism really is? Has anybody can beyond the passe rhetorics, memes or generalised views to know how to understand it? To empower  people with autism, their parents and professionals etc?

LOOKING DEEPER MEANS LOOKING AT WHAT IS THERE

Isn’t it time to know what makes up a person on the autism spectrum?  Dig deeper? I can tell you this is what my autism is made up of –

  • brain injury
  • hemiplegia
  • developmental delay
  • speech and language delay
  • language disorders
  • tic disorders
  • mutism
  • related anxiety disorders
  • personality disorders
  • learning difficulties etc.

This took six years of research and self-reflection to get to this point.

 I say to people reading this do not remember me for saying but remember the template that is being presented and what you can relate to and do not relate to

LETS THINK ABOUT IT 

For a so called “accepting autism community” I have seen plenty of internal upset, bullying, gas-lighting, trolling,  arguing, tears and upset to last a life time. Autism has created a “culture” around itself and personally I have seen nothing healthy come out of it. I came into this in 2010 with my parents we quickly got out of it my parents still don’t “get it” the militancy by people on and off the autism spectrum and I have recently been reminded of why I stay clear of it.

The people and parents who seen themselves as human beings first  (not defining by their “autism”), who are living their lives not consumed by labels and redundant definitions are the ones who are great examples.

This isn’t a game and when you are toying with people’s feelings directed at people who dare to above the parapet a speak from the heart and not tow the line Is this fair? I am all for healthy disagreement lets start listening.

Paul Isaacs 2016


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Over Generalisations In Autism

20160730_114554When people think of autism? One may need to consider this that is has never been a singular thing. In my previous blogs I have mentioned people like Donna Williams and Manuel Casanova who in their own unique style content has indicated through different observations and experiences that autism is not a generic, unmovable or flat presentation and that the components are different between person to person. That in turn means that different sources of help, aid and empowerment would be needed. It is very individualised.

Generalisations? Too Easy To Digest?

Generalisations are easy to digest I suppose they create a bubble in which the person has these sets of “traits” and one goes from there,  to point out the massive differentiation in autism it is surely more than healthy and beneficial? Also leading  finding why and how the person in question could be helped and empowered.

The Issues Around Autism “Culture”

“Autism” is not a culture that (to me) doesn’t make sense at all fitting into one individual into   culture means surely you are treading into many further degrees of separation which for me is very uncomfortable to consider or even acknowledge as something I would want to do or pursue as a goal.

To over invest in a label  means you are seeing your self as a single thing  and one definable thing and not seeing that like all human beings ALL people have different interacting personality types, environments, experiences, thoughts and feelings.

Something I strive for seeing the validity of being rather than over defining. This relates very much to over generalisations of “us” and “we” do this and “us” and “we” don’t do that if you step back think about this scenario and ethos is that (as the bigger picture) over time helpful?

Conclusion

The “autism world” has many hidden voices and experiences that people need to hear acknowledge and affirm reality for them – I once wrote in a previous blog that it is about listening to ALL people’s views whether they are parent, professional, person on spectrum or person off the spectrum.

Breaking down barriers of generalisations will lead to hopefully an fuller open dialogue in which we CAN learn and acknowledge from others with out man-made barriers which have been created in the “autism world.”

Paul Isaacs 2016

 


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We Left The EU But Things Still Need To Change

An Opinion Should Not Be Force Fed 

Well we left so now what do we do? It’s a question on everybody’s mind who both wanted to be in and out – we will all have our different views of what should be done. I do not hold much clout with the people who done it because they were covert or over racists, nor people who wanted a quick fix for obscure smoke and mirrors memes that had more more bullshit in them than the farmer’s field next to me.

Divisions? 

Tell you what I am sick of preying on the sick, elderly old and vulnerable in society, the homeless “that should have done more” What if they done their best?, the old man or woman “who society doesn’t give a dam about.” What if old he or she wanted was a friend and someone to talk to?, the man or woman with cancer “who is fit for work” What about all those years he or she did?, the foreigner who “should go t back to were he or she came from” what is if going back meant being killed? Poverty or worse?

Rich Fuelled Society?

A top down society where the white elite hold more grounds, money and wealth to end all of world poverty? What about a basic standard of living for all which meant no one was to suffer or have additional issues that wouldn’t be there.

More Money Lack Of Care?

Society has been blinded by two things the first is Money money, money, money that is all about these days I want more money to buy my house, I want to invest, want more and when I get some more I want more and then some! The god of many the devil to some don’t you think? It promotes a lack of care for human beings with its shallowness and societal profiling.

The next thing is care. Yes care do “we” actually care anymore? About others what sort of society are we being fed? A generic, money making, I step over you to get to the top, cooperate, me, me, me attitude riddled rhetoric.

Hope Continues 

Here’s the hope folks it is about bridging society, communities, creeds, colours, races, genders, sexuality, young, old and disabled. Its about having an NHS, fairer society security, a moral basic standard of living. To break the hate it starts at the grass roots and that is where it should start. There is hope.

Paul Isaacs 2016


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No One Should Be Poor – The Top Down Society

Social Security – Why make cuts in the first place? 

People with illnesses and disabilities should not keep “proving” something that they have and then run the risk of losing income because of “cuts”. Social security was put in place to aid and support the vulnerable in society – social security should not be up for cutting anymore as the price of living is increasing.

Remember the value of having a welfare and social security system

The problem with cutting welfare is it defeats the object and intention of what welfare is and who it is for people may have hard times in their life this not to say that I would want this on anyone but it can and does happen to people and wouldn’t it be moral and productive to help?

Different trajectories and reasons for using welfare and social security 

For example a person may lose their job and need a transition period between jobs  or they may have an injury or illness that means they are off work for a long period of time or have to (in some circumstances) quit work altogether.

Some people may acquire a disability in their life time such as a head injury, physical injury or both, some people may be born with such disabilities and/or illnesses.

The National Health and other National Services 

Privatising national services -does that work? 

Everybody has the right to enter all forms of care in their lives from the basics such as general practitioner appointments, dental appointments, hospital appointments, “social” housing and other services that fall under national or local services. If you over privatise you are falling into a a “top down society” where it falls down to money and the people who are able to afford such services can but other’s may not be able to even get the basics.

This to me is a huge step backwards in both morality and common sense the national services are meant for everybody this means that is doesn’t matter where you are in the “class system” it is for “you” – I am glad that people have been supporting the nationalisation of NHS (which if you think about is odd that a “public service” is becoming “private”) I have faith that this will prevail.

Conclusion

In order to see the logistics one must filter through the nonsense the money deficit in this country doesn’t make sense when millions is being spent on one thing but not on another. If it continues to be used as reason for such cuts that keep happening then how deep can cuts go? It seems that people have rightfully being challenging the cuts and telling their stories of what it is like for them, their friends, families and people’s communities.

I live in hope common sense and a simple act of morality will prosper. Socialism in its true form is not flawed it is about building a fair, democratic equal society that is what people in general should strive for.

Paul Isaacs 2016


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The Political Landscape Of Tomorrow Becomes Today

CenobiteReflective Thinking 

I don’t usually talk about politics but today I woke up to a Conservative Government a this is truly worrying for me – my parents lived through the hardships of the the earlier Conservative government in the past. So if you want cuts to your NHS, benefits and social security lampooned and made light of with stereotypes a plunder to induce further cutting, bedroom tax, elderly fuel allowance cut, pension ages to rise, employment to rise (but at what emotional cost!) and the constant propaganda about the deficit needing to be tackled when “money” can just be created anyway, the broadening of the rich/poor gap while they sit idle on there ivory towers looking over their “kingdoms” they have created then congratulations you have got it. Welcome to hell!

However…read my next post for some more reflective thinking. 😉

Paul Isaacs 2015