Monday, August 13, 2007

Autism as a lifestyle


  1. LOL, Where did you get the picture of my living room?!

    (Just kidding, but yes its almost that bad!)

  2. It's not his living room. It's my bedroom.

  3. My site is titled "This Way of Life" - I chose that title because autism *is* a way of life. That doesn't preclude it from being a disability, or mean that things are wonderful about it all the time. But I know when I live the autistic way rather than the NT way, things are much better for me...

  4. I appreciate that, Joel. I've had a really hard time coming up with the language for what I wanted to write about the different possible interpretations of "way of life", "culture" and "lifestyle" and how the more positive constructions should not be twisted to deny services to people who need them because of differences the larger society is not designed to accommodate.

    This picture is just one small piece of it, a response to my own fear, really, of needing to deal with another round of "how can you say autistics need accommodations and at the same time say autism is a normal variation or even something to celebrate?"

    Anyway, I regret that the title of this post sounds like it could be aimed at your site. That was not at all the intent of it; I respect the work you do very much.

  5. Oh, I'm sure Joel "gets" that. You "get" that, don'tcha, Joel?

  6. I am not so sure Joel does get it as his statement seems to suggest it is the condition of autism that is the disability rather than the situation of autism.

    A way of life cannot be a disability, but disability can be a way of life.

    Disability is not an internal restraint but an externally imposed result of a difference which is valued as negative.

    Many differences are valued as negative, from autism to not having enough money to eat properly.

    It aint the want of a limb that prevents one from travelling, but the necessity to travel without one.

    Anyway this is getting a bit too much Zen for me at the moment, I know what I mean and where I am putting the emphasis.

    A pile of crap is not an obstacle unless I unavoidably step in it.

    I probably just have :)

  7. Awesome Bev.

    On the disorder part, I know some auties who are neat-freaks, but it consumes them, sometimes almost to the point of paralysis.

    My paralysis comes in tidying up. I go from super-tidy to super-messy and then back and forth. It's like fixing the mess becomes overwhelming. As in, where do I start, which is why it's best not to mess things up to start with.

    So I emoathise with the aspies I know who have everything meticulously in place. They just don't want to be overwhelmed later.

    Order also brings peace of mind.


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