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chromanebula
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27 Jun 2014, 8:00 pm

1. Would revealing it help or hurt our cause?
2. How much bullying would happen to someone who did reveal the secret?
3. What would we call the revelation of our AS? "Stepping out of the crowd?"
4. Is it worth it to reveal AS?

Any thoughts?



ASPartOfMe
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27 Jun 2014, 9:11 pm

Reveling the secret is known as "disclosing" or "coming out"
People who have come out have had widely varied responses to their disclosure.
One has to make a judgement about how the person or people they want to disclose will react. One also needs to take into account the costs of hiding or "staying in the closet" as it is known.

There is another option known as "disclosing the symptoms ". Instead of saying "I have Aspergers" you can say "I better understand written instruction instead of verbal instructions" or "I am sensitive to Florescent lights"


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27 Jun 2014, 11:18 pm

chromanebula wrote:
1. Would revealing it help or hurt our cause?
2. How much bullying would happen to someone who did reveal the secret?
3. What would we call the revelation of our AS? "Stepping out of the crowd?"
4. Is it worth it to reveal AS?

Any thoughts?


Unless you are going to wear a T-shirt or other outer garment all the time that says "I have Asperger's syndrome", you are only revealing your diagnosis to selected people.

So the issue is: which people do you tell?

One issue about telling people is: what are they supposed to do with the information? I told my boss because I wanted him to give me leave to attend a psychologist. Telling him meant getting the approval to take time off. I already knew how my boss would respond to disclosure of a psychological condition, because another work colleague had been through that process already.

Another issue is: how much do they know about AS? Will they understand what you want them to understand? I lent my boss a book about managing employees with AS so that he would have a better idea what I was telling him about myself when I disclosed my diagnosis.

Generally I only tell people who have known me for years and who I trust with that sort of information about myself. And if you tell something you have AS, you will probably have to educate them about AS, as most people have only a vague idea what it is. Also, only you know what AS means to you in particular: we are not all the same just because we have AS, and the person you tell may only know a few common stereotypes.



Awiddershinlife
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01 Jul 2014, 4:13 pm

chromanebula wrote:
1. Would revealing it help or hurt our cause?
2. How much bullying would happen to someone who did reveal the secret?
3. What would we call the revelation of our AS? "Stepping out of the crowd?"
4. Is it worth it to reveal AS?

Any thoughts?


I only face difficulties in the workplace. I have 'come out' and not. Neither makes a difference. I now feel that my secrete life is not for public knowledge. I perform my job with competence, treat others with dignity, and go home at the end of the day. There, I can be my authentic self - and I love autism.

"All the world's a stage,
And all the men and women merely players." Shakespeare

"For what else is the life of [wo]man but a kind of play in which [wo]men in various costumes perform until the director motions them offstage?" Desiderius Erasmus


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03 Jul 2014, 10:23 pm

I think avoiding using the word is helpful for some.

Ive had very mixed results.

I told one person who was up to date with pysch and he just didn't get it. He understood that it existed, but couldn't understand why it was of importance to me as an identity. He seen it as me dwelling on a impolite topic, liking it to being broke. When in reality for me its a sense of pride in some way or another..

Even stranger I told his best friend as I assumed the two gossiped about me. The best friend was not told through gossip and I accidently exposed myself to him. I assumed he would be rather ignorant on the subject as he seemed very very nt. However it turned out his uncle and his two cousins were all on the spectrum.



Awiddershinlife
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03 Jul 2014, 10:29 pm

Stoek wrote:

I assumed he would be rather ignorant on the subject as he seemed very very nt. However it turned out his uncle and his two cousins were all on the spectrum.


I have grown accustomed to the very, very NT actually being spectrum. They doth protest too hard.


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03 Jul 2014, 10:33 pm

ASPartOfMe wrote:
Reveling the secret is known as "disclosing" or "coming out"
People who have come out have had widely varied responses to their disclosure.
One has to make a judgement about how the person or people they want to disclose will react. One also needs to take into account the costs of hiding or "staying in the closet" as it is known.

There is another option known as "disclosing the symptoms ". Instead of saying "I have Aspergers" you can say "I better understand written instruction instead of verbal instructions" or "I am sensitive to Florescent lights"


Yeah this is likely the best for the average person.

I would take it a little further and do the opposite. To understand a dysfunction you must first understand function. Most Nts are not aware of their involuntary actions, so explaining to them you lack something they do accidentally is crucial.

