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Featured Is there an "ASD culture" If not, should there be?

Discussion in 'General Autism Discussion' started by Panthro, Jun 6, 2017.

  1. Yes, we need to take more control of our community

    13 vote(s)
    72.2%
  2. No, it is in our best interest to blend in with neurotypicals

    1 vote(s)
    5.6%
  3. I don't know

    4 vote(s)
    22.2%
  1. Panthro

    Panthro Active Member

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    After getting insight into deaf culture, from their language (sign language) to their attitudes about deafness, and their communities, etc. I am wondering if maybe us on the spectrum people may have our own culture? I mean we sort of have our own way of communicating, characteristics, etc. However, does it count as a culture? And should we take it farther by opening our own schools with ASD teachers, principals, etc?

    For those not familiar with deaf culture, they don't believe that deafness is a disability, they often almost seem like they want to be isolated from hearing people. In fact, they almost have a caste system where people born with deafness are on top, then those who have acquired deafness are sort of below them, followed by hearing people who know sign language due to having a deaf family member. They also tend to have their own organizations such as schools, where the staff is preffered to be all deaf people. There was actually an issue at a deaf school near me where they protested the hiring of a hearing person as the school principal. Things got so bad that the hearing principal ended up stepping down so a deaf person could take the position. So I am wondering if we should have something like that or is it better for us to blend in with neurotypicals?

    On another note, I wonder how deaf people feel about deaf people on the spectrum? I also wonder what they are like. Talk about having two strikes against you lol.
     
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  2. Kirsty

    Kirsty Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    Ooh I love this. Yes there should be a recognizeable community/culture for us. It would help others to become more aware and perhaps understand more about ASD. I do think they would benefit from our lifestyle in numerous ways by not putting so much energy into drama and socializing, saying what they mean and meaning what they say without hurting others, etc. You get the drift. I would make this post longer but I have to go to work. :)
     
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  3. WereBear

    WereBear License to Weird V.I.P Member

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    While I agree about ASD being Our Own Village, I also have some disagreements with the Deaf community about their "caste system."

    Their experience points up the importance of communication, and they also have a long history of being treated badly and thought to be "dumb" (as in lacking mental capacity) when they were simply non-hearing. It's possible they would not have achieved their present position without being such hardasses about it.

    But on the other hand, it's absurd to categorize people for things they have no control over.

    But yes, an intriguing point: perhaps we should be "loud and proud" the way other oppressed minorities have handled their lack of proper treatment. Because that does, eventually, work.
     
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  4. pax

    pax Well-Known Member

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    Side point, I've heard it's quite common for those in the deaf community to be quite bigoted, homophobic and intolerant, which quite surprised me. (I've heard this from both deaf and hearing people. One person I was aquainted with [before I blocked them] was incredibly racist, agist, and sexist, despite being deaf, physically disabled, and LGBTQI!) I was aquainted with one guy who had acquired deafness, who was trying to learn Auslan, and was told quite bluntly that he signed like a toddler.
     
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  5. Southern Discomfort

    Southern Discomfort Rambunctious Rambler V.I.P Member

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    Oh yes, there's an ASC community definitely, warts and all. There's some people who think we're better than other people and I do believe that we're the group which gets offended the most out of any part of diversity; something offends someone. And then of course people - who maybe out of ignorance, see themselves as the only neurodiverse condition out there and erroneously believe if you're not autistic that makes you neurotypical.

    But we also don't always think of autism as a disability but to me I think that undermines our struggles significantly. People not understanding us is the disability.
     
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  6. toothless

    toothless this is mr shadow,my support cat V.I.P Member

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    there is an under current of ASD culture out there but nothing like deaf culture where they have bars and cafes and so forth specifically for hearing impaired people.

    id love to live in an ASD community ran by people on the spectrum,we would have everything adapted for our needs for once,but i would also hope aspies would recognise the difficulties and support those of us on the lower functioning end of the spectrum instead of try to hide us somewhere else away from themselves like what happens on many ASD forums.
     
