Parents in ‘gifted’ communities tell each other to get their kids tested young…
…so that they’ll still be identified as gifted before their IQ drops below the threshold for ‘giftedness’.
…and yet people also simultaneously find it so hard to believe that by the age of 15, the normal age that that happens and is known to happen, I no longer had an IQ in the ‘gifted’ range.
I mean yeah it’s somewhat weird it dropped as low as it did by 22, but that’s not that weird for autistic kids who were identified as ‘gifted’. I know tons of autistic people who had ‘gifted’ IQs as kids and average or below IQs as adults. Just like I know tons of autistic people who had average or below IQs as kids and ‘gifted’ IQs as adults. And tons of autistic people whose IQ varied a great deal back and forth in the same year or even in the same week.
(Please don’t tell me what my ‘real IQ’ is, or reassure me that I’m ‘still gifted’, there’s no such thing as a ‘real IQ’ that somehow lives inside a person as an attribute of a person, and I’m highly uncomfortable with the concept of giftedness as applied to IQ. I always have to put this warning on my posts or I get bombarded with messages that tear me up inside with their prejudice.)
apologetic notes for the socially inept
Sometimes I want to apologize for not being able to talk to people like a normal human being. So I made these.
I wish I could send one of these to everyone I know, to apologise for babbling incessantly about absolutely nothing, just because I’m lonely…
This is really relevant today. I had an interaction go wrong yesterday and I’m trying not to become obsessed with what went wrong.
in the movie My Name Is Khan, Rizwan-the main character didnt like the colour yellow so much he got frustrated when he saw it (from the few parts i saw ) has anyone heard of autistics balking at the sight of colours? ive never experienced this as far as I can tell (and i…
I had a real problem with yellow as a kid, it hurt my eyes. It’s not as bad now but some people have problems with specific colors into adulthood. I still have some problems with it when it covers a huge area, but not in small amounts. I actually like it in small amounts. But problems with specific colors is quite common.
Can anyone help Katerina?
I don’t have the ability to help other than using the fact that I have a lot of followers here and am well-known in certain segments of the Internet. So if anyone at all is able to help a multiply disabled woman who’s had her services canceled and further services denied and abused through neglect and people have lied to Adult Protective Services and it’s a mess.
If anyone can help please go here:
TW, and NSFW, both apply to her post (at least the NSFW part applies to the naked YouTube video where she documents the damage to her body, some of which reminds me of the awful rashes I used to get before I got my breast reduction, so I can attest that those things are painful without treatment and sometimes even with it).
I used to talk to her years ago, she has a lot of similar issues to mine, and nobody deserves this but it hits harder when you know the person and please if anyone can help, please do.
Oh and sorry for spelling your name wrong but I can’t figure out the right spelling due to trying to do a lot of things at once right this minute. Very sorry.
An anti-skill that interferes with friendship
This post is a further response to an ask by someone who identifies as aspie and is struggling to making friends.
Yesterday, I addressed the burden of stigma we face, and how it can make it hard to find people who will treat us well enough to be good friends. Today, I want to start talking about other problems autistic people often have making friends. (Usual standard caveat - if you relate to any of this, it’s fine to use these concepts whether or not you are autistic. Don’t worry about appropriation.)
There are a lot of social problems that autistic people often have beyond other people’s anti-autistic hate. Some of these things are inherently difficult for some of us, and some of them have to do with how we are often taught counterproductive coping strategies.
For instance, a lot of autistic people find it difficult to judge other people’s boundaries and level of interest in interacting (and that’s partly because, as kids, we’re taught that we have to interact with other kids and see them as friends regardless of what we or they want).
