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TheAP
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01 Feb 2015, 12:55 pm

"Pride" might not be an exact word, I don't know. But to me autism pride means you're glad to have autism because it gives you a unique perspective on the world and perhaps unique talents. Of course you can choose whether it's something you want to be "proud" of or not.



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03 Feb 2015, 12:27 am

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!"

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.


That's exactly how I feel, but replace "Autism" with "Cerebral Palsy."

The thing is that we live in a world that's very ableist - or, rather, a world that's very discriminatory towards disabled people. When a group of people is oppressed by society, they will fight back and gain recognition. This is why you have things like pride month for the LGBTQIA community. So, in that context, it makes sense to me why there would be autistic pride. Like TheAP said, it's like saying, "I like me, and screw off if you don't like it!" to a world that generally isn't accepting of autistic people.


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08 Feb 2015, 1:51 am

I think there does exist "pride" in certain other diagnoses, like bipolar and even possibly some forms of psychosis, but I agree that it's less common than among autistics. I put "pride" in quotation marks because, like "gay pride", it's not really so much being "proud" as one would of a great accomplishment, but complete self-acceptance, and believing that there are advantages to not being "normal".

I think one reason for that is, as someone mentioned, other mental conditions (I hate to call them "illnesses" because that automatically implies they're "bad") that they often occur later in life, and therefore are more separate from a person's identity. Another, much sadder reason is the way that people with other mental conditions are perceived and even feared. Autistics/aspies tend to be pitied or just thought of as weird, and sometimes admired, but it amazes me how many people are afraid of, for example, schizophrenics, and even many of those who aren't afraid seem to have little patience for people whose thought process is different from the norm.

Here is probably one of the best examples of "schizophrenia pride" I have come across:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZEglHjd_gUQ
Here you can see that in some cultures, it may have been schizophrenia that had more "pride" associated with it. But in a society where technology and technical information is really important, people on the autism spectrum at least seem to fit in (even when they really don't) so they are not shunned in the same way by the mainstream. The art world is probably another place where things like bipolar have pride associated with them--at least that's the way in which I romanticize being bipolar.



aspiesavant
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08 Feb 2015, 5:47 pm

Autism involves both strengths and weaknesses in comparison with the general (neurotypical) population.

Autistic strengths typically involve:
* a reduced need for variety
* a greater eye for detail
* a greater affinity for logic, exact sciences, engineering and programming
* a reduced sensitivity to prejudice/bias
* a decreased sensitivity to propaganda or advertising
* a greater capacity for thinking out of the box

Some of the greatest artists, scientists and engineers the world has ever known certainly or likely had Autism.

Autism is both the source of my greatest strengths and my greatest weaknesses.
As those strengths are what allows me to make a different, I'm proud to have those strengths and therefore also proud to be Autistic.

While not nearly as common as Autistic pride, there are also people who take pride in having Dyslexia, ADHD or other "disorders" commonly associated with creativity.



starkid
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08 Feb 2015, 5:54 pm

CryingTears15 wrote:
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?


Well, autism is not a personality disorder or a mental disorder, so there's no comparison on that score. In fact, autism being pervasive and neurological implies that it is who one is, while mental disorders (which are not pervasive) are more likely to be seen as something one has. I think that people are more likely to feel pride in something that they are rather than something that they only have (assuming, of course, they see it as being vs. having).

There is something called Mad Pride, however. It is not the same thing as Autistic Pride; it seems to revolve around addressing the stigma of mental illness more than actually being proud of it.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mad_Pride



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08 Feb 2015, 6:31 pm

aspiesavant wrote:
Autism involves both strengths and weaknesses in comparison with the general (neurotypical) population.

Autistic strengths typically involve:
* a reduced need for variety
* a greater eye for detail
* a greater affinity for logic, exact sciences, engineering and programming
* a reduced sensitivity to prejudice/bias
* a decreased sensitivity to propaganda or advertising
* a greater capacity for thinking out of the box

Some of the greatest artists, scientists and engineers the world has ever known certainly or likely had Autism.

Autism is both the source of my greatest strengths and my greatest weaknesses.
As those strengths are what allows me to make a different, I'm proud to have those strengths and therefore also proud to be Autistic.

While not nearly as common as Autistic pride, there are also people who take pride in having Dyslexia, ADHD or other "disorders" commonly associated with creativity.


