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I posted this in special needs as well, but I feel it should be brought to light here. C&P of my SN post:<br><br>
--------------------------------<br><br><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/gloomy.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Gloomy">: <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/gloomy.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Gloomy">: The backlash cometh. This is the second highly publicized school attack by a diagnosed autistic person. I have so many mixed emotions running through me right now. I am *this close* to pulling ds out of public school after preschool and homeschooling.<br><br>
Article:<br><a href="http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/topstories/tm_headline=we-are-glad-he-is-dead-by-cho-s-family--&method=full&objectid=18931479&siteid=89520-name_page.html" target="_blank">http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/topstor...name_page.html</a><br><br><div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
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<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">Yang-Sun revealed the eight-year-old was diagnosed as autistic soon after his family emigrated to the US.<br><br>
She said: "He was very quiet and only followed his mother and father around and when others called his name he just answered yes or no but never showed any feelings or motions.<br><br>
"We started to worry that he was autistic - that was the big concern of his mother. He was even a loner as a child.<br><br>
"Soon after they got to America his mother was so worried about his inability to talk she took him to hospital and he was diagnosed as autistic." <snip><br><br>
"His parents worked and did not have time to look after his condition and didn't give him special treatment.<br><br>
"They had no time or money to look after his special problem even though they knew he was autistic."</td>
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It's a prime example, IMO, of how we need to help our kids, help them to be able to cope in the NT world (not "pass" for NT, but <i>cope</i>), help them to be able to cope with life's stress and sensory overload. We also need to help FAMILIES more.<br><br>
I am just so sad about all of this.<br><br>
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No, his autism doesn't excuse his actions. Not at all. It just scares the ever loving crap out of me on so many different levels...what if his family had been given help to help him? What if he hadn't fallen through the cracks? What if he'd been taught to cope with his world, to channel his frustrations and anger in a healthy way?
 

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Thanks for posting that.<br><br>
I wondered if this was the case too because his grandmother said something like, "He always, even as a little boy - <i><b>hated</b></i> talking to people."<br><br>
Wow, knowing your child is sick and not doing anything about it (or being able to do anything about it.) That's beyond awful.
 

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<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/greensad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="greensad"> it just keeps getting more sad. i'm at a loss for words.
 

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That makes sence with all the statements of antisocial behavior. Not making direct eye contact etc.<br>
I am not taking up for what he did but the autism rate in this country is skyrocketing All the kids need help <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/gloomy.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Gloomy">:
 

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Discussion Starter #6
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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>Arduinna</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/7905683"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">Nt?</div>
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Sorry, that's autism-speak coming out. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/bag.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Bag">: NT = neurotypical = somebody who has "typical" thought processes, etc.. I.e., someone not autistic or mentally delayed or challenged in any sense of the word.
 

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Would you say though, that his being autistic is not what made him capable of such an extreme level of violence, and that perhaps pointing to his autism is an unfair stereotyping of autistic people, and is ignoring other issues about him that may have contributed more? Since I am not very familiar with autism, I would love to hear what those of you who are have to say.
 

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People who are diagnosed with autism are not all the same but they do all *think* differently, process differently and are extremely sensitive to different things and all to different degrees (hence the spectrum). I think that what Finch is alluding to (correct me if I'm wrong here), that he was diagnosed with autism and was not treated for it had everything to do with the tradegy that occurred because he was not taught how to <i>cope</i> with the NT world. I think that with, given the current diagnostic rates, this tragedy should hopefully shed some light on what autism is, clear up misconceptions on what it is and what it isn't, and perhaps get people to seek help and treatments for their chldren who exhibit the extreme anti-social behaviours that this young man showed. I hope that this brings about a meaningful dialogue about autism in this country and the treatments and therapies that help but aren't affordable or readily available to so many people.<br>
My heart goes out to all who have been affected by this <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hug">
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>gool0005</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/7906275"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">People who are diagnosed with autism are not all the same but they do all *think* differently, process differently and are extremely sensitive to different things and all to different degrees (hence the spectrum). I think that what Finch is alluding to (correct me if I'm wrong here), that he was diagnosed with autism and was not treated for it had everything to do with the tradegy that occurred because he was not taught how to <i>cope</i> with the NT world. I think that with, given the current diagnostic rates, this tragedy should hopefully shed some light on what autism is, clear up misconceptions on what it is and what it isn't, and perhaps get people to seek help and treatments for their chldren who exhibit the extreme anti-social behaviours that this young man showed. I hope that this brings about a meaningful dialogue about autism in this country and the treatments and therapies that help but aren't affordable or readily available to so many people.<br>
My heart goes out to all who have been affected by this <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hug"></div>
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What she said.<br><br>
My son is only 3, so we have years to go yet down this autism journey, but there are many mothers of older autistic children who have expressed near panic at the lack of services for their children. Autistic children need at the very least early intervention (which this young man did not get), and at best they need skills to help them transition to adulthood, to help them navigate around this often confusing world. Had those things been in place for this young man, I wonder, would this tragedy have taken place?
 

