Tuesday, 5 March 2013

Autistic People Are...

As part of the Autistic Flash Blogs project - I am trying to highlight the fact that, even though the internet seems to abound with negativity about autistics, actual autistics are a far cry from what Google Autofill's pessimistic mind seems to suggest.

So, without further ado:

Autistic people are unique: We come in all different shapes and sizes but we're all connected through the mysteries of autism.  We are a community but we are individuals first and foremost.  We deserve respect just like any other person.

Autistic people are smart: Booksmarts may be a stereotype, but regardless of how we do in school or how we are perceived by the world, all autistics have their strengths and talents.  We are each brilliant in our own ways.

Autistic people should be able to express their autism: Everyone's autism "shows" in a different way - some of us flap, some of us hum, some of us count, some of us rock, some of us shake, etc. - but we all deserve the right to show our autism to the world without shame or discouragement and without being set aside as an outcast.

Autistic people should be able to communicate about autism: Sometimes, people forget that the real experts on autism are autistics.  Every autistic has value to our community and every autistic should be able to embrace and love their autism.  Every autistic should be allowed to teach others about autism.

Autistic people should exist: Simple, obviously, but some people might need a reminder that autistics aren't a burden on society.  In fact, autistics are a great addition to our world!  Autistics bring new thoughts and new ideas to share with the world.  There are many well-known autistics who affect us positively every day, and many more ordinary autistics who bring joy and wonder to those around us.  We all participate.  We all are loved.  We all are needed.  We are not a bad thing.

Autistic people do exist: Also simple, but every once in a while, I hear something ableist that makes me want to shout that autistic people are around and we hear and feel and understand what is being said about us, and sometimes it makes us angry and upset.  Autistics are here - whether you know us personally or not - and we don't like being disrespected.  Nobody likes being disrespected.

Autistic people are human: "People" and "human" are synonymous, so that's sort of redundant, but it felt important to add.  Because, even though some of us have differently wired brains, we're all made of chromosomes at the end of the day, and is the thing that connects us all.