Reaction to my diagnosis. Everyone is autistic!

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Charloz
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16 Sep 2014, 2:22 pm

rebbieh wrote:
When people say "everyone's a little autistic", do they actually mean that? Because if they do, that's ridiculous. And belittling. I'm not sure what I'd say if someone told me that. I know I'd get very annoyed though.


When I felt really down and sad about being 'different', I desperately did not want to be alone in all this... my mother told me I wasn't weird, I wasn't strange, nor any less then anyone else. But everyone else doesn't have a diagnosis like I do, I argued. She then went on to point at several people in our family and among her friends and neighbors that she thought displayed some autistic traits. This made me feel a lot better; I was not alone! I did not feel as if somehow this disqualified what I went through... but then again, I did not want to see it as struggle, per se. I wanted it to be a normal thing... a surprisingly common thing. At that time, it was exactly what I needed to hear.

She did not say it exactly the same, though... not "everyone is a little autistic". She just said: "everyone has something". And to an extent, that's true. We all have something.



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16 Sep 2014, 2:22 pm

rebbieh wrote:
When people say "everyone's a little autistic", do they actually mean that? Because if they do, that's ridiculous. And belittling. I'm not sure what I'd say if someone told me that. I know I'd get very annoyed though.


A lot of people are ignorant.

The term autistic is often interchanged with the word obsessed or shy by people who do not know / care what it means.



rebbieh
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16 Sep 2014, 2:34 pm

Charloz wrote:
rebbieh wrote:
When people say "everyone's a little autistic", do they actually mean that? Because if they do, that's ridiculous. And belittling. I'm not sure what I'd say if someone told me that. I know I'd get very annoyed though.


When I felt really down and sad about being 'different', I desperately did not want to be alone in all this... my mother told me I wasn't weird, I wasn't strange, nor any less then anyone else. But everyone else doesn't have a diagnosis like I do, I argued. She then went on to point at several people in our family and among her friends and neighbors that she thought displayed some autistic traits. This made me feel a lot better; I was not alone! I did not feel as if somehow this disqualified what I went through... but then again, I did not want to see it as struggle, per se. I wanted it to be a normal thing... a surprisingly common thing. At that time, it was exactly what I needed to hear.

She did not say it exactly the same, though... not "everyone is a little autistic". She just said: "everyone has something". And to an extent, that's true. We all have something.


I understand what you mean and it's good to hear that what your mother said made you feel better, but I think there's a difference between having a few traits and being autistic. Like someone wrote earlier: if everyone had autism, there would be no need for an autism diagnosis. I think saying that everyone's a bit autistic is like telling a person with an anxiety disorder that what he or she is going through is normal and therefore something he or she should be able to snap out of. Yes, everyone worries from time to time but experiencing anxiety to such a degree as people with anxiety disorders do is certainly not normal and certainly not everyone experiences. People might have certain autistic-like traits but that doesn't mean they're autistic and I think people who do say things like "everyone's a bit autistic" probably don't know that much about the condition (or whatever you want to call it).

Also, I don't think "everyone has something". I think saying that is belittling as well and I think saying that is like not acknowledging that there are people who spend their lives fighting things like mental illness etc.

I find it a bit difficult to explain what I mean but I hope you understand what I'm trying to say.



Last edited by rebbieh on 16 Sep 2014, 2:36 pm, edited 1 time in total.

skibum
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16 Sep 2014, 2:35 pm

Charloz wrote:
rebbieh wrote:
When people say "everyone's a little autistic", do they actually mean that? Because if they do, that's ridiculous. And belittling. I'm not sure what I'd say if someone told me that. I know I'd get very annoyed though.


When I felt really down and sad about being 'different', I desperately did not want to be alone in all this... my mother told me I wasn't weird, I wasn't strange, nor any less then anyone else. But everyone else doesn't have a diagnosis like I do, I argued. She then went on to point at several people in our family and among her friends and neighbors that she thought displayed some autistic traits. This made me feel a lot better; I was not alone! I did not feel as if somehow this disqualified what I went through... but then again, I did not want to see it as struggle, per se. I wanted it to be a normal thing... a surprisingly common thing. At that time, it was exactly what I needed to hear.

She did not say it exactly the same, though... not "everyone is a little autistic". She just said: "everyone has something". And to an extent, that's true. We all have something.

I can see and understand where you are coming from and I can see how your need to fit in has molded your thinking. But to say "everyone has something" is so different from "everyone is a little Autistic." Everyone has something is true. Every single person has challenges no matter who they are and no matter if they are on the Spectrum or not. It does not matter if they have a disability or not. Everyone does have challenges, everyone does have something that they are dealing with and having to overcome. But to turn that into Everyone is a little Autistic and then to admonish Autistic people into acting normal, that is wrong. That is like saying everyone has a little Down Syndrome or everyone has a little Bipolar or everyone has a little Cerebral Palsy. These would be considered idiotic statements and would only hurt the people who really have those things.


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Last edited by skibum on 16 Sep 2014, 2:37 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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16 Sep 2014, 2:37 pm

Yeah, I get that a lot. Sure makes it hard to figure out what traits are OK as-is and which ones need work and which ones need accommodation.

Everyone has autistic traits; the difference between "autistic" and "not" is number and degree.

Good luck, though, getting the masses to understand that. Smile and thank them for their support-- most of the "we're all autistic" folks mean well and are trying to demonstrate liking and support.


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rebbieh
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16 Sep 2014, 2:37 pm

skibum wrote:
But to say "everyone has something" is so different from "everyone is a little Autistic." Everyone has something is true.


I guess that depends on what you (people in general) mean by "something".



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16 Sep 2014, 2:38 pm

I mentioned to my friend that I might have AS and I told him that I'm getting tested. He says "You pay them, they are going to find something."

