Verbal Communications Differences and Difficulties Sticky

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LabPet
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02 Aug 2008, 1:34 am

I have an idea! Let me tell you first before you say no.

Ahem: May there be a special section, like in the Forum (?) for those of us Dxed with Autism (I am a HFA, technically) who are mute &/or partly mute? I am partly mute and use a DANA to facilitate instead of verbal speaking.

Further, for those with this classification, there are special dynamics and needs associated with this variant within the autistic spectrum. I'm sure those of us 'mutes' would appreciate insights and contributions from other inhabitants who may be relatively verbose.

Any takers? I think this would be a valuable contribution to Wrong Planet.

Tell me what you're thinking. I am not a mind-reader.
Thank you in advance.......(oh, please please, pretty please)? Insights?

There's a recent thread, Problematic Speech, which is now in the Women's Discussion for unknown reason(s). Just an example of autistic non-verbals and their contributions.


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sinsboldly
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02 Aug 2008, 2:12 am

Hello Labpet!
I certainly hope your idea for a thread takes off! I think we need as many ways to communicate to each other as possible.

I don't think it much of a secret that I stumbled across a special type thread when I first started at WP. It was for those Asperger's Syndrome and High Functioning Autistics that were never diagnosed as a child. . or even as a young adult or ever. . at all! We all figured it out mostly on our own because medical science finally caught up to us.

Anyway. . .that special thread just had their 1000th page, Labpet!

we didn't put it anywhere special, although it went through several sections on the forum, but we kept it from slipping down the thread page, and people that knew about it, told other people and there has been a turn over in the general posters several times, too!

I wish the same success for your thread, Labpet!

Merle


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LabPet
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02 Aug 2008, 2:26 am

Thank you! There's so many specialized threads since we have specialized members. Like you stated, those of you who were later diagnosed have unique insights. Plus some positively wicked stories about their initial misdiagnosis - yikes.

The mute Auties have a special niche too. Maybe some of us can initiate a thread. Spread the (non-verbal) word!


.....then we'll start a thread for serial avatars :D Never know sinsboldy's next avatar surprise!


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sinsboldly
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02 Aug 2008, 2:35 am

LabPet wrote:
Thank you! There's so many specialized threads since we have specialized members. Like you stated, those of you who were later diagnosed have unique insights. Plus some positively wicked stories about their initial misdiagnosis - yikes.

The mute Auties have a special niche too. Maybe some of us can initiate a thread. Spread the (non-verbal) word!


.....then we'll start a thread for serial avatars :D Never know sinsboldy's next avatar surprise!


that's why I always sign my name to my posts!

Merle


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Starr
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02 Aug 2008, 4:21 am

Great idea!! I'm all for it :D

I'd love to see a forum where members don't have to rely so much on words. Some days words are difficult to find and sometimes not available at all. A forum (or part of a forum) where members can still post from inside 'AS box'...ah, that would be brilliant! Yes, you can add my support for it.

Would it have a section for members who want to 'talk' silently using other methods...(I don't know DANA)...images maybe? I started a wordless thread in in Depth after talking to another member who is sometimes without words, is this the kind of thing you envisage?

It would be great to have a dedicated area so members knew where to go to communicate in this way. :) Good luck with it!



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02 Aug 2008, 2:28 pm

I think its a great idea, not that I am silent, I do occasionally make a grunt or a snort, to communicate.
Whats a cereal avatar?
Image



sinsboldly
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02 Aug 2008, 3:50 pm

spudnik wrote:
I think its a great idea, not that I am silent, I do occasionally make a grunt or a snort, to communicate.
Whats a cereal avatar?
Image


:D :lol: :D

Merle


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LabPet
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02 Aug 2008, 5:46 pm

sinsboldly wrote:
spudnik wrote:
I think its a great idea, not that I am silent, I do occasionally make a grunt or a snort, to communicate.
Whats a cereal avatar?
Image


:D :lol: :D

Merle


Oh, now you've done it.....I'll bet this will be sinsboldy's new avatar - just wait.