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<a href="http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20070420/ap_on_re_us/virginia_tech_shooting" target="_blank">http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20070420/..._tech_shooting</a><br><br>
His sister spoke to AP through a lawyer -- I think they really just didn't know what was wrong with him or how bad things were. It must be so hard for them.
 

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I'm too lazy to compose another response, so I'll just copy the two posts I wrote on this subject on the other VT shooter thread. (I <i>think</i> that's allowed).<br><br><br><div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>Brigianna</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/7903369"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">There is no correlation between ASCs and inability to separate fantasy from reality.<br><br>
ETA: From a purely selfish standpoint I really hope he wasn't autistic. We get blamed for enough stuff already.<br><br><br><br>
I've more-or-less tried to avoid coverage of this issue, partly because it's depressing, partly because I don't think so much should be make public knowledge, and partly because I don't see what good is done by speculating about this terrorist's (and I do believe him to be a terrorist) motives. I don't know whether he was bullied or not. He probably was. That is of course no excuse. I don't know about his mental state, but then I have a radically different view of mental illness than most of society. Discussions of gun control and crime prevention are interesting and necessary, but in the end, this tragedy happened because an individual chose to end the lives of his fellow humans. Beyond that, I don't know that we can, or should, ever know.</div>
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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>Brigianna</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/7907289"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">Autism is not a mental illness even according to the medical community. It is a developmental disability.<br><br>
Most autistics who would be labeled "high-functioning" (able to communicate orally and live without assistance) who are over age 25 or so did not grow up being "treated" for autism. Sometimes they were diagnosed with and "treated" for other things, but it was much harder to get an autism diagnosis then (unlike today, when any kid who talks later than his peers and is less sociable than his teachers are comfortable with is proclaimed to be "on the spectrum"). There are 35+ year old undiagnosed Asperger autistics (autistics who were not speech delayed as children) who would laugh in your face if you told them their natural way of being was a form of autism or was any kind of disability.<br><br>
And that's not even going into issues of autism "treatment," its ethics or its efficacy. I don't see how any autism "treatment" could possibly address whatever prompted this man to do what he did.<br><br>
I would--and this is without meaning any insult--encourage anyone who is thinking about this issue to visit the neurodiversity.com site linked in my sig and learn something about autism before forming any opinions about a possible connection between autism and mass murder.<br><br>
Also, not speaking to other students is within the range of normal for autistics. When I was in school, including college, I rarely spoke to anyone else. Fortunately for me, I was just considered weird, not a potential killer.</div>
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<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">
<div>Originally Posted by <strong>Finch</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/7905994"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">Sorry, that's autism-speak coming out. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/bag.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Bag">: NT = neurotypical = somebody who has "typical" thought processes, etc.. I.e., someone not autistic or mentally delayed or challenged in any sense of the word.</div>
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ok thanks
 

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<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">Most autistics who would be labeled "high-functioning" (able to communicate orally and live without assistance) who are over age 25 or so did not grow up being "treated" for autism. Sometimes they were diagnosed with and "treated" for other things, but it was much harder to get an autism diagnosis then (unlike today, when any kid who talks later than his peers and is less sociable than his teachers are comfortable with is proclaimed to be "on the spectrum"). There are 35+ year old undiagnosed Asperger autistics (autistics who were not speech delayed as children) who would laugh in your face if you told them their natural way of being was a form of autism or was any kind of disability.</td>
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This was my thought. It looks like he slipped through the cracks. He kept getting sent to councelling, but how much follow-through was there? How much behavior therapy did he get? It makes me really sad. I am sad for his family and sad for him and sad for all the people who paid the price for his being neglected.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>Lila</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/7909329"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">This was my thought. It looks like he slipped through the cracks. He kept getting sent to councelling, but how much follow-through was there? How much behavior therapy did he get? It makes me really sad. I am sad for his family and sad for him and sad for all the people who paid the price for his being neglected.</div>
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I'm sorry if I'm misinterpreting your post, but if I'm correctly interpreting it, that's actually the opposite of what I meant. I wasn't talking about people "slipping through the cracks." I was talking about the fact that there are many, many autistic adults who are "untreated," including many who don't know that they're autistic, and many (like myself) who firmly believe that no "treatment" is necessary. To attribute this act of terrorism to the perpetrator's "untreated" autism makes about as much sense as attributing a crime to someone's "untreated" dyslexia or "untreated" shortness. There is no link between autism ("untreated" or otherwise) and mass murder. It is a completely irrelevant issue.
 

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No, there isn't a link between autism and mass murder. Brigianna, what I'm talking about isn't treatment in the curebie sense. You know from my posts in SN I don't think like that about autism. What I mean is, had this kid had SOME KIND of intervention, i.e., special help in school like OT or ST or social skills training, or just even a special ed teacher who <i>understood</i> and was kind to him, maybe his rage wouldn't have reached the level it did...maybe he wouldn't have been bullied to the extent he was. I'm saