Paul Isaacs' Blog

Autism from the inside


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Autism & My Language Trajectory

A lady last night asked me about what made me have the ability to speak in an interpretation language in late infancy. Of course this is my own trajectory many other factors with information processing have to be taken into account.

Autism Stereotypes: Ditch Them

There is no such thing as “pure autism” so their are many differing roads to Rome. Being brain damaged at birth due hypoxia meant I have challenges around visual perception faceblindness, object blindness and meaning blindness and hemiplegia.

Language Processing

Language processing disorder meant I was meaning deaf so with having visual, language and auditory pathways blocked I found other ways to map the world around me in a kinesthetic manner using my hands, feet as my “eyes” and “ears”.

Oral Apraxia & Body Agnosias

Having oral apraxia and body disconnection meant even I found the words they would fly away in an ethereal and ghostly fashion.

A World Before Meaning & Interpretative Frameworks

When I was echolalic my language was more streamlined and fluid when I explored the aspect of interpretative language it was stilted, slow and mechanical this was an transitional point from pattern, themed and felt language to a more universal interpretative framework.

Exposure Anxiety

Exposure Anxiety was triggered and I disliked my “interpretative voice” and what it triggered every time others made my aware of myself leading to selective mutism.

A lot challenges I have have been overcome others are more residual in there presentation.

Paul Isaacs 2019


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So What is Simultagnosia & Semantic Agnosia? In The Context Of Autism?

Image result for occipital lobes and simultagnosia

Note: This is from a personal perspective

Simultagnosia is a condition that effects the occiptal lobes of the brain this is where visual perception and processing is connected, it also can have an impact on visual association, language perception/processing and overall navigation of the visual world around you.

“Blindisms” 

For me it meant not being able to access the visual world with coherence rendering me unable to access with my “eyes”and having to build up the visual world in a “non-visual” way such as.

  • Smelling
  • Touching 
  • Sculpting
  • Licking
  • Tapping
  • Moving

This started early in my development with my Mum’s observations thinking I was both deaf and blind (which is a common observation with people with visual agnosias) I was imprinting through EXTERNAL stimulus to build up a representation and connecting through other sensory modulations to make sense of the experience around me.

“Mapping” A System

As I have got older and with more awareness of the condition I have system in place where I do not hide anything from my view and placement of objects are important in relation to their context.

Context & Relevance

I still have a level of context blindness which means that things that are not being used “lose there relevance” (what they are, their use and function in relation to the environment) I may mistake objects for other things entirely and/or be caught up in how they make me feel rather than what they are.

Paul Isaacs 2019


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Interlinking Components Of My Alexithymia

Note this is from a personal perspective

Here are the inter linking factors which are language processing disorder secondary to dissociation, exposure anxiety, body and visual perceptual disorders.

  • I started dissociating at 7 years old, partly to do with being about 60 – 70 percent meaning deaf (language processing disorder).
  • Exposure anxiety and struggling to keep up interpretive meaning and awareness of “self”.
  • Having body disconnectivty (not perceiving the body as a whole).
  • Having visual perceptual challenges (face blindness, object blindness and meaning blindness 70 percent of information is visual so I was using only 30.percent).
  • I self harmed up until age 18 because of having a “emotional dumps” hitting my body which at times I did not trust myself with at.

Conclusion

Now I use art, poetry, creative writing to bridge the gap between emotions and self. 🤗

Paul Isaacs 2019


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Autism & Personality Types? Why Aren’t They Being Looked at Too?

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Autism  Personality Types? Why Aren’t They Being Looked at Too?

 There are many stereotypes and reductive views about what autism is and how it is presented sometimes it is a whisper that becomes so overt that it travels lengthy ways and gets ingrained and not challenged by the people it is supplied to.

Challenging the Status Quo?

The late Donna Williams (Polly Samuels) always was the eloquent trailblazer of challenging the entrenched status quo of what the word “autism” means. In essence it is an adjective and observational social construct of a set of characteristics. Moving forward to her “fruit salad analogy” she breaks it down into different types of information processing of differing TYPES and differing DEGREES that present an array of differing CHALLNEGES for the person.

Personality and Development

I have always been interested not only the developmental aspects that come with autism but also how personality types and their disordered extremes seem to get ignored and/ or not event recognised as a part of the person. I often wonder how damaging that could be if the individuals personhood is not seen then what is left?

Personality Types, Different Motivations, Different Presentations

Human beings have up to 4 to 6 personality types some of them ride along with each other quite smoothly, others are direct contradiction to one another, others maybe a more even mixture while others are so wild in their differences that it’s hard to pick them apart.

Personality types within people means they have

  • Different Drivers (wants, needs, belief systems and desires)
  • Different expression of language (expression, interaction)
  • Different ways of socialising (expression, understanding, preferences)
  • Different personal motivations (friendship and relationships)
  • Different “inner worlds” (mentalising and belief systems)

Example of “Autistic and Non-Autistic” Personality Types

Some of personality types may look more “autistic” in expression such as being conscientious and/or solitary while others not so much if not at all such as the mercurial and/or leisurely personality type.

