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July 12th, 2013 (10:04 AM).
Join Date: May 2012
Well, I saw this title and as an autistic person couldn't help but have a look, (and yes I have got the papers that say I have it and everything, I'm not self-diagnosed).
Before I address the actual topic I will say this, nobody is a "victim" of autism. It is something we are born with, it doesn't hunt us down and torment us. Even though the condition can be seriously detrimental to some people, and cause some serious problems even for those of us with a more mild variant (for example, I have high-functioning autism - which is not to be confused with Asperge's - and whilst it has caused some problems for me I don't feel negatively about it). It may frequently have an impact on the lives of those who have it, and even those around us, but autism is simply a part of who we are, it may not define us but we wouldn't be us without it.
As for the actual topic, using
kind of disability or condition as an insult is something that nobody should ever do. It is demeaning to those with the condition and helps perpetuate incorrect stereotypes. I would be furious if someone called someone who was bad at something (like artwork as you mentioned) autistic as an insult. Autism doesn't necessarily mean you suck at things, hell in a lot of cases it creates phenomenal talent in people (savants being the main example). Just because my mind is more-or-less a chaotic whirl (Pinkie's description of traits was pretty accurate, not surprisingly if they too have it) doesn't mean I'm inferior as a human being, so why should the word autistic be used as an insult?
What other have said about diagnosis is also quite largely true. Unlike a lot of other disabilities autism is quite hard to define and whilst there are a few common traits there is a very broad spectrum of the severity of autism and the traits that autistic people may or may not possess. Whilst I do think it is plausible that there have been plenty of misdiagnoses (I certainly don't think I was one considering how my brain works and what has happened in my life) I think that beliefs/comments like "autism is vastly over-diagnosed" and "autism is a myth" are a hindrance to the discovery of the disability in people who may need help to live their lives to their full potential, or need help to "live" at all. Honestly I think beliefs like that may very cause (or maybe very well have caused) a vast under-diagnosis of autism in society.
This all being said, autism is never an excuse for poor behaviour (especially if it is self-diagnosed...)
We may have certain social or cognitive hindrances but we are people just like anyone else and should be expected to behave appropriately. If I break someone's property in a meltdown, I should make damn sure it is mended or paid for. Maybe it's the autism talking but I like to see order and justice in the world.
How do I live my life with autism? I do the best I can. Yes I can have melt downs, and I like to arrange things into patterns and keep everything even. I have a chaotic mind, I don't sleep and I dislike change too. But there's no point in hiding away wallowing, nor in using my disability as an excuse to not go about my life. If it causes me problems so be it but I'm not going to let myself be defined by a single part of my personality.
If it is okay with the rest of you I also have a question to ask whilst we are on the topic.
For those of you who have autism or something similar, do you find that "social" interaction is easier when not done so in person?
I myself find talking to and meeting new people much easier online and I am certainly more outgoing in general. But I also find that it gets in the way of conversations on the phone more so than it does in real life.
"There's no disease in this world that can't be cured."
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