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  7. ZebraAspie

    ZebraAspie Well-Known Member

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    I don't want a hierarchy and I want to coexist with the NTs. I do see the benefit of more autism schools.
     
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  8. icesyckel

    icesyckel Well-Known Member

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    This is why we get offended so easily as a group, I think. We erroneously conclude that, because autism is a neurological condition it is not a "disability" or "disabling" like certain psychological conditions. That implies a lack of understanding of ourselves.

    First, some on the spectrum do suffer from physical and mental disabilities. However, even the highest functioning of us are disabled to some extent by being neurodiverse in a world/culture dominated by neurotypicals. I arrive at home every night after work with genuine intent to do X,Y, and Z only to find I lack the energy from having dealt with NT's all day long. I often crash, and my poor wife has to deal with my ensuing depression and exhaustion.

    Just because autism is a different way of thinking/being, does not mean its not disabling. People get offended by research for a "cure," and I get this, as a cure implies losing our identity/our sense of self. However, research for "treatments" does need to happen. I don't want a pill that will change the way I think, but effective ways of treating the problems that arise from being different is not a bad thing. A neurological test that would help us identify others like us earlier is not a bad thing. We need to stop thinking in such generalized terms on what are very nuanced issues.

    Southern is right: people not understanding (and dare I add not appreciating) us IS the problem (along with the side effects this causes for us). We only undermine ourselves, as a community, by trying to deny the problems we face and by trying to rage against scientific efforts to study autism.

    \Rant.
     
    Last edited: Jun 8, 2017
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  9. icesyckel

    icesyckel Well-Known Member

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    Here, here.
     
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  10. icesyckel

    icesyckel Well-Known Member

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    Btw, none of these works for me as an answer, and so I abstained from voting.

    I do know that: (1) we NEED more community (I prefer terms like "collaboration" and "cooperation" when discussing community rather the "control"); and (2) it is in our best interest to learn to peacefully coexist (and to some extent blend in) with NT's (and ourselves).

    These options are not mutually exclusive. I am, by nature, somewhat blunt. I have learned to be less so with NT's. Heck, I have learned that I need to be less blunt even with most Aspies. We all must, when in a community, in the presence of others, make reasonable efforts to be in harmony unless we prefer discord. Everyone must make sacrifices and changes when in the presence of others, including NT's, to coexist in harmony. When we are around each other or are alone, we need not make the same degree of effort.

    However, if I slap every NT in the face with my difficulties and order them to accommodate me and/or conform to me, then I should hardly expect a positive response. It doesn't work that way - no matter how much I might want it to, so I stop whining and make the appropriate efforts to live at peace.
     
  11. WereBear

    WereBear License to Weird V.I.P Member

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    And people who are African American are disabled by living in the American South because many of their fellow humans are white supremacists.

    Doesn't make it right, which is the point I wish to make.

    In fact, we should be treated far better than we are... who brought about this very world they live in? Arthroscopic surgery, smart phones, the Internet itself...

    GEEKS, that's who.
     
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  12. icesyckel

    icesyckel Well-Known Member

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    I'm not sure I would have used "many" with respect to "white supremacists," though certainly there are many "racists." Nonetheless, it's a good analogy, and it is true that disparate treatment is disabling to the subject in other contexts besides autism.

    I hope you didn't take me to mean otherwise?

    No argument here.

    I'm not sure what to say to this. If you're implying that all inventors are autistic or that the majority of autistic people excel at the sciences, then we might be perilously close to perpetuating a stereotype (though I have no problem with stereotypes so long as they are statistically accurate).

    Anyway, I get the (possibly erroneous) impression you're disagreeing with something that I posted, but I'm not really seeing it based on your response.
     
  13. WereBear

    WereBear License to Weird V.I.P Member

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    No, just bringing up a different slant. You are right, and of course, I am right :)

    True, all geeks are not scientists, though most scientists are geeks in one way or another. And autism is highly represented in IT; I know, I'm one.

    However, I see people with autism catching trouble both because of social issues, and also the mere fact they are intellectually curious, as well as visibly intelligent.

