autism

It’s that time again…

In two days, social media is going to be awash with Autism related posts to “celebrate” World Autism Awareness Day… I am guessing most of you know how I feel about this since I rant about it every April 2… but this year I am going to switch it up and do a pre-Autism Awareness Day post… so that I won’t be contributing to the noise of the day (unless of course the Facebook algorithms don’t put this in your feed until April 2)…
So all I have to say is, if you are already “aware” that there is this thing called autism that manifests in all kinds of different ways across all kinds of gender, class, and racial/cultural boundaries (I bet you can’t meet one person who isn’t already “aware” of autism)… then, I urge you to use the words Acceptance and Tolerance, instead of Awareness if you do want to make a post about autism on April 2.
If you want to spread “awareness” about something, then spread awareness about Neurodiversity instead… please.
One of the big problems with autism is the narrative that organizations like Autism Speaks, and celebrities like Jenny McCarthy and (apparently) Robert DeNiro form around it, which dismisses the Autistic voice, and calls it sick, and suffering from a disease…
It isn’t autism that causes suffering, it is  our individual,cultural and social/institutional response to it that does.
We need to pay very close attention to the autistic voice, and elevate it as the dominant one in how we, as a society, educate, employ, provide healthcare to, and care for autistic people…
The struggle is real, and the system isn’t working… let’s flip the narrative and let Autism speak for itself.
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