Conclusion

What if some of the present issues in the person are to do with overlapping types that goes into “disordered extremes”?  And so the presentation is being inaccurately referenced, told and/or said to be “the autism”.

Paul Isaacs 2018


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Tinted Lenses, Visual Perceptual Disorders and Bridging The Gap Between “Non-Visual and Visual Worlds”

Note – This is from a personal perspective

Visual Agnosia Image 2017 

VISUAL PERCEPTION & AUTISM 

Some people on the autism spectrum have problems with filtering visual information which in turn distorts perception and what one is seeing, interpretation what someone takes out of what is being seen in terms of context and association and mentalisation that ability to internalise and integrate the visual memory in the form of a coherent, connected and retrievable memory.

WHAT TINTS CAN BE USED FOR?

If people live in a world of being object blind and meaning blind and ultimately context blind this can have an impact on socialising, bounding, learning and having the ability to retrieve multiple forms of incoming visual information at once. Tints work for people in different ways (if they are needed at all) – for some its sensory integration disorder, for some it is a level of dyspraxia, information overload and coordination, for some it is building up a visual context because of simultagnosia and/or semantic agnosia, for some its processing faces, for some its recognising and building upon and reading social cues, for some it is getting a sense of “self and other”, for some it is visual learning difficulties such as dyslexia, dyscalculia and being able to read and write with coherence, for some its aphasia and/or verbal agnosia and gaining a better grasp of language.

Donna Williams 2011

PERSONAL PERSPECTIVES 

70% of incoming information is visual and we take that information in as light waves – essentially as color. Tinted lenses are filters. They filter out different light waves. This reduces the level of incoming information which leaves a person more processing time. This can have different effects in different people. For some it may just help them relax more or feel more comfortable looking at faces or making eye contact, help them handle places with bright lights or being outside. For some it will allow them to read comfortably and with meaning or improve depth perception. For others it may help them better process language and ultimately speak more fluently. For some it may help them see things as a whole and recognise objects, faces, places, and begin to read context and social cues or have a better processing of a simultaneous sense of self and other.

Donna Williams 

Tinted lenses have helped me glue together a world which was largely bits and pieces that seemed shattered and unendurable, people shatter into fragments, objects floating with no clear base, foreground and background interchangeable, familiar voices with no face that seemed to match the warmth of familiarity. My language was also impacted to a certain degree with no internalisation of the visuals around me. Now I have tints they have made able to see faces with a level of coherence, looking at faces now I see a “whole” rather than “pieces” I am able to focus on their movements, body language and words, I can walk down the street and look at faces, places and people with a level with a level of coherence, I am able to better gauge “self and other” in conversations. I still have visual perceptual disorders however the tints have opened up and bridged my “non-visual to visual” world greatly.

Paul Isaacs 

Paul Isaacs 2017


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Classism, Bigotry, Racism, Right-Wing Politics and the British Empire

Racism & The British Empire

Image result for racism british empire

Classism, Bigotry, Racism, Right-Wing Politics and the British Empire was this really the UK in the “good old days”, when many a person was subjected to torment and ridicule based on the colour of their skin, when countries were invaded and taken over, when people were made slaves in their own countries, when the white man claimed to be “better” surely not this is something we must never forgot but much remember never to start up again.

Classism

Image result for classism uk

Classism what a word for people who think they are somehow “better” in this sew saw nation of chronic and painful imbalance from people living with gold and jewels to the poor lonely soul on the street with all his or her belongings around him what state to be in 2017.

Helping Others

In a country that has more than enough housing, more than enough resources let’s give these people the change to live safely, let’s help our NHS and keep our benefit system these are the cornerstones of and equal social society.

Conclusion 

We are all human beings but invisible barriers of ignorance rear their ugly heads it is shocking to the soul. I remember walking past a young lady not much older than me in Oxford asleep with all what she had near her and you think this is 2017 and this is still happening human beings are better than this we can do so much more for those people.


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Wretches & Jabberers DVD – A Journey Into Autism

Image result for wretches and jabberers

A moving and delightful movie and about two men on the autism spectrum who are both “functionally non-verbal” finding their voices through facilitated and typed communication. Debunking the myths that people who cannot speak with their mouths are “retarded” or “intellectually disabled”.

Tracy and Larry are best of friends and their passion for advocacy leads them to meeting others around the globe who are also yearning and fondly sharing their experiences and voices with a wider audience, showing great empathy, compassion, introspection and deepness through the words that they write to a wider audience. Bringing people into their world and inviting others to think, reflect and reevaluate what “autism” and “intelligence” even look like.  Showing great feats of creativity.

There is warmth, humour, sadness and hope sometimes all at once when listening the candid words and hopefully the viewer will come out of this experience with greater level of acceptance and make less assumptions about what is going on on the “inside”. Please all presume competence.

I highly recommend this DVD.

Paul Isaacs 2017