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Featured Disability, Difference, Or Both/Neither?

Discussion in 'General Autism Discussion' started by the_tortoise, Sep 9, 2019.

  1. it is a difference

    14 vote(s)
    31.1%
  2. it is a disability

    5 vote(s)
    11.1%
  3. it is both

    23 vote(s)
    51.1%
  4. it is neither/something else (can and will you please explain?)

    3 vote(s)
    6.7%
  1. the_tortoise

    the_tortoise Lost Soul V.I.P Member

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    Poll.

    I specifically said “your autism” and not just “autism” in the poll because I know people don’t agree and I just wanted to get a sense of the distribution of personal/individual perspectives of people on this site rather than to debate the issue ( but I knew a debate would happen so didnt bother saying this initially but since realizing it affects how people vote I am saying it now).
     
    Last edited: Sep 10, 2019
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  2. clg114

    clg114 Still crazy, after all these years. Staff Member V.I.P Member

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    I am autistic, but I am not disabled. If I do become disabled, it will be because age related issues, not autism. I am certainly different than those around me, but that does not bother me at all. I like being a individual.
     
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  3. Crossbreed

    Crossbreed Neur-D Missionary ☝

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    Basic autism is a difference (and somewhat of a handicap).

    Severe co-morbid conditions (on top of that) are a disability.
     
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  4. Mia

    Mia Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    It's probably both a disability and a difference. I've felt as if I didn't belong anywhere my entire life. Not in my family, hometown, in the cities I've lived in, even where I live now. Which has made me live life on the edges of society as an outsider.

    Have lived on the periphery of things, but felt most at home at art school. Where others spoke my language. Where it didn't matter how you looked or dressed or who you parents were, what mattered was how you expressed yourself on the page. And that was in a language that I didn't have to speak, I could draw or paint it.

    Have done a lot of things in my life; schools, jobs, travel, but it seemed as if I had to, it's what you're supposed to do. Not understanding myself, being somewhat unaware, out of touch, likely have something to do with autism. Not noticing life going on around me all that much as it relates to people, and caring about the natural world and animals more.

    I think my disconnection from others in real life now, have made them think I don't care about them. But that's not true, I think about friends, occurrences, relatives and family a great deal, if they only knew how much. Maybe it's because I've chosen less involvement and drama and a quieter life that I can now be who I really am, and understand myself far better.
     
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2019
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  5. Progster

    Progster Gone sideways to the sun V.I.P Member

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    At this point in time, I would say a difference, because I am coping and don't have any comorbid conditions except for anxiety, which I'm managing. When I was depressed, though, it had the affect of intensifying and making is so I was not able to cope with the anxiety or manage/hide other ASD traits, thus leading to my not being able to work or 'function'. So I would say (for me, at tleast) that it is the commorbid condtions which cause the inability. Having ASD means that other people might judge you and not accept you for who you are, but that's not the same as having a disability.
     
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  6. Suzanne

    Suzanne Well-Known Member

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    In order to receive govermental financial aid, I have to be known as disabled, despite the fact that I bulk at that, since it is just a different brain wiring to nts.

    However, I also have chronic social anxiety and agoraphobia, which comes under the banner of being disabled.
     
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  7. NothingToSeeHere

    NothingToSeeHere Asexuowl V.I.P Member

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    I responded "both" but actually I think that it can be both, but that it is not a disability for everyone.
     
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  8. Sarah S

    Sarah S Well-Known Member

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    It actually dont matter wich way we try to turn on this ASD = Autisic Spectrum Disorder (also known under disablity ) as is most of the comorbid diagnosis
     
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  9. Autistamatic

    Autistamatic He's just this guy, you know? V.I.P Member

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    Autism is a way of being.

    It is a neurological difference which can bestow gifts as well as limitations.
    It can also be disabling in a society which does not truly understand it.
     
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  10. Ken S.

    Ken S. Dog Cookie King V.I.P Member

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    I responded neither/something else here is my explanation.
    While I was a late bloomer I still didn't have many of the problems many on the spectrum have until age 47 when I went through chemo. Even now I do not think that autism is the major contributor to my problems. Most of those are due to an NDD (Neurodegeneritive Disorder.)
     
