Saturday, January 19, 2008

Neurodiversity on the Ship
A long thread worth the read

What growing up on the spectrum is like. At least when nobody knows what it is.
I do have a tendency to over-analyse these things and to look at the various outcomes before anything has actually been set in motion.
That’s a coping skill especially when you know why you’re doing it and understand that NTs (neurotypicals, non-spectrum people) don’t need to.
Oliver Sacks (neurologist) discussed religion and ASDs in an article I read some time ago. I don’t have a link to it, sorry. But what he said was that people with ASDs tend to gravitate towards and be more comfortable in religious groups that focus on ritual, tradition, liturgy...

Depending on what’s available where you live, you might consider trying an Orthodox,
[Roman] Catholic, or an Anglo-Catholic church.
I agree: nothing wrong with understanding how one got there.
At least in the US, churches that describe themselves as evangelical or non-denominational will tend to be the least Aspie-friendly.
A problem with touchy-feely services (where passing the peace is a big deal for example) is not necessarily coldness/being anti-social or an aversion to being touched. The spectrum kid might find the gestures mean rather less than they seem. In traditional liturgy nobody gets hurt. This is something a lot of spectrumites have to learn but it doesn’t have to be either/or. The hugs and so on are great — in the narthex or at coffee hour. The Mass and office are about Godwardness.
Most of the criteria used... are socially defined.
As somebody wrote in the thread linked in the first post a boy obsessed with football would never be diagnosed!
As I understand it, Tony Attwood has an informal category called “resolved” or something like that. (Thinking hard back to the seminar where I heard him talk.) Some people who are clearly Aspies in childhood learn enough social skills and the like that, at some point in adulthood (usually mid-30s or later, IIRC), they are clinically indistinguishable from NTs. They’re really not NT, but they’ve learned how to get along.
I think that’s the Holy Grail for spectrum people — not a cure, which is controversial in, for lack of a better term, the spectrum community (Attwood agrees). Cure says ‘you’re the children we didn’t want’ which should be abhorrent certainly to somebody who is pro-life.

This kind of success happens. Steven Spielberg and Dan Aykroyd are diagnosed with AS.

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