I.E. Have you every noticed that when your talking you can tell someone is paying attention to you.

My ability to do so is impaired.



Moromillas
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06 Jul 2014, 11:16 am

chromanebula wrote:
1. Would revealing it help or hurt our cause?
2. How much bullying would happen to someone who did reveal the secret?
3. What would we call the revelation of our AS? "Stepping out of the crowd?"
4. Is it worth it to reveal AS?

Any thoughts?

Well, people seem to have all sorts attached to AS.
So when you attach AS to yourself, they attach those things to you. The stigmas I'm talking about.

I'm not sure how they all rank or which ones are more prevalent. But I think "metal illness", "and no emotions/empathy" are right up there. Poor cognitive skills would be up there probably, even if the persons known you for years, it still seems to happen, they plaster all these things on you. I don't know how much it would help or hurt.

Personally, I don't think you should tell anyone, not even your wife, as they just won't be able to fully "get it", and it always just ends up causing problems. I don't think it's very honest either, just to blanketly say "Oh, it's Asperger's" or something, as it doesn't seem to do the job very accurately as a descriptor, but instead to describe what you're like as a person. Like "Oh, it's just easier for me to get overwhelmed, and need to get away from it all for a bit."



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14 Jul 2014, 4:48 pm

The reactions of people I've told have ranged everywhere from very negative to neutral. I think most people aren't going to fully understand because they are ignorant of what it really means, and because of psychologists who have been offended by someone with Asperger's and have made it their personal mission to discredit us. I really don't care anymore; I pretty much tell everyone I know. If they don't like it then fine, they can go on down the road haha.



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15 Jul 2014, 3:30 pm

Some days I am tempted to put a sticker on my van.

I actually bought two. Those oval "brag stickers" that people buy to advertise all the places they've been?? I found one that says "ASD." Also a rainbow brain.

I have yet to dig up the sack to actually go out, wash the back window, and stick them to my vehicle.

Because I'm hiding. I've been bitten by the stigma too many times and I live in terror (if sometimes only inside) of being found out. I can't (quite) bring myself to come out of the closet. I can yell under the door that there's a person in here and that closets are for brooms, but I can't quite bring myself to open the door and walk out again.

I believe that it HAS TO BE DONE. The only thing that is going to fight Adam Lanza and Eliot Rodger plastered all over the news, and all those talking heads who don't bother to differentiate between "affective empathy" and "cognitive empathy" and persist in defining empathy as "the ability to care about other people," and all the rest of it, is if people see autistic people everywhere.

There ARE autistic people everywhere. It's not going to end at 1 in 88 or 1 in 54 or whatever the hell number we're at now. It's going to end at about 1 in 37. The South Korea study is right, because it allowed the sampling of a wide band of an entire demographic without exclusions, and it was sensitive enough to pick up the kids that "pass."

And at that point, that's about 9 million Americans alone. That means that there's one in every third or fourth classroom, that if you know 100 people, statistically, you know about 3 people with some degree of autism. That, basically, you can't swing a turnip without hitting an autistic.

What's going to win us a place in society, a SAFE place, is for us to stop being mass killers that make the news and go back to being the lady that's delivered the mail for the last 15 years, and the guy that collects the garbage at 5:00 sharp every Tuesday morning, and the lady up the street who teaches English at the local college and has 27 cats, and the cashier down at the hardware store who can answer all your questions about nuts and bolts and piston rings if you don't mind that she plays with her fingers and talks to the cash register instead of you, and the affable guy who drinks coffee at the gas station on Tuesdays and Thursdays at 7:00 exactly (you know, the one who says HI! to everyone and laughs too loud).

It isn't an epidemic, it isn't anything new. We've been here all along. Some of us made it, and some of us didn't. We've been "the neighbors" since forever. We need people to remember that. And the only way that's ever going to happen is if we remind them that, well, we're the neighbors.

I've just had it blow up in my face so many times that I'm not willing to take the chance any more, at least not while my kids are too small to have their voices heard in family court. I believe that it needs to happen, and that means that I need to step up and do my part...

...but I'll thank one of you for doing it instead, because I'm too scared.


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15 Jul 2014, 9:37 pm

chromanebula wrote:
1. Would revealing it help or hurt our cause?


Well, that would depend on what your "cause" is. You're not specific enough at all to answer that.

chromanebula wrote:
2. How much bullying would happen to someone who did reveal the secret?