Here’s an example of how an autistic impairment and stigma combine to create a relationship problem for some people:
- One thing that often gets autistic people classified as aspie is having more receptive language problems than expressive language problems
- People with really good, or good-seeming, expressive language can often cover for the fact that they don’t understand much of what’s going on
- This allows them, especially as kids, to pass as just socially awkward, or to pass as being too gifted to get along with other kids, or any number of variants on that theme
- There is often very, very intense pressure on autistic people classified as aspie to cover impairment at all costs and to appear as normal as possible
- This makes receptive language problems even worse, because it prevents them from getting good feedback on whether they’re understanding anything
- And sometimes, aspie spaces can make this even worse. Sometimes aspie-oriented communities are centered around helping people to deny that they have language problems, and to say that the rest of the world just communicates wrong
- (It’s true that the rest of the world needs to work on accommodating people with communication disabilities more - but autistic folks need to acknowledge that they *have* communication disabilities, and a lot of aspie-identified folks like to deny this)
- Covering up receptive language problems can make friendship really difficult. Friends need to be able to understand each other
- Which means friends need to be able to admit it and fix it when they *don’t* understand each other
If this sounds like you, it’s likely that getting better at friendship will involve looking more autistic.
More on social problems autistic people often struggle with tomorrow.
Trying to learn to purl. Chaos is ensuing between these needles, you don’t even want to know how my fabric looks as a whole.
However. Muscle memory is amazing. Years and years ago I learned to knit, and I was really no good at it. It was very hard, every stitch was difficult, and I screwed up so many times that I basically tied my yarn into knots that couldn’t be dealt with, more often than I did anything useful with it.
Leave it alone for a few years and the knit stitch is so easy I don’t even have to think about it.
That’s generally how this kind of skills work for me:
1. Learn skill, do really badly at it, but practice, and stay bad at it, and make no progress.
2. Get frustrated and stop.
3. Wait anywhere from 2-15 years.
4. Come back to it.
5. Be really good at it, or else really good compared to before.
(I’m pretty sure things like this are where a lot of ‘savant skills out of nowhere’ come from, and I understand why a lot of research is showing that autistic learning styles can be understood by looking at savant learning styles, even in non-savant autistic people. It’s basically the same thing, it’s just a matter of degree.)
Body as a Second Language: Navigating Queer Girl Culture on the Autism Spectrum
"For me, reading and speaking body language is like communicating in any foreign language â I concentrate hard, stumble, and make embarrassing errors. Turns out other queer autistic people have thi…
So my theory as to why I’ve been in relationships with more man folks than lady folks is that cishet men are encouraged to be less subtle and more direct in their advances- where as ladies, particularly those who are into ladies, are encouraged to be more subtle… And I therefore end up missing signals more easily. So though I generally like feminine folks of any gender more, I end up seeing more guys. :-/
Yep I’ve been in 1.25 relationships with guys even though I’m not even into guys. Meanwhile I’ve been in only one relationship with a woman, even though women and nonbinary people are my preferred genders.
The original article is really interesting.
One time I went into a gay bar. It was loud and noisy and I hate being around drunk people. Then a woman kept making steady eye contact with me…. And I jumped under the table.
Another time, a lesbian kept telling me I was cute, and she gave me her phone number. I never called it.
In a mental institution as teens, there was this girl who followed me around and did everything I did and was really focused on me. But only ten years later did I figure out why she kept telling me that she was bisexual… She had a crush on me.
I’m not incapable of understanding body language. In fact I can be rather good at it. But the body language I read is not the body language most people read, and there are large gaps in my comprehension.
But I know that differences in reading body language have played into my relationships and lack thereof.
People with autism do not lie.
People with autism do not judge.
People with autism do not play mind games.
People with autism do not hate.
Maybe people can learn something from them.
All of these are dangerous misconceptions that hurt autistic people.
We aren’t mystical innocents. We’re people.
We do all of those things.
The misconception leads in two dangerous directions:
1. “You’re autistic so you can’t ever do those things.” / “The more autistic you are the less you’ll do those things.”
2. “You do those things so you’re not autistic.” / “The more you do those things the less autistic you are.”
