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So then let's hope

Atrapa Almas

70% INTJ + 30% ASPIE = 100% HUMAN
V.I.P Member
When I was a kid, in Spain, I asked my mum why should I have to look for cars before crossing a crosswalk.

Cars are who must look for people, and they must stop. Not me.

My mum told me that I was rigth, but being right was not stopping me to die if a car hit me. Looking for far before crossing was to save me.

So yeah, you are right. The world must accept you as you are. Just keep masking before crossing NTs way.
 

Duna

Well-Known Member
V.I.P Member
So yeah, you are right. The world must accept you as you are. Just keep masking before crossing NTs way
Not sure how to interpret this.
But to stay with your example: A car that hits me might kill me. A NT person can't (unless of course it's that person's intent in the first place and then it's not a general ND/NT problem anymore)
 

Gracey

Well-Known Member
V.I.P Member
Autism Treatment Shifts Away from ‘Fixing’ the Condition

Again an article I found interesting, maybe because it supports my POV - I don't mask anymore and I refused therapy to learn the skills "necessary to find a partner".
Great article.
especially like the "Nothing about us, without us"
High time an individual/family had input into (potentially future) required skills as there doesn't appear to be an effective one size fits all method.
 

Atrapa Almas

70% INTJ + 30% ASPIE = 100% HUMAN
V.I.P Member
Not sure how to interpret this.
But to stay with your example: A car that hits me might kill me. A NT person can't (unless of course it's that person's intent in the first place and then it's not a general ND/NT problem anymore)
I try to say that even if people should accept you as you are, the best way to be accepted, get a job, not being bullied, make friends, etc its some degree of masking. So if you dont mask, despite being right in not masking, you will face very negative consecuences.
 

Knower of nothing

Well-Known Member
I try to say that even if people should accept you as you are, the best way to be accepted, get a job, not being bullied, make friends, etc its some degree of masking. So if you dont mask, despite being right in not masking, you will face very negative consecuences.
Flipside of this is that not masking removes the filter and allows you to more accurately detect good people and through this build a REAL network.
 

AprilR

Well-Known Member
V.I.P Member
I had no choice but to mask since my youth. I suspect my parents' marriages wouldn't Last (my father is also autistic i think) and my Mother's mental health would get worse if i didn't do that. I had no other choice but to deal with everything on my own.

I am glad people are getting more informed nowadays at least in the US.
 

WhitewaterWoman

Well-Known Member
V.I.P Member
I've been working with people with autism for more than 20 years. Most are much lower functioning than those of us who can use this forum. But consider this situation:

I had a client with autism who could use sign language to communicate. But her mother wanted her to "use her voice." Her mother literally spent all day chasing her around the house, trying to make her "use her words" and conform in other ways as well. The mother is also the legal guardian. She can do this to my client for the rest of her life (the mother's). This is a horror.

And it is not an isolated incident. Just one simple enough to explain here in a few words.

When I was growing up and in school, no one knew anything about autism. There were no "special ed" classes. I benefitted from this. No one was trying to fix me as a person, although there were attempts to make other changes.

I also benefited from being a young adult during 60-70s when unusual behaviors/life styles were much more tolerated.

I believe young people growing up today, with autism, are subjected to far more pressure to conform than those in my generation. It would benefit them to be treated with more respect for the choices they make to live a life that does not crush their neurodiversity and use up all their intelligence and energy to conform to NT standards.
 

Neonatal RRT

Well-Known Member
V.I.P Member
Autism Treatment Shifts Away from ‘Fixing’ the Condition

Again an article I found interesting, maybe because it supports my POV - I don't mask anymore and I refused therapy to learn the skills "necessary to find a partner".
clapping-hands.gif
 

Duna

Well-Known Member
V.I.P Member
I try to say that even if people should accept you as you are, the best way to be accepted, get a job, not being bullied, make friends, etc its some degree of masking. So if you dont mask, despite being right in not masking, you will face very negative consecuences.
Okay. So I did get it right.
I did mask a lot, but never learned social skills, as there was nobody to teach me. I still did manage to get jobs, make friends, and never was really bullied because I wouldn't let that happen. The part where I masked the most was the friend part, and then those friends developed in another direction like get "serious" jobs which I already had, and raising families which I never wanted. And now I realize that the people I would like to be friends with are not your mainstream-NT-folks, and more often than not have a dozen more problems with existing in the NT-world (even if they themselves are NT) tha I have.
So why bother to mask?
 

Duna

Well-Known Member
V.I.P Member
When I was growing up and in school, no one knew anything about autism. There were no "special ed" classes. I benefitted from this. No one was trying to fix me as a person, although there were attempts to make other changes.