Fair enough. Why interview my parents and family if I am just paying them to get a label. I see why "every one is autisitic irkes you" it is a blanket statement saying that you are just making it up.


I want to beable to handle an emotion and then let it go. I want to beable to let go of a thought and be able to change and adapt when a plan does not come together. I would like to not be stubborn.


Here is my story. Girl with AS see me go into fits like she does. I get diagnosed. She still does not believe I have AS. HA! She is complaining to me that no one believes her that she has AS, and look what she does.

AS / NT every one is going to have an opinion. This is your diagnosis. What we choose to do with it is our choice. Some use it as a crutch to act out and say what ever they want. Some use it as a hurdle to over come.

My choice is to stop myself from having fits and anger out bursts because now I know why I do it now. Easier said than done.

Must learn control



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16 Sep 2014, 3:30 pm

rebbieh wrote:
skibum wrote:
But to say "everyone has something" is so different from "everyone is a little Autistic." Everyone has something is true.


I guess that depends on what you (people in general) mean by "something".
Yes, and that something can mean anything. It is very non specific. It can mean, I struggle with chronic gas, I have pimples, I have Spinal Meningitis or Spina Bifida or anything at all. It can mean I don't like my boss and I struggle with that. But Autism is much more specific. Autism, even though it is a Spectrum is actually a very specific thing. If someone were to tell you, "I have type one diabetes," I chose that because people are born with it, you would never respond to him by saying, "Everyone has a little diabetes. So put your insulin pump away and don't use it in public because it is hurting the rep of diabetes because it does not look normal." And yes, everyone has a blood glucose spike every now and then but that does not mean everyone has "a little diabetes." You either have diabetes or you don't.


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rebbieh
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16 Sep 2014, 3:43 pm

skibum wrote:
Yes, and that something can mean anything. It is very non specific. It can mean, I struggle with chronic gas, I have pimples, I have Spinal Meningitis or Spina Bifida or anything at all. It can mean I don't like my boss and I struggle with that. But Autism is much more specific. Autism, even though it is a Spectrum is actually a very specific thing. If someone were to tell you, "I have type one diabetes," I chose that because people are born with it, you would never respond to him by saying, "Everyone has a little diabetes. So put your insulin pump away and don't use it in public because it is hurting the rep of diabetes because it does not look normal." And yes, everyone has a blood glucose spike every now and then but that does not mean everyone has "a little diabetes." You either have diabetes or you don't.


Oh, I see what you mean now. You're right.

I really appreciate your posts by the way. Thought you should know.



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16 Sep 2014, 4:16 pm

rebbieh wrote:
skibum wrote:
Yes, and that something can mean anything. It is very non specific. It can mean, I struggle with chronic gas, I have pimples, I have Spinal Meningitis or Spina Bifida or anything at all. It can mean I don't like my boss and I struggle with that. But Autism is much more specific. Autism, even though it is a Spectrum is actually a very specific thing. If someone were to tell you, "I have type one diabetes," I chose that because people are born with it, you would never respond to him by saying, "Everyone has a little diabetes. So put your insulin pump away and don't use it in public because it is hurting the rep of diabetes because it does not look normal." And yes, everyone has a blood glucose spike every now and then but that does not mean everyone has "a little diabetes." You either have diabetes or you don't.


Oh, I see what you mean now. You're right.

I really appreciate your posts by the way. Thought you should know.
Thank you Rebbieh. I like yours as well. I really appreciate how you are sharing about your diagnostic experience. That is super helpful. I have been following your thread about that diligently. Thank you for writing it.


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16 Sep 2014, 4:16 pm

That diabetes analogy was excellent.



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16 Sep 2014, 4:27 pm

kdm1984 wrote:
That diabetes analogy was excellent.
thank you! :)


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16 Sep 2014, 4:27 pm

skibum wrote:
Thank you Rebbieh. I like yours as well. I really appreciate how you are sharing about your diagnostic experience. That is super helpful. I have been following your thread about that diligently. Thank you for writing it.


Thank you, that's good to hear. I'll probably keep posting in the thread from time to time (planning on posting when the psychologist and I have gone through more of the results for example).



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16 Sep 2014, 4:32 pm

rebbieh wrote:
skibum wrote:
Thank you Rebbieh. I like yours as well. I really appreciate how you are sharing about your diagnostic experience. That is super helpful. I have been following your thread about that diligently. Thank you for writing it.


Thank you, that's good to hear. I'll probably keep posting in the thread from time to time (planning on posting when the psychologist and I have gone through more of the results for example).
I would be very interested to hear how all that goes.


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16 Sep 2014, 4:44 pm

Sweetleaf wrote:
no everyone is not autistic most people are actually neurotypical, in order to be on the autism spectrum you have to fit the diagnostic criteria and have significant impairments in functioning.

This.
The prevalence of autism in the world population is estimated depending per source around 1 to 2%.


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16 Sep 2014, 5:08 pm

KingdomOfRats wrote:
people who say 'everyone is autistic' in a nice manner are probably trying to make the person feel ok and not abnormal,it tends to be said to people with very mild HFA rather than those whose autism is more recogniseable to the eye-probably because they are closest to NTs themselves and the person saying 'everyone is autistic' can relate to them quite well.


Yep, I've heard people do that for every kind of neurodivergence, except schizophrenia. Bipolar, OCD, tourettes, dyslexia, chronic depression, sexual/gender identity....I think the logic is of the sort "if you are similar enough to pass as "one of us", then we all have something similar to what you do", thus discounting someone's inner-differences and marginalizing those who are more obviously effected. I don't think it's a good thing. There's definitely a lot of stigma that needs to be changed about mental differences, but I think it's equally bad to err on the side of anything goes (everyone's personally effected), because it kind of takes away from the reality that there are real differences.