Maybe the thread for those of us who are mute, and 'sympathesizers' (I use this term very loosely!) could go in the Haven? About writing/communicating: There are misnomers about those who mute or partly mute. In fact, we do write! And very well quite often. I think it's ok to mention since she's my WP friend and this isn't secret (she's written about it and made references), but Age1600 is (partly) mute. Those who know Age1600 on WP know she's very eloquent, insightful, and bright. Like me, her way of communicating is just different - not relying upon VERBAL speech.

For those of us mutes, WRITING/DRAWING, ETC is an separate function from verbal speech. So, writing is just fine! There are quite a lot on WP who experience this. Those of us in this category DO have certain special needs. If you look at the recent thread, 'Problematic Speech,' you'll understand some of our difficulties - namely selectively illiterate NTs. Other weirdnesses as well - I think we should be allowed to write.

If 'normal' humans, such as NTs, are allowed to speak, and they are, then my kind should be allowed to write/draw/express too. I feel confident in saying those with autism, whatever form, have the pervasive feeling of being 'locked inside.' This is a given. For those who do not speak this LOCKED INSIDE is amplified! Sometimes I have images/patterns/concepts/numbers in my head and I need to communicate - MENTAL SCREAM!

In fact, I sometimes can - but not always. I am a scientist, as most know here already. The scientific method is my channel - I am fluidic in science, math, and also art. I write prolifically in my science capacity as well. I am aware outsiders who read my work have no idea I'm mostly mute. Further, those who can be mute can also be very cognitively gifted. But misinterpretation is rampant. For a mute Autist we can be automaticlly considered 'slow' or worse! Neuro/psych professionals can make cumultive errors by assumption. Some, not all.

Maybe those of my kind can relate and add their special insights. In certain respects, those who are mute have a deeper autism, if you can imagine.

At my University I did a SEPARATE presentation (another read aloud). A 2-part PowerPoint presentation. The 2nd part was a Simulation/Experiment. I won't go into too much detail, but I had the audience split in half - pairs, NT1 & NT2, by designation. NT1s had an image (from Chem/Neuroscience - my field) and were not allowed to show their NT2 partner this picture. NT2s had blank paper and a box of crayons. NT1s then had to DESCRIBE, in just words, without SAYING what their image was (like 'it's a dendrite'), just using descriptives, like 'Orange horizontal criss-cross lines, etc.'

Astounding results. I gave them ~ 15 minutes. They were stunned. At the end of their 15 minutes the pairs shared each other's pictures - oh no! So for a mute mindblind (like Lab Pet here) - they UNDERSTOOD what this is! Some were really struggling with their words to 'give' this picture in their mind to their partner - it's hard. I do this with each interaction. Sadly, mutes often are ignored and excluded.

To the point: I do think in words. I think in THOUGHT, not verbal speech, so I must translate. Yes, it's exhausting. Like playing mental charades.

I hope others of my kind can share HOW and WHAT they do and what this is like. Mutism is rampant among those with autism, as we all know. We deserve to be heard too. Maybe one of our moderators would like to advise? I would appreciate their input.

Spudnik (you're so funny) - feel free to grunt. By now, after my long diatribe, your bowl of cereal is soggy.


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03 Aug 2008, 1:01 am

I think talking is over rated, people who talk to much tend not to have alot to say, I hardly ever talk, I can, but find it hard to connect with people, so I tend to nod and smile like I am listening, I think its something to do with my APD, or what I call selective hearing, people can talk directly to my face and ask me if I am listening, and I nod and say oh thats interesting. I think its why I have trouble making friends, people sort of expect a response and I miss the cue's. Its much easier for me to communicate on the computer, seems to be the best way for me to convey what I want to say.
I like soggy cereal, then I can eat it with a straw :lol:



LabPet
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03 Aug 2008, 3:29 am

Precisely. In the book by John Elder Robison, an Aspergian, Look Me In The Eye, he wrote that he would respond to inane verbal questions with a 'Woof.' I like that.....