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  11. the_tortoise

    the_tortoise Lost Soul V.I.P Member

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    I see my autism as a disability and a difference.

    It is a kind of difference involving significant impairments, and I fail to see how you can have significant impairments and have that be “just” a difference and not a disability...that’s what a disability is, having significant impairments that most others do not have, whether you find a way to work around said impairments or not.

    Disability does not mean you cannot achieve/succeed with the right strategy/support/environment or that you do not have abilities and gifts and talents, including, perhaps, some you would not have without the disability.

    Disability is a type of difference. One that can be accepted/embraced.
     
    Last edited: Sep 10, 2019
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  12. the_tortoise

    the_tortoise Lost Soul V.I.P Member

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    One of the frustrating things about terms like “disability” is that their meanings are altered to suit different agendas and contexts. And people often seem, to me, to define them mostly according to the subjective values and emotions that get attached to them instead of using concrete definitions.

    Maybe I have a skewed/incorrect idea about what words like “disability” and “impairment “ mean. I truly do not know....it would not be the first time.

    It is one of the reasons I hate words and would often like to disappear into the forest and never speak or write to anyone ever again, just stop trying to understand or be understood.
     
    Last edited: Sep 10, 2019
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  13. Streetwise

    Streetwise very cautious contributor

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    Its a difference! but we are using neurotypical language, terms, anybody can be disabled ,the difference enters in how we perceive it :light sensitivity ,touch, smell, hearing ,so it looks more pronounced !as neurotypicals view everything from emotion not logic ,so we must be feared as they think only their neurology is normal, what if autism , neurodivergence was the majority ,would we discuss autism as a disability ?
     
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  14. the_tortoise

    the_tortoise Lost Soul V.I.P Member

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    If sensory hyper and hypo sensitivities were experienced by the majority then they wouldn’t be differences, either.

    I agree autism is a difference. I just also think it is, or at least that mine is, a disability.
     
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  15. Autistamatic

    Autistamatic He's just this guy, you know? V.I.P Member

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    There was a website once, a very witty one, of a fictional institute for the study of neurotypicals. In their terms, lack of hypersensitivity, inattention to detail, believing they actually know what other people are thinking, making emotional rather than logical decisions etc. were portrayed as impairments which could be severely disabling to them.

    An impairment is a difference which is perceived as a disadvantage, so whether it can be looked at as a disability is a question both of context and of subjective opinion.
     
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  16. the_tortoise

    the_tortoise Lost Soul V.I.P Member

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    If this is the only/main argument against calling autism a disability or impairment then to me it seems like nothing should ever be called an impairment or disability because it makes no sense to apply this to some conditions and not others.
     
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  17. Autistamatic

    Autistamatic He's just this guy, you know? V.I.P Member

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    You've hit the nail on the head. It's in the eye of the beholder. Remember the old adage - "In the kingdom of the blind, the one eyed man is King" - because in our world of binary vision, he will always be seen as defective.

    The terms "impaired" or "disabled" are neither objective nor absolutes because they are comparative terms. Their validity is dependent upon the comparator.
     
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  18. Ken S.

    Ken S. Dog Cookie King V.I.P Member

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    @the_tortoise With impaired in the equation I can say yes, I have impairments that at times can stop me from preforming tasks. I don't however consider it a disability as I can, with rest get what I need to get done accomplished. Clinically I am considered 100% disabled due to the fact I can no longer work at a job. It's all perspective.
     
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  19. Judge

    Judge Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    One can have multiple impairments, yet still lead a functional life.
    ...It's the nature and intensity of such impairments that can ultimately can define a recognized disability.
    Without ...a formal designation of being disabled, one is merely "different" by deduction- with or without various impairments that may or may not make daily life difficult to varying degrees. In the end it all seems to reflect comparative terms.
     
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  20. Crossbreed

    Crossbreed Neur-D Missionary ☝

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    I think that there is an (albeit subjective) threshold between handicapped & disabled.
    • "Handicapped" can meet the "basic functions" necessary for self-care, though it requires extraordinary efforts on the part of the subject.
    • "Disabled," try as they may, cannot.
    That is the gap between ASD1 & ASD2. Same autism. Different co-morbid load.
     
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