I have recently read a number of opinions and articles regarding certain - sometimes controversial - behavioural therapies and feel a need to attempt to express my own opinion regarding acceptable interventions in regards to children possessing neurodiverse natures.
I think that there is a need for the world to become more mindfully aware of the diverse qualities inherent within humankind and am opposed to any individual having to be moulded in order to conform to typical societal and cultural norms and values. (This does not mean I advocate lawlessness).
My life experiences have shown me that the way forward is via inclusion without condition. That is, if one needs to hide under a table awhile, then one should be given the freedom to do so. Forcing children into submission (whether they be neuro-typical or diverse in nature) only ever succeeds in restricting their true spirit and being and all too often serves to severely maim their personal evolution and development in the process.
I agree that there is a need for conditions to be set within society but I find it difficult to agree to conditions that are detrimental to the natural development, expression & evolution of an individual or group within that society. (Again, excluding attributes of lawlessness). Individuals should be able to freely be who they are in the way that they are and to overtly identify fully with the innate being within them. This goes for the whole spectrum of systemic bias that permeates our social, cultural and religious constructs. It is the way forward on the path of human evolution at a spiritual level - something that appears to be alarmingly lacking when measured alongside our technological advancements.
Although I respect all learning , including a respect for educational statuses to a certain degree, academia is nonetheless geared towards the teaching and understanding of neurotypical minds. The study of Autism is a new arena of learning within academic circles and I find it very hard to believe that any one might claim ‘professorship’ of the subject at this point in time, even moreseo, perhaps, if that person is not possessed of an Autistic mind, let alone regarding the inadequate amount of research and data available with which to study. Within the realm of education I have experienced both being the Autistic child within the system and as an adult, in aiding Autistic children within that system. It continues to fail them, miserably. How can this be acceptable within a civilised society?
Similarly, non-autistic parents of Autistic children should perhaps be ‘listening’ to their children instead of applying generic therapies built by neurotypical brains upon neurotypical theories. Ways and means do exist that can adequately aid children in adapting to the neurotypical world that do not require them to be socialised against their natural being. One of those is to simply explain what is required of them within a certain arena and why. (Children are incredibly intelligent and wise little beings - so much more than most of us give them credit for!) This strategy, along with educating neurotypical children regarding the differences in the way brains, thoughts and feelings can function and manifest (in ways they can understand) has been seen to have successful outcomes for all concerned because, in most situations, compromises can be reached whereby all parties are able to proceed in a mutually beneficial manner.
Why can’t we come into the notion and practice of celebrating and fully accommodating neurodiversity in all its glory?
Humankind may learn a great many things by so doing…
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