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CryingTears15
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29 Jan 2015, 11:38 am

First and foremost, I am not saying there should or should not be pride in autism, and that I am not here to debate that issue. It is a fact that many people with ASD are happy with/proud of their diagnosis.

Why do I not see this with other personality/mental disorders?

Also, I thought I made a thread like this, but it seems that I didn't, and I got no messages alerting me to a deletion of the thread.



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29 Jan 2015, 10:16 pm

Because people love tribes and seek to find people of a similar type. The reason why high functioning autism is seen as a positive is due to people not wishing to seek the negatives and seek to positives. Thus, the higher functioning people want to have a view of it being the positive to the dismay of the lowering functioning ones.

In the other mental illness there aren't such a wide spectrum and usually shown with only negative. For example, if one would hear voices it wouldn't matter how bad the voices are they will still seen as a negative as it would still be "crazy".



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29 Jan 2015, 10:19 pm

It is true that an "autistic viewpoint" has led to many innovations over the years.

Yet, one should not consider he/herself "superior" if one has autism.

There should be pride in overcoming the obstacles which autism places in one's path.

Autism should not be shame-inducing.



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29 Jan 2015, 10:39 pm

Actually, that is a very good question. No one will debate that serious neuro/psych conditions e.g., schizophrenia are debilitating. Such mental illnesses deleteriously impact lives and cause a great deal of hardship and anguish.

However, high-functioning autism (AS) can be the exception. Now, I am not stating that AS is easy (of course not!) and each AS individual expresses and copes with AS differently. AS is not a mental illness, but rather a neurological difference. Further, AS can prove to be advantageous. (Historically, we know of certain AS individual who have uniquely contributed to the fields of science/math/technology like no one else possibly could, due to their neurological 'difference').

So I guess the primary reason is that AS can be a source of inspiration. I agree to with kraftiekortie: that's no reason for any superiority......if AS is a gift, then it's a bittersweet gift.

For others who struggle with a serious mental illness - I have a lot of respect for how hard they try! My former neighbour had schizophrenia. Good guy, and he had amazing tenacity. Anyway, their mental processes can be truly incoherent and disordered. As a result, would not have a forum like ours and their illness affords them no special advantages.

For those Aspies who can find a way to channel autistic traits there are selective advantages. I know I've used strategically used my AS in certain instances.


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29 Jan 2015, 10:41 pm

Temple Grandin certainly allowed herself to use her autism to her advantage while she was inventing ways to humanely vaccinate farm animals



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30 Jan 2015, 4:31 am

I have no pride over it, that's a dangerous slippery slope. It's just part of the base framework of who I am. It's a neutral thing to me. But that's just because I have the luxury of being high functioning.

There's just as much variation in ASD populations as there is in regular populations. We are in no way intellectually superior. Honestly I kind of dislike how ASD tries to claim so many dead famous people in a gambit to make us acceptable. It seems desperate. Or how some say it's essential to math, science, or other areas. I hate this superiority complex some have just because they're bitter about being treated wrong or worse how they were raised by their parents. Crystal Children right....ASD is grossly misunderstood, we don't even know the exact genes yet. I think we're jumping the gun honestly just because it's cool to be in a social movement.



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30 Jan 2015, 9:28 am

I'm not into specific "autistic pride" or anything.

I just feel that we should acknowledge both our strengths and weaknesses...

and take advantage of our strengths, and try to minimize our weaknesses.

We have to advocate for ourselves so we could have a better chance to make a decent living. Part of that is emphasizing our usefulness in things which are pertinent (like computers).

This is what "NT's" do all the time: take advantage of their strengths, and try to minimize their weaknesses.

I'm really an pretty apolitical person.



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30 Jan 2015, 1:45 pm

I don't really believe in pride about things one did not choose/accomplish...So in that sense I have no pride in autism or any of my other mental conditions. Though I do accept that I have those conditions and that they effect my life pretty significantly and contribute to my experiences which shape my personality. I don't really think I will be rid of the co-morbids or the autism so I accept it all and work on smaller areas I'd like to improve rather than trying to become normal for instance.


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30 Jan 2015, 2:02 pm

Hearing voices might be celebrated if it helped people avoid disasters, such as bridge collapses or airplane crashes.



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30 Jan 2015, 3:09 pm

Why is there pride in autism, like being proud of autism diagnosis?
It seems ridiculous to me.
I didn't earn autism.
I am only proud of things I did that I earned through my will and effort.


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30 Jan 2015, 10:11 pm

I did get tagged with an Oppositional Defiant Disorder diagnosis as a young'un. I don't think that it should be considered a disorder, but as a 30 year old anarchist I'm proud as hell that I was recognized as such more than half my lifetime ago.


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31 Jan 2015, 9:52 am

I wouldn't say im proud of my diagnoses. It's just something I have. It will make me have challenges I will have to overcome such as living independently and social skills. But everyone has challenges right? We as humans often take for granted the things we have going for us.

Being as Aspie makes us have social skills difficulties which neurotypicals take for granted yes. But at least I have a pretty good family life. I have both of my parents and we're well off financially. Not everyone can say the same thing.



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31 Jan 2015, 11:53 am

i do not experience pride or shame (the opposite of pride). i do think i know what they are however.

pride is a feeling of bolstered self worth in the eyes of other people due to some accomplishment that others are deemed to admire.

shame is a feeling of diminished self worth in the eyes of other people due to some failure that others are deemed to scorn.

what accomplishment is there in being born with autism? what accomplishment is there in being born with any set of characteristics that you had no hand in crafting?

some people are proud of the way they look, they are proud of their intelligence, they are proud of their ability to make money. but they did not fashion those aptitudes. they were handed them by fate.

whoever is born into whatever life they are born into, it is all just the luck of the draw. no shame. no pride.



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31 Jan 2015, 12:06 pm

I know we did not choose to have autism, and I know having autism doesn't make you inherently better. But being proud of being autistic just means you accept yourself despite your differences. It's like saying, "I am me, and if you don't like it, screw you!"

I definitely don't think anyone should be ashamed of having any mental illness. But I think the reason people aren't so often proud of having other mental disorders is that these disorders aren't necessarily part of who they are. Like with depression--someone might be a pretty happy person, and then suddenly start feeling sad all the time. This probably isn't something they want. They want the depression to be treated, or at least relieved, so that they can enjoy life again. Of course, someone could be proud of having a mental illness, but this might be a reason why they wouldn't be.

But autism is part of who you are, and it's with you throughout your life. So you pretty much have no choice but to be proud of it and to enjoy any strengths it gives you.



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31 Jan 2015, 12:12 pm

TheAP wrote:
I know we did not choose to have autism, and I know having autism doesn't make you inherently better. But being proud of being autistic just means you accept yourself despite your differences. It's like saying, "I am me, and if you don't like it, screw you!"

I definitely don't think anyone should be ashamed of having any mental illness. But I think the reason people aren't so often proud of having other mental disorders is that these disorders aren't necessarily part of who they are. Like with depression--someone might be a pretty happy person, and then suddenly start feeling sad all the time. This probably isn't something they want. They want the depression to be treated, or at least relieved, so that they can enjoy life again. Of course, someone could be proud of having a mental illness, but this might be a reason why they wouldn't be.

But autism is part of who you are, and it's with you throughout your life. So you pretty much have no choice but to be proud of it and to enjoy any strengths it gives you.


I do not see how pride correlates with simply accepting ones diagnoses/condition...even though I do accept it I do not feel any pride about being in the spectrum as I had no choice. As for my depression it is so ongoing I don't have some time I remember of being happy that I want to 'go back to' so since its been around so much it does seem to be kind of a part of me, though a part I try to diminish a lot since it feels unpleasant...but I doubt it would entirely go away. I think I have the choice not to be proud of autism or any of my other diagnoses...though accepting them is a good idea.


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31 Jan 2015, 12:34 pm

TheAP wrote:
I know we did not choose to have autism, and I know having autism doesn't make you inherently better. But being proud of being autistic just means you accept yourself despite your differences. It's like saying, "I am me, and if you don't like it, screw you!"
that is your definition of proud i guess. being comfortable with how you are is not equal to pride in my mind (even though i am talking from abstraction). pride is when one puffs out their chest and feels ebullient due to great satisfaction with their efforts. i can not plug that in to being born with something i had no influence on.



TheAP wrote:
I definitely don't think anyone should be ashamed of having any mental illness. But I think the reason people aren't so often proud of having other mental disorders is that these disorders aren't necessarily part of who they are
shame is not merely the absence of pride. there is a dead zone between these two extremes that is what i believe is complacency. i do not feel any inkling toward pride or shame. i am not proud of my autism and i am not ashamed of it. i am just used to it and am comfortably numb i suppose.

TheAP wrote:
Like with depression--someone might be a pretty happy person, and then suddenly start feeling sad all the time.

i am very glad i do not suffer from psychosis. i am sure that it would be like hell to experience states that are strongly out of my control or understanding.
pride and shame however are not relevant.

TheAP wrote:
But autism is part of who you are, and it's with you throughout your life. So you pretty much have no choice but to be proud of it and to enjoy any strengths it gives you.

well i just am who i am and i do not impact on anyone else's life, so i care not about how i am.
i see life through my eyes and i am used to them and i do not feel odd at all. i know that compared to normal people i have many emotional and creative deficits, but i never knew what it felt like to be what i am not, so i do not miss it or feel out of my place.


Sweetleaf wrote:
I do not see how pride correlates with simply accepting ones diagnoses/condition...even though I do accept it I do not feel any pride about being in the spectrum as I had no choice.
As for my depression it is so ongoing I don't have some time I remember of being happy that I want to 'go back to' so since its been around so much it does seem to be kind of a part of me, though a part I try to diminish a lot since it feels unpleasant...but I doubt it would entirely go away. I think I have the choice not to be proud of autism or any of my other diagnoses...though accepting them is a good idea.


i believe you see things very clearly.