I know someone autistic who deliberately manipulates both sets at once? (How? She claims to be extremely autistic, and then convinces others that various people are not autistic by proving they have ever done those things. Some autistic people are some of the first people to get convinced that other people are not autistic this way, because they have absorbed these stereotypes. Then they shun other autistic people from the autistic community if they are proven to have done these things ever in their lives. All thereby making the autistic person in question very happy because she is sadistic and likes to see communities torn apart. No, being autistic doesn’t mean she’s nice, but she manipulates the idea that she’s innocent for all she’s worth. I’ve even seen her talk about the way she manipulates the innocent disabled person stereotype to her benefit when hurting people, so I know it’s absolutely deliberate.)
The uses of this stereotype are not always so cold and calculated, but they are always, always damaging and destructive.
(Source: r-double0-d, via some-of-the-patterns)
Does anyone know of anything actually worthwhile to read about autism-related motion disorders?
I’m really ducking sick of not understanding basic things about how my body works.
There is a really long book by Anne Donnellan and Martha Leary that came out recently. Relatively recently anyway. Autism: Sensory-Movement Differences and Diversity. There’s also many scholarly articles on autistic catatonia although they’re not always useful on a practical level.
(Source: some-of-the-patterns, via clatterbane)
What Kanner’s autism means.
I wrote this before as a reply, but I’m re-posting it to put it in the tags:
In fact so many of Kanner’s original patients went to college that he had to write an entire paper on it, IIRC.
Also, for those confused about what Kanner’s autism actually means, please read this:
Often what he observed about autistic people directly contradicted what he said and concluded about autistic people’s capabilities. The one I remember the most clearly was the way he puzzled over why a nonverbal autistic girl didn’t hear instructions yet followed them perfectly, when what he really meant was that she didn’t respond in ways that most people would to show they’d heard the instructions, but she followed them quite well.
So don’t trust the conclusions he reaches about autistic people. Go for his actual concrete descriptions of our behavior, and you’ll get a much clearer view of what the people he studied were really like. For instance, many of them were clearly (by their actions) engaging with people socially, yet he wrote one of the criteria for autism is that autistic people don’t do that. And most of them had speech (only one or two of his first patients didn’t), but he considered lack of speech an important part of autism.
Kanner autism used to roughly mean ‘high-functioning’ by the way. It was only later that most ‘low functioning’ people were even considered to be autistic, rather than to have some other childhood psychosis (there were tons of different childhood psychosis definitions back then, not just autism — which was considered a form of childhood psychosis by many psychiatrists… psychosis meant something different back then than now, apparently), or to have an intellectual disability. Many times, people considered low-functioning were simply diagnosed schizophrenic, where people considered high-functioning were considered to have Kanner’s. Many times, a normal to high IQ was necessary for a diagnosis of Kanner’s. There were no formal criteria so people changed the definitions over, and over, and over again and everyone used the words differently from each other.
It’s absolutely not true that autistic people were all ‘low functioning’ people until recently. What actually happened was that autistic people were nearly all ‘high functioning’ people in the beginning and for many years, and then ‘low functioning’ people were gradually added to the definition of autism, and then became the stereotype of autistic people. And only then did ‘high functioning’ people get considered not to be autistic, and have to be re-added to the definition later. And that’s only roughly the story.
(I don’t believe in HFA and LFA, these are other people’s categories, not mine.) Also, ‘regressive’ autistic people were more likely to, in the seventies, be called childhood schizophrenic.
Additionally, none of these changes happened quickly and instantly. There are still people who believe that autism is a form of childhood schizophrenia and that it’s caused by bad parenting. There are still people who believe that there’s no such thing as an autistic person who can pass (or be passed) for normal, even though they’ve existed since the beginning of the definition of autism. There are still people who think Kanner means high functioning, and people who think Kanner means low functioning as well, and every possible way autism has been ever described, still has people who believe it’s true, no matter what time period it originated. People who think that once a definition is added to the DSM, everyone instantly understands, don’t understand how medicine or psychiatry work in practice.
Even most autism ‘experts’ are extremely clumsy about the history of autism and how it’s been defined and diagnosed over the years. I only know these things because I’ve gone back and read the original sources from the forties, fifties, sixties, seventies, eighties, and nineties. You can do that in a university library fairly easily if you have the time and resources.