That would depend on how many bullies they revealed the secret to...?

chromanebula wrote:
4. Is it worth it to reveal AS?


Again, that would depend on what you want to get out of it and to whom it's revealed.


You seem to under the impression that everyone reacts to everything the same ways, has the same thoughts on AS, and has the same thoughts on what AS activists should be accomplishing.

Being a part of this community should have told you that none of those are true.

Some people consider themselves "people with Autism", others will only accept the label "Autistic person". There's not a common "cause" any more than there is a common reaction to someone with AS "coming out".

Only you know what you want, as well as the personalities of those you'd tell, so only you can answer these questions for yourself.



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17 Jul 2014, 11:59 am

I haven't revealed it yet.


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18 Jul 2014, 1:26 am

My rule of thumb is that it's not the first thing I tell people about myself, but it's not something I try and hide either. Ideally, people get to know me a bit before I mention it, so that they've formed a fairly solid idea of what I'm like without filtering it through the lens of ASD, and finding out I'm autistic is more the final piece of the puzzle than the defining one. My results have generally been positive, the only real negative I've had is occasionally having to correct a stereotype or remind someone that AS people are just as different from one another as NTs are from each other.


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Moromillas
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18 Jul 2014, 1:40 am

Dox47 wrote:
My rule of thumb is that it's not the first thing I tell people about myself, but it's not something I try and hide either. Ideally, people get to know me a bit before I mention it, so that they've formed a fairly solid idea of what I'm like without filtering it through the lens of ASD, and finding out I'm autistic is more the final piece of the puzzle than the defining one. My results have generally been positive, the only real negative I've had is occasionally having to correct a stereotype or remind someone that AS people are just as different from one another as NTs are from each other.

That's what I've generally had, at first. But, what I find out much later on, is that they still make all these negative assumptions, and will still hold dear their negative preconceptions. They just don't bring it up, and it ends up causing problems later on, especially when they're "right" about ASD, or think they know the truth. Ultimately it means having to cut them loose when you can't get through to them and want to be treated like a person.



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18 Jul 2014, 12:39 pm

I personally feel a responsibility to be open about being Autistic. I hope more and more Autistics "come out." People have no idea who we are except by the negative news stories.



the-comander
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20 Aug 2014, 12:42 am

Moromillas wrote:
Dox47 wrote:
My rule of thumb is that it's not the first thing I tell people about myself, but it's not something I try and hide either. Ideally, people get to know me a bit before I mention it, so that they've formed a fairly solid idea of what I'm like without filtering it through the lens of ASD, and finding out I'm autistic is more the final piece of the puzzle than the defining one. My results have generally been positive, the only real negative I've had is occasionally having to correct a stereotype or remind someone that AS people are just as different from one another as NTs are from each other.

That's what I've generally had, at first. But, what I find out much later on, is that they still make all these negative assumptions, and will still hold dear their negative preconceptions. They just don't bring it up, and it ends up causing problems later on, especially when they're "right" about ASD, or think they know the truth. Ultimately it means having to cut them loose when you can't get through to them and want to be treated like a person.

thats true, i do feel like if i tell people or come out all strong and proud it will just f**k up how people see me and ill be alone. my fammily and some of my very close freinds know but honestly i think that like a lot of things it comes down to negitive stereotypes in the media, if i told anyone they would think i was a retarded serial killer and id be treated like s**t, not sure if thats right, its kinda just how it is. i think if i said aspergers it would probably go better but even then people wouldent really see me as a person anymore, they would see me as a supercomputer. id be f*****g spock to them. it would pretty much destroy any chance i could have of getting laid or having freinds or maybe even more importantly, following my dream of becoming a writer. its sad but its true, i really wish that i could live in something other then shame and secracy of what i am but the truth is that theres no room in society for us if we admit to being who we are even if (like many of us are as we get older) completly normal and able to function in regular society. i think my experiance is that if i tell people what i have, even if its just a lable at this point they wont think im cool anymore. i think that some of my close freinds know and my fammily knows by default but honestly its kinda like being that gay guy in madmen or something, it definatly comes with a lot of shame. i really wish i could change that and honestly, if there was a way i could i would. i mean on some level us all being here is part of the problem, i think that if you went to a site like 4chan or youtube and said you had autism you would be harased almost automaticly and if you went to many other sites people would ask you if you were a serial killer and s**t like that, in a way a place like this is a little corner weve been forced into when i think it could be a kinda center for a bigger movement towards change.