I also benefited from being a young adult during 60-70s when unusual behaviors/life styles were much more tolerated.

I believe young people growing up today, with autism, are subjected to far more pressure to conform than those in my generation. It would benefit them to be treated with more respect for the choices they make to live a life that does not crush their neurodiversity and use up all their intelligence and energy to conform to NT standards.
I did get tested because I showed "unusual behavior" but at that time the people who did those tests didn't know much about autism. So I was labeled "high IQ but low social skills". And the high IQ was what made me pass as "normal" and the behavioral issues explained a s a "phase".
I entered my teens in the 80s, and by then I was attending a boarding school with all kinds of people, a little colorful bubble that was perfect for me. Went on to be best of my class, and though not popular in the mainstream way, I was respected by the mainstrem popular because they though I was so cool being different.
That said: Being myself and not trying to be someone else worked fine for me. Of course I had moments when I had no idea what was happening: friends settling down, serious jobs, raising families - had a hard time with that. Having my own company but not being able to even open a bank account, forget about dealing with tax investigators... ended up in jail for that. And know what? I was a great experience!
If someone asked me today what I would change in my (past) life I would say "I wished I would have diagnosed earlier". Because all the energy I put into figure why I, high-IQ person I was labeled at age 10, ended up being such a loser.
And now that I know, it almost seems too late. Not because of age or means, but because I'm drained of trying to fit in, to "make" it, to fulfill other's expectations.
 

Neonatal RRT

Well-Known Member
V.I.P Member
@Duna ,
Given my background in medicine, I have always approached autism from the medical model,...the primary behaviors core to an autism condition are as a result of the anatomy and physiology. The psychological and psychiatric conditions are downstream effects. Furthermore, like any other organ in the body, the heart, the lungs, kidneys, liver,...and the brain, may have anatomical and physiological features that are as a result of genetics,...autism being one example of many. So, with my background, I don't treat autism as if it has any sort of stigma attached to it,...it is what it is. I know that is not the case with many people and how they treat anyone else who is "different", whatever that may be. Now, I can say, "Well, that's their problem, not mine." However, all too often with us,...they make it our problem,...and that's where the difficulties start. "I am not disabled,...it's not like I am paralyzed from the neck down with a spinal cord injury,...but you, your actions, your expectations, this environment,...you're disabling me."

Now, how is it that many of us older autistics (50+ year olds) held jobs, lived our lives and frankly, were not diagnosed until fairly recently? The wrong answer was that we didn't have autism,...that was reserved for severely debilitated children and residents of psychiatric facilities. The right answer is that we did have an autism variant with a higher intellect to learn how to hide our autistic behaviors,...and "no" we didn't have a professional therapist to help. We learned under threat of punishment from our parents, and through life experiences. As far a sensory conditions,...frankly, I had just enough social and communication issues to not ask if anyone else experienced their world like I did. "What? You mean everyone doesn't have 5 frequencies of tinnitus? Everyone doesn't have a visual field of pixelated dots and light flashes, awake, asleep, eyes closed? Others can't hear all that high-pitched noise and hear electricity humming in the walls?" So, I wasn't diagnosed until 52 years old.

But more to your point and my point here. We need to stop "fixing" people because they are different. We are here,...deal with it. However,...I don't see society making the types of meaningful changes that allow us to be the types of productive citizens that we could be. One of the things that makes life worth living is a sense of purpose,...and being responsible for something gives many of us purpose. Take that away,...I am not sure what there is to live for,...and from some of the posts on this forum,...that has happened to some of us. It's tragic. So, I think the best step for psychologists and physicians to take is really find out what it is that is holding us back,...then address each issue head on. For some, it may be anxiety and stress,...well, there are specific ways to train the mind and body to deal with it,...in healthy ways. If left unchecked, it will become a medical condition,...high blood pressure, high blood sugar, vascular disease, cancers, immune dysfunction,...it will flat out kill you. I work in a very, very stressful environment,...I have discovered ways to handle it. I can handle ALOT of discomfort and still function. Whatever our specific issues are,...and no two of us are exactly the same,...we need to focus upon the mind-body connection and work on those,...adapt and overcome. We also need to not be so sensitive and be a bit more disagreeable,...stand up for ourselves when we are clearly being faced with BS. For example, there are "bad bosses" everywhere,...and he/she may have hired you because he/she may have sensed the type of personality "weakness" that would allow them to run "roughshod" over you,...because you won't complain for fear of being fired. Well, that is what I call BS. On the other hand, if you walk into a job interview with the approach that YOU are doing THEM a favor,...that power dynamic changes. You are less likely to be dealing with a "bad boss".

I can go on and on here. An autism condition need not be "fixed", but there may be situations where we still need some help to deal with the specific issues that seem to be holding us back in this world. I don't expect the world to change, I just think a different mindset and approach to autism is needed though,...from ourselves.
 

Duna

Well-Known Member
V.I.P Member
@Neonatal RRT thank you so much for your post!
I don't see society making the types of meaningful changes that allow us to be the types of productive citizens that we could be.
Why would they? Society's goal is to make everyone the same.
I don't see society making the types of meaningful changes that allow us to be the types of productive citizens that we could be. One of the things that makes life worth living is a sense of purpose,...and being responsible for something gives many of us purpose.
Purpose. What would that be? All my thoughts about philosophy, religion (which I truly despise, no matter what kind), history, social issues, you name it. For me, the only and sole purpose is life itself. We have a certain amount of time until we cease to exist, so make the best of it.
That's my personal purpose and it has worked well for me. But I'm aware it doesn't for others, so...
I don't see society making the types of meaningful changes that allow us to be the types of productive citizens that we could be. One of the things that makes life worth living is a sense of purpose,...and being responsible for something gives many of us purpose. Take that away,...I am not sure what there is to live for
Of course. No purpose makes it hat to get up in the mornings.
Whatever our specific issues are,...and no two of us are exactly the same,...we need to focus upon the mind-body connection and work on those,...adapt and overcome.
And that's where I begin to think about thng like "ASD people don't like changes" - which is an inability to adapt. But on the other hand, ASD people have ways of overcoming hurdles NT people struggle with. And eventually they will find a solution, even it's not the one everybody expected.
We also need to not be so sensitive and be a bit more disagreeable
Fact.
An autism condition need not be "fixed", but there may be situations where we still need some help to deal with the specific issues that seem to be holding us back in this world. I don't expect the world to change, I just think a different mindset and approach to autism is needed though,...from ourselves.
Yes. And I'm happy my mom and step dad are aware of it and helping me to restructure my financial security in a way that won't crush me should anything happen to them.
 

Au Naturel

Au Naturel
Others can't hear all that high-pitched noise and hear electricity humming in the walls?"
LOL! When I was a kid I heard all kinds of things that even other kids couldn't hear. The old CRT televisions drove me crazy. And then again when I was an adult working tech support, I'd go in and change the refresh rate on the monitor to the highest I could. That didn't mean I couldn't hear it - but the difference between 60 and 70 Hz was dramatic. 75 Hz was barely audible, but not every monitor could do that.

I was really sneaky about it because I knew supervision would get all tweaked if they knew I was changing anything. I also knew they'd never give permission if I asked. They had people monitoring our systems, but the monitoring didn't occur until we logged in to take calls.
 
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Au Naturel

Au Naturel
Not sure how to interpret this.
But to stay with your example: A car that hits me might kill me. A NT person can't (unless of course it's that person's intent in the first place and then it's not a general ND/NT problem anymore)
Another person can arbitrarily - for reasons you may never understand or even know - take a dislike to you and make your life miserable. You've just been hit by a social "car" that didn't stop. OTOH, one should not be a voluntary impediment to traffic. Drive defensively but not fearfully.
 

Luca

charm & chaos
V.I.P Member
I'm so glad this is being researched and learned about. I wish they had abandoned the "fix it/cure it" mindset when I was much younger because my life was ruined (and my mental health was permanently destroyed) by people who were trying to "fix me" and essentially beat the autism out of me. I'm still physically and mentally scarred by ABA and people who were trying to threaten/harm me into "acting normal."
I almost died in a residential facility because of this. I know my situation was very extreme but it's sadly far from being unique and isolated either.
 

Outdated

Well-Known Member
V.I.P Member
I wish they had abandoned the "fix it/cure it" mindset...
....people who were trying to "fix me"....
This is also my experience. My family, kids in school, teachers. As a child that is your entire social society. Your entire sample of humanity, not a good way to start out in life.

I had a few benefits that most don't, I was lucky. My grandfather and my great grandmother were different, they liked me just as I was. That and the fact that I'm the most stubborn bastard any of you ever met. I refuse to be psychologically lobotomised.
 

Au Naturel

Au Naturel
I'm so glad this is being researched and learned about. I wish they had abandoned the "fix it/cure it" mindset when I was much younger because my life was ruined (and my mental health was permanently destroyed) by people who were trying to "fix me" and essentially beat the autism out of me. I'm still physically and mentally scarred by ABA and people who were trying to threaten/harm me into "acting normal."
I almost died in a residential facility because of this. I know my situation was very extreme but it's sadly far from being unique and isolated either.
 

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