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03 Aug 2008, 8:02 pm

Yes,am agree LabPet,
am think a part of WP would be great,NVism is a big part of the autism spectrum,somewhere like the coping with life section would be good for it,so even though it may not apply to some and wont be visited by them,the same could be said about other boards in coping with life such as love and dating,work and finding a job etc. not everyone does those things,but they can be just as big a part in life to those who have/do them.



am another non verbal WPer [differing often between full time to part time] and communicate mostly via laptop with TTS programs,makaton signing and through physical behavior when am unable to understand what want to communicate through sign or TTS as staff and family understand something isn't right, the speech am do have is echolalic.
the neuro has said that am have an abnormal right mid anterior temporal area,which is partly being blamed for the non verbalism.
am know of quite a few NVers and mutists here,including those who sign[most are makaton or asl],NVism,speech impairment and language difficulties are a lot more common than usually thought on here.


spudnik,
am agree that talking is overrated,if are unable to do it are thought to be suffering,but the only real suffering comes from others not adapting to alternative communication,and when others speak around the person,when really they can try speak to the autist instead,not getting answered in voice does not mean are not getting answered at all.


in some ways,find that being NV is good,am find that staff am hate stay away from am instead of overloading with their questions because they don't want the effort of having to communicate with an NVer.

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Precisely. In the book by John Elder Robison, an Aspergian, Look Me In The Eye, he wrote that he would respond to inane verbal questions with a 'Woof.' I like that.....

am remember he was a member on WP,dont know if still here.


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03 Aug 2008, 10:13 pm

I think it's a great idea. There should be pictures and music too. This will allow more people to exchange thoughts. Or maybe add an ESP game so they can learn how to read minds to communicate more effectively.
It's an idea, needs some shaping I know.



LabPet
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04 Aug 2008, 1:12 am

Magnus wrote:
I think it's a great idea. There should be pictures and music too. This will allow more people to exchange thoughts. Or maybe add an ESP game so they can learn how to read minds to communicate more effectively.
It's an idea, needs some shaping I know.


Great suggestion! And KingdomOfRats really illustrated the need for those NVs and our special interests and needs, which can be distinct. I think this would be doable.....also, I PM MrMark about this since I don't know how - I think he can offer advice and specifics. And other moderators here too might assist in the logistics.


....Lab Pet is lousy at ESP :D


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ViatorRose
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04 Aug 2008, 5:47 am

KingdomOfRats wrote:
if are unable to do it are thought to be suffering,but the only real suffering comes from others not adapting to alternative communication,and when others speak around the person,when really they can try speak to the autist instead,not getting answered in voice does not mean are not getting answered


I agree with this. I have on occasion, especially by teachers, had my writing implements taken away because the talker insisted upon helping me to answer 'properly'.

I fully second Lab Pet's proposal that a section is allowed for mutes, whether they be entirely mute, partially or seletively, by choice or through inability to talk, or just otherwise silent.

Whilst the level of support for this on the thread has been admirable, I would just like to make the distinction that it could be conceived of as a space for mutes to communicate, not necessarily as a place without words. Austistic mutes have experiences and face challenges that sometimes get overlooked in general discussions in this online community. It is important that there exists an area for us to exchange information and contact each other. To develop such a place but then have it misunderstood by sympathisers who believe that mutes do not deal in words would be somewhat anticlimatic. There is a staggering difference between verbal communication and writing, and this ought not get overlooked by those defining boundaries for a mute friendly environment. I am all for including drawings and other forms of self-expression, but not at the expense of the language most of us operate with.



LabPet
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04 Aug 2008, 6:20 pm

Yes ViatorRose! Those who are NVs, or partly so, like us, fully know writing is an entirely separate function than verbal speaking. I've tried to explain to this to NTs and it's futile! They just don't get it.

We do express, communicate, write, draw, EVERYTHING. I just need verbal speech, per se.

Maybe MrMark &/or another moderator can help facilitate the need for this Forum - a hallmark of autism expressed in all levels of functioning.


ViatorRose - I am so sorry you had another feel justified in talking about your faciliated speech device - that's brutal. See? This is just one issue about being NV! One who was mean to me said, about my NOT speaking, "You're not even trying to get better." She meant in regards to being autistic. SCREAM! No. I try very hard and I DO express and I DO contribute. I stand by my science and integrity. Speech is convention, yes, but still arbitrary and there are other ways. Hence, a forum for 'our kind,' like KingdomofRats stated so well.


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