Thursday, December 3, 2015

Link: Ten myths about Aspies By Sam

Sam has been a long time blog friend. She has been a sort of accomplice to me in discovering all things Aspie on my journey. She was one of the first Aspergirls on the net that I connected to. I am often slack jawed at her accuracy of relating an experience very similar to mine. This is rare in my world. She also is great at making lists that are to the point but full of descriptors that help friends and family to side step ableism.

This post had me nodding with every word. My two favourite highlights are below:

"Myth #6: Aspies Need to be Taught by Non-Autistics How to Be in the World -There is nothing more insulting to most Aspies than another’s assumption that we need to be taught how to be in this world. Adult Aspies have taught themselves how to survive from a young age. We had to. We had to learn, imitate, and get by with our building skill set. We don’t generally welcome or appreciate unsolicited advice, nor do we have fondness for others who think because they hear a label that they know more about us than our own selves. We learn the best through self-study and through the companionship of other autistics. We learn the best when we aren’t preached to, told what to do, how to act, or set up for failure by mainstream’s expectations that we should somehow mold ourselves into being someone else."  
This is the bane of my existence and has followed me through out life. If someone will try to do this to me it is guaranteed that I will walk away or become a tad hostile. I am not easily influenced. I find that I have survived and mimicked and become more appropriate than most "normal" people in most situations. I know more about myself than most do and find the fact that it's assumed otherwise to hold the greatest point of contention for me.
Myth #10: Aspies Long For Attention - We sometimes share a lot about our struggles, about our autism, about our Aspergers. We might write blogs or share posters on social networks. We might advocate or speak publicly. We don’t have a choice anymore, because others who aren’t autistic have been largely speaking for us. And the information that often rotates through the masses is inaccurate, misrepresented, and/or stereotypical regurgitation that is outdated and false. We get tired of being told who we are and what we are and how to treat us and fix us. We don’t think we need fixing. We think others who lie, deceive, manipulate, and purposely hurt or ostracize others are the ones that may perhaps need counseling. We find our ability to maintain laser-sharp focus, to accomplish large endeavors, to create in a new way, and to find answers no one else knew were there, amazing! We appreciate are often off-the-charts admiration and adoration of nature, music, and animals. We appreciate those of us that our poets, those of us that our philosophers, those of us that are comedians, those of us that are scholars, and the like. " 
I used to get this a lot...the assumption I wanted attention simply because I shared my interests or spoke up for my rights or others. Now, because I have stepped out of so many forums I am probably accused more of selfishness, which I also know to be untrue, but I find it interesting that sharing equalled needing attention from others.  I also find that this happens as an accusation because we make interesting or counter cultural decisions that most view as attention seeking or reactionary...however, because our brains are different (mine with aspergers and my husband's with ADD) our reasons are often different then what the majority assumes.

 Self advocacy specially falls into this category. It's fine for parents of disabled children to have blogs and speak about their "tough" times or the issues but it is not ok for a person who actually has these things to tell it like it is. This is less accepted because it comes from the cultural context of disbelief that a person with these conditions can think, tell the truth, write, express or be reliable. This fact shows how far reaching ableism is in cultural mentalities. Self advocacy is frowned upon yet it is the most needed form of advocacy in any brain difference to combat ableism. I don't always write a post on Aspergers because I simply want to, sometimes I HAVE to because I want the world to be less ableist for my children and future generations. I am also sick of the condescending way brain differences are viewed. I despise attention unless it is from my husband or children or in a needed situation. I like to be in the background observing so I am glad Sam addressed this accusation. 

The other ten myths are point on as well. I hope you check out the link. Thanks Sam for putting time and effort into combating myths.

This is by Samantha and SO good for Aspergirls. I would highly recommend for any who wish to understand women and autism to listen while doing chores or watch during downtime:


FlutistPride said...

About #10:
I am an extroverted aspie. I need attention and approval to thrive, though I can survive without it. There is nothing I love more than stepping into the spotlight. I pretended to be an introvert in order to cope with ostracism, but my extroversion still shined through. Introverts can proudly say "I need no one to feel validated," whereas extroverts DO need attention and approval. I hate being dismissed as vapid or shallow just because I receive energy the external world rather than internally. My driving need is to feel like I have some semblance of power and control over my surroundings. I shut down when I feel like others are trying to restrain me or are unfairly preventing me from attaining the approval I need. The only way I can receive attention is if I seek it, so that is what I do. I seek attention through innovative ideas and self-advocacy. It is a healthy, constructive outlet through which to channel my driving need and it helps others. Some aspies are attention-seeking, but not for the reasons Nts think they are.

Yours Truly,
A Choleric-Sanguine (ChlorSan), ENTP-A, Inventor Rational and Type 4w5 Aspie

Kmarie Audrey said...

Flutist Pride: This was an excellent thought and to be honest I have never thought of it from an extroverted aspies point of view. I don't often hear from the extroverted autistics as much and I LOVE hearing that perspective! and I love your thoughts on why you would seem to NTS like attention seeking but for you it is in your personality! Love this! thank you so much for adding your voice and personality to this!

Ashe said...

Sharing interests is certainly awkward. People do like to assume it's a way to keep the spotlight on yourself or to make yourself look awesome by how smart you are. That's not the case with me at all. There have been a lot of times I've ended up in a bad situation due to lack of information, and my info-dumping, fact sharing, and trivia conversations are all kind of a way to try to prepare random people I meet for potential bad situations so they don't have to go through it. Plus some of it I just find highly entertaining and I want to share with them something they might enjoy as well. I came very close to becoming a stand-up comedian for a living because I enjoy making people laugh, but there's no way I can handle that kind of attention that comes with a performance, so now I just crack jokes to family, friends, and customers.

@ FlutistPride
I'm quite the introvert, but I totally under that suffocation that comes from being restrained. Your sense of balance comes from being in the middle of the room, my sense of balance comes from being outside the room and in the woods somewhere. Locking you up in a cage has the same effect as locking me up on a stage. To over-simplify it, extroverted Aspies are the other side of the coin most of us introverted Aspies stay on. Lots of similarities since we're of the same coin, but lots of key differences because we're on opposite sides. :)
(And I call being Tails! I always like Tails better than Heads. Might be that introverted thing because people prefer Heads over Tails, so I'd get less attention as Tails. Heehee.)