AS books that brainwash.. have they brainwashed you?

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Ana54
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19 Dec 2007, 1:24 pm

I've noticed that the more I read books on AS, the more AS I started to believe I was, and I started believing I had all these problems and comorbids that I in fact didn't have... the books actually temporarily brainwashed me until I came to my senses!

My mother, now she was REALLY brainwashed for a while, but she came out of it mostly, I think. :)



Last edited by Ana54 on 19 Dec 2007, 2:20 pm, edited 1 time in total.

MrMacPhisto
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19 Dec 2007, 1:30 pm

I never read books about AS for that reason. I rather find what AS is about on first hand experience and I already know the basics anyway. I get brainwashed easily by things thats why I don't read books about AS.



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19 Dec 2007, 1:39 pm

Are you talking about books that talk about AS or novels?

I haven't read a book about AS outside of some novels here and there.

I think if you read enough of any book about any 'illness' or 'disorder' you could be swayed.



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19 Dec 2007, 2:17 pm

I agree that can always be a danger. However, I not ten minutes ago dropped $50 on Amazon.com on AS-related books for us and our 3rd grader, who does not understand AS and doesn't ask many questions about it, and is beginning to show signs of sadness and low self-esteem because he feels he's constantly in trouble at school and even when he takes his meds, it's not enough to make his teachers happy, and so it must be his fault for being a "bad kid." :( I found a series of AS-related books (fiction) for kids, and ordered four. I'll read them before giving them to our son for his next birthday, but I'm hopeful he'll find the plotlines engaging and maybe he can relate to the characters, who are (from what I could tell) presented in a positive light, not as "broken" or defective kids.

Since we've sought a dx for our son, we've been sort of inexorably drawn into dx-ing ourselves. That can be tricky as well, as I'm sure everyone here who's tried this can testify. You read books to learn the symptoms and identifying markers, and wonder at each of them "Do I do that?" In my experience we generally find what we're looking for - even if we were seeking the opposite the day before. So it's a dilemma, I agree.



anbuend
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19 Dec 2007, 2:53 pm

For awhile, I thought based on Donna Williams that a person had to have to confused about and searching for their 'real self' and so forth in order to be autistic. Not that she said that, but I didn't have much experience with other books. Which is why I think the best thing if you are reading books by autistic people, is to read as wide a variety as you can manage to, because then you can see how diverse we are and are less likely to assume that you have to be exactly one way to be autistic. I've heard advice saying just not to read them, but I think either not reading them or reading a whole bunch of them is preferable to reading one or two of them.


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19 Dec 2007, 2:54 pm

Generally books about AS concentrate only on those most severe cases and those milder ones are not taken into account. 4 years ago I came across one site (the first site of this type in the Polish net) created by a woman whose son had AS and he was described this way that I thought that I only had a lot of traits but I couldn't have it myself because his problems were much more serious, whole light years far from my own.



LostInSpace
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19 Dec 2007, 3:02 pm

Ana54 wrote:
I've noticed that the more I read books on AS, the more AS I started to believe I was, and I started believing I had all these problems and comorbids that I in fact didn't have... the books actually temporarily brainwashed me until I came to my senses!

My mother, now she was REALLY brainwashed for a while, but she came out of it mostly, I think. :)


This sounds like medical students' disease. Basically, once people start to read up on all sorts of disorders, it becomes very easy to see themselves in these disorders. After all, many symptoms of most disorders are pretty generic. That's why a professional diagnosis is often important.



asplanet
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19 Dec 2007, 5:19 pm

LostInSpace wrote:
Ana54 wrote:
I've noticed that the more I read books on AS, the more AS I started to believe I was, and I started believing I had all these problems and comorbids that I in fact didn't have... the books actually temporarily brainwashed me until I came to my senses!

My mother, now she was REALLY brainwashed for a while, but she came out of it mostly, I think. :)


This sounds like medical students' disease. Basically, once people start to read up on all sorts of disorders, it becomes very easy to see themselves in these disorders. After all, many symptoms of most disorders are pretty generic. That's why a professional diagnosis is often important.


While I agree a professional diagnosis is important, the problem is finding someone who is not text book style - many professionals still have a very long way to go and still do not treat us all as individuals, just like many books...

One of the main problems still being people on the spectrum are left to try and fit the puzzle together themselves, its all still to text book and not enough information from people on the spectrum, even though thats changing.

also feel with so many different individuals working on different aspects of the spectrum, it is quite disjointed and hard for an out sided to get an overall view of the whole picture.

Thats why forums like this one are vital, so you can ask you own questions and hopefully not get a text book style answer...


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KimJ
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19 Dec 2007, 5:25 pm

My husband wouldn't read anything on autism when our son was first diagnosed and evaluated. Especially biographies or autobiographies (Temple Grandin is my hero). He didn't want to be "limited".
I find books inspiring, even if they are depressing and pessimistic. For me, know that there are others out there experiencing similar issues is comforting and inspiring.
I tend to read with a skeptic's eye and can tell when something is too biased or incomplete. So, if something is way off base then I can dismiss it or take it with a grain of salt. But it's still a good idea to fill your brain with new ideas.



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19 Dec 2007, 5:28 pm

I'm writing one with a positive swing to it. I'm so sick of reading about how bad and awful and dreaded it is. f**k off. Some of the greatest minds in history had AS; how can that be anything to be ashamed of? I'm not sick/ill/depressed/down/low-self-esteem/pschotic/mental/etc!!


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19 Dec 2007, 8:34 pm

It is hard for me to read books about children (and adults) on the severe end of the autistic spectrum. There is nothing inspirational or hopeful about them.



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19 Dec 2007, 10:08 pm

I've read plenty of books either by or about people on what most people would call the "severe end" of the spectrum (I have rather complex views about whether that even makes sense, but I can't go into them right now), and I found plenty of them to be quite positive.

(I don't look for "inspiring" that much because I'm not into disability inspiration (that's a link, since someone hasn't set the stylesheets to differentiate colors or typestyles or anything between links and the rest of the text).)

I think it depends on the viewpoint of the person writing it more than anything. Like there was one book about how a mother helped her son (in a town where there really weren't a lot of services) move out on his own and get a job, despite him being considered severely autistic. And there's always Autism and the Myth of the Person Alone, where everyone who contributed to the book besides the editor has been considered severely autistic (and also underestimated vastly intellectually) and also writes or types independently about their experiences.

I do think there's a way of writing about autistic people that, regardless of the internal traits of the autistic person, just looks depressing. I can't stand that kind of writing (and there's some of it in the one where he's moving out on his own, but there's other aspects of the book that are more positive), in part because there's something about it that doesn't see who the person really is, just describes them in terms of these few things that... ergh, just can't stand that style.


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19 Dec 2007, 10:29 pm

I've never read books about AS. Unless of course you count All Cats Have Aspergers.



Ana54
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19 Dec 2007, 10:58 pm

LeKiwi, I want to read your book! Can you post more about it?



20 Dec 2007, 3:54 am

I read books about AS and autism and I feel like I don't have it and sometimes I do depending on what I read. I do get sick and tired of the stereotypes about As when it comes to reading fiction about AS.



Tequila
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20 Dec 2007, 8:03 am

I wouldn't necessarily say 'brainwash'. You can convince yourself that you have all kinds of medical illnesses you don't have simply by reading and worrying. People with Asperger's Syndrome are particularly susceptible to this.