There is also another REALLY BIG LIE, and that is that autism is not a disability, just a difference ...in how people see the world and interact.
This marginalizes autism to the realm of a curiosity, not a crisis. Look at these two stories from the UK. The first one about a mother with SEVEN DISABLED CHILDREN, SIX WITH ASD. She calls for awareness, acceptance and understanding. Autism happens--learn to live with it.
The second story is about three sisters with high functioning autism. They call autism a "superpower," not a disability.
These stories are more proof that the world will do nothing to address autism as a manmade condition that has crippled millions of children around the world. We will continue to celebrate autism, study it with no real purpose, and try to accommodate more and more disabled children until finallly we won't know what a normally functioning person is like. It's happening right now in schools around the world.
Aug 23, 2017, (UK) ITV.com: “They’re amazing, I’m so proud of them”: Mother of six autistic children blogs about her life"
Blog written by mother of seven, Vikie Shanks, an advocate for better awareness of autism and mental health. These are her views which she is sharing with ITV Central.
With seven children, six on the autistic spectrum, the seventh with severe dyslexia and the youngest two also with cerebral palsy, life was never going to be simple!
Rewarding, yes; straightforward, no. All of this hands-on experience has equipped me with an armoury of tools that I use. I now write books, give talks, and offer mentoring to help and educate as many people as possible. It’s my life’s mission!
My beautiful children have a range of diverse challenges, from autism, demand avoidance, dyslexia, depression, anxiety, and cerebral palsy, to name but a few. Along with these challenges come sensory issues, rigid behaviour patterns, compulsive twirling, flapping etc…and significant struggles with school and social interactions.
Following my husband’s suicide 10 years ago I was also responsible for keeping house, looking after the children and running our corporate entertainment business. I was also applying for statements of educational needs and attending up to 18 medical/educational appointments every week…..
A person with autism is expected to live in a world that was designed for ‘neurotypical’ people so it shouldn’t come as any surprise that, statistically, they are more prone to experiencing co-existing mental health issues.
The world expects a lot from them. There are so many simple things that could be done to make their lives less stressful, and all that’s needed to accomplish that is better understanding, awareness, and tolerance of their differences.
If your child is on the autism spectrum, please talk about it with them. Help them to understand that their autism doesn’t define them.
Aug 23, 2017, (UK) ITV.com: "Autism is an ability not a disability...it is a superpower": Children blog about living with autism
Being Autistic doesn’t bother me but I don’t like to tell people as soon as I meet them in case they judge me on it, I prefer to wait until I know them a little better so they know me as ‘me’.
I don’t really focus on the fact that I’m autistic, although there are times when I do something and wonder if it’s because of my autism, especially if it’s something I don’t see other people doing.
I don’t remember being told that I was autistic, I just grew up knowing I was and talking about it to my mum. It really helped me to know because I could ask questions and understand myself better and work things out.
I still find communication hard but I’ve learnt strategies that help me and I’m not afraid to ask now as I’ve become more confident. Sometimes people will use sayings that I haven’t heard before which I find really confusing, but people don’t mind explaining what they mean.
My one wish would be for people to understand that autism isn’t the huge disability for most of us that people think it is and give us more opportunities to show our unique talents. Attitudes really do need to change! …
But did you notice those points are all negative or stereotypical? Why has this perception of Autism become so negative? Something I truly live by in life is you have a choice. The way you think is a choice. You can think something positive is negative and vice versa.
When I was told I had Asperger’s Syndrome I was 5 years old. I remember the moment clearly. My mother sat me down on the sofa and explained what autism was and what it meant.
My mum made the whole experience so positive that I was incredibly proud to be autistic. If it weren’t for my mother explaining to me at such a young age something that made me who I am with such passion and happiness I don’t think I’d be who I am today.
Autism is an ability not a disability. I am proof that autism if nurtured and understood positively, is a superpower.
Anne Dachel is Media Editor for Age of Autism.