I watched the documentary "Loving Lampposts" today, I felt that it was well done and it showed a mix of high and low functioning adults and children on the Autism spectrum, it also questioned the use of those labels. They showed a fair argument from the anti-vaccine crowd and explained where they are coming from without calling them crazy, it also explains quite clearly that the main piece of documentation these people use other than their own personal experiences (study samples not controlled and way too small) has been refuted and many of the authors of that paper have retracted it.
They touched on some Autism spectrum disorders like Asperger’s Syndrome and PDD-NOS (pervasive developmental disorder not otherwise specified).
They also did a great job questioning the intense dread the public has about people on the Autism Spectrum, the media has successfully married the word Autism to some of the more extreme cases of classic Autism, characterized it as an epidemic and made people feel fearful they've done something wrong if they end up having a child on the spectrum.
I think that I may be on the spectrum, I've been studying the disorder since early this year, and the descriptions of Asperger’s syndrome fit me like a glove. Obviously I'm not some creepy movie character that exhibits every possible symptom at the same time, some don't seem to apply to me at all (or at least not anymore now that I'm older). I think I'll go and see a specialist about a diagnosis this year, I spent up my whole childhood and early young adult life knowing I was different and not knowing why, having a label for this thing won't change anything but it will give me peace of mind, and light up a bit of a roadmap of what kind of coping strategies might help me lead a more fulfilled life.
My studies have already highlighted several of my strengths and weaknesses, I've begun to capitalize on the strengths and use strategies I learned growing up and that were pointed out during the studying to help minimize the negative effects or to better explain to someone just how I process specific stimuli. Even if I don't meet the criteria for a clinical diagnosis, there's no denying I've got enough of a touch of this that some of these resources and strategies apply to me directly.
These people aren’t broken, I’m not broken, we’re different, and having different thought processes may allow us to come up with solutions that nobody has brought fourth yet.
The documentary is on Hulu at the moment.
This post brought to you from deep within the thought-stream of Tangent.