    I'm saying a lot of our difficulties are because of prejudice and misconceptions and myths. Any effort to eradicate that will benefit all mankind.
     
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  14. icesyckel

    icesyckel Well-Known Member

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    Yeah - I did not know I was on the spectrum growing up (or even that there was a spectrum), but I learned quickly to stop raising my hand in school if I didn't want to get in fistfights with the other boys. Normals so often resent when you know stuff they don't. I guess I get that - I wish I could dance or balance a bicycle, but I don't go picking fights over it either.

    Yeah, I agree completely. Information on ASD should be mandatory in health class or something. Some basic info injected into the populace at a young age could do so much.
     
  15. Questella

    Questella Well-Known Member

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    Social Tolerance Class. Could go over different races, cultures, sexuality, neurodiversity, and much more. But of course that'll never happen.
     
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  16. icesyckel

    icesyckel Well-Known Member

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    To some extent, all other categories besides neurodiversity are being covered either in school or in the media where I am, and I think it's more important to give ASD some air time and/or class time, TBH. Not to take away from anybody else, but we get the short end of every stick.
     
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  17. Gritches

    Gritches Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    Never mind need, because that's for an individual to determine, but wouldn't it just be nice to have an ASD culture? Wouldn't it just be nice to be among those like you, stripes among stripes rather than being a lone stripe in a world full of spots?

    Wouldn't it just be nice to be able to talk to other people without it being like walking through a verbal minefield? Wouldn't it just be nice to know that even if you don't say just the right thing the other person wouldn't sweat it because they understand why? Because they understand you, they understand what it's like to be you, and they understand you meant nothing by it?

    Wouldn't it just be nice to be understood by the institutions of society? Wouldn't it just be nice for who and what we are to be properly considered as reasons for things being other-than-neurotypical instead of excuses?

    Who here has warm, rosy memories of school? The more common story I hear is one of severe trauma, caused not by some sort of personal failings but rather by the virtue of not having already experienced those traumas which provide the impetus to know that what you are is wrong and that you must hide it from others upon pain of harsh, socially-approved cruelty and rejection. Wouldn't it just be nice if the kid versions of us didn't have to go through that?

    Wouldn't it just be nice to not live a life akin to pounding the round peg into the square hole? There are so many reasons I don't ever see it happening, the most cynical of which is that it would require neurotypicals to care enough to part with significant sums of money to make it happen. Oh well, one can dream, because wouldn't it just be nice?
     
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  18. Questella

    Questella Well-Known Member

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    Can we consider this forum to be our culture? It doesn't seem there are enough of us in one place to really do much else. I know of one kid that is ASD near me but he's probably in about 5th or 6th grade so I keep away from him from fear of his parents being like, "omg wtf" towards me. That's it though.

    There was some other aspie guy that was very near me that was talking me for a bit online but he lost interest in being friends after finding out I had a boyfriend.
     
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  19. Desiree W

    Desiree W Active Member

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    I'm not sure if any exist or not, but an ASD friendly store would be ideal. I'm not a big fan of shopping. I feel uncomfortable sometimes when there's not enough room in the aisles and there are too many people around. Sometimes, I can get freaked out when I'm looking at something and someone hastily reaches over me without saying "Excuse Me".
     
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  20. icesyckel

    icesyckel Well-Known Member

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    Men are so wimpy these days. BF? <Oh no ... runs away crying...> Yeesh. BF's come and go. It's not like you were married or something.

    Course you probably wrote that b/c it was crappy he didn't want to just be your friend? I am never 100% certain on what other folks are driving at with what they say/write, lol.

    Oh, I love shopping - too much. It's the best way to be around other people without having to talk to them. Also, malls are usually so clean and shiny/reflective. Good A/C too.

    People usually don't crowd me for some reason - even in a crowd. I still hate crowds, but I usually get a fairly wide berth from strangers. I can talk and act normal, but when I'm just standing looking at a display it's as if normals can tell I'm not part of their pack and shun me.