Originally Posted by kathymuggle
I will be happy (yup, happy) if they separate out autism from Aspergers. I am entirely tired of people thinking autism is just a "brain difference" and that autism simply means "quirky kids." We will never do proper research into the disorder if everyone thinks autism=Abed from Community or Sheldon from Big Bang. I feel lumping Aspergers in with autism has caused less real awareness of what autism can look like than perhaps anything else.
the problem is that this isn't just about your nephew vs. Sheldom. There are so, so, so many in-betweens. A person who seems high functioning in some areas can be quite low functioning in others. And some kids on the spectrum seem very behind at certain stages of life, but not so behind at other stages.
My DD is considered "high functioning." We don't know if she will ever live on her own, though. She can discuss the pros and cons of autism research, so she meet the author's litmus test of not counting, yet in this description of what counts:
They have no bearing whatsoever with the experiences and suffering of those who must daily face what I can only call “autism prime.” Such people exist in a swirling, nearly impenetrable world of their own punctuated by violence, lack of articulate speech, weird obsessions, incredible indifference and a hundred other heart-breaking negatives.
every item has been true about my DD except violence, and violence is less typical of girls on the spectrum than boys.
She doesn't bang her head into the wall any more, hasn't since she was about 12 or 13. She doesn't line up rocks, at least while any none family members are around. She understands what is "typical" behavior, and can pass when she wants to.
The author sees a clear line dividing who counts and who doesn't, and I don't see where you would draw the line. May be because I know too many people on the spectrum?
I think an analogy to the word "autism" could be the word "cancer." Cancer is used to refer both to certain types of small moles that can be easily removed and require no further treatment, as well as an aggressive illness that can quickly kill. Just as we have different words to specify the different types of cancer, we need words to describe the different presentations of autism.