I agree with your approach. For me, the euphemism 'if life gives you lemons, make lemonade' applies. My AS is neutral. To become aware of the attributes that my AS confers, and to appropriately direct my efforts, is the critical difference. Yes, AS has uniquely enriched my science. And I must capitalize on this rather than bring myself down by focusing on what I am not.

I've experienced loads of bullying, hate and downright discrimination. So I need to be especially grateful for those who are supportive, you know? I cannot afford to be bitter.

By analogy, imagine if a man if 6'10". This height extreme presents real-life difficulties. Doorways do not fit, cars are too cramped and clothes do not fit. Socially, it's awkward and he may experience rejection. On the other hand, this man might make a basketball superstar.


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aspiesavant
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08 Feb 2015, 6:38 pm

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starkid
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08 Feb 2015, 6:42 pm

No. Everybody is not a freaking genius. Everybody might have something that they are good at, but not everyone is a genius. And if "genius" is to have any meaning at all, yes, there must be some standard to which everyone is held.

What makes the fish stupid is not its inability to climb a tree, but basing it's self-esteem on the test, not understanding the meaning of the test, and seeking to change the test to fit a social agenda.



aspiesavant
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08 Feb 2015, 6:46 pm

starkid wrote:
No. Everybody is not a freaking genius. Everybody might have something that they are good at, but not everyone is a genius. And if "genius" is to have any meaning at all, yes, there must be some standard to which everyone is held.


I agree that the quote is an exaggeration, but it does illustrate quite well that individuals with different cognitive styles cannot all be measured by the same criteria.

Also, check out the following video, which illustrates pretty well that most people (including scientists, political leaders and religions leaders) tend to be clueless on the vast majority of issues.



starkid
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08 Feb 2015, 6:51 pm

aspiesavant wrote:
I agree that the quote is an exaggeration, but it does illustrate quite well that individuals with different cognitive styles cannot all be measured by the same criteria.


I assume you mean that they ought not be measured by the same criteria, because they obviously can be. But that depends upon the purpose of the test. If one particular cognitive style is needed to complete the job, it would be self-defeating to allow room for other cognitive styles.



aspiesavant
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08 Feb 2015, 7:08 pm

starkid wrote:
I assume you mean that they ought not be measured by the same criteria, because they obviously can be. But that depends upon the purpose of the test. If one particular cognitive style is needed to complete the job, it would be self-defeating to allow room for other cognitive styles.


That is not entirely true.

Here are two scientific articles arguing that intelligence is commonly underestimated in individuals with Autism due to the different cognitive style of Autistic individuals :
* Does WISC-IV Underestimate the Intelligence of Autistic Children?
* The level and nature of autistic intelligence



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08 Feb 2015, 7:15 pm

aspiesavant wrote:
intelligence is commonly underestimated in individuals with Autism


This statement has no objective meaning because "intelligence" has no coherent, objective meaning. The statement only has meaning in relation to the definition of "intelligence." If "intelligence" is defined as the score earned on a particular test, then the statement merely means that Autistic people score differently on different tests. If one defines "intelligence" as a Wechsler test score, then the other tests overestimate autistic intelligence. If one defines "intelligence" as some other test score, then the Wechsler underestimates autistic intelligence.



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08 Mar 2015, 9:07 pm

I've seen plenty of people express pride in other conditions.

There is LD Pride and Dyslexia Pride, there is ADHD Pride (though most of those people say ADHD doesn't exist and call it something else such as hunter temperament or being 'spirited' or something), there is Bipolar Pride (eg talking about how creative bipolar people often are), there is Schizophrenia Pride...

I don't know why Autism Pride has been most visible, but it's far from the only mental condition people have taken pride in.



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08 Mar 2015, 10:02 pm

btbnnyr wrote:
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.

^ This (for me)



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09 Mar 2015, 9:58 pm

People having pride in bi-polar disorder is a new thing to me. The more and more I see stuff like bipolar pride, depression pride, borderline pride and whatever else makes me want to hide I even have anything wrong with me and just stay a recluse, shunning all contact. Oh wait, I already do that!



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16 Mar 2015, 3:01 pm

Ciphergarm wrote:
People having pride in bi-polar disorder is a new thing to me. The more and more I see stuff like bipolar pride, depression pride, borderline pride and whatever else makes me want to hide I even have anything wrong with me and just stay a recluse, shunning all contact. Oh wait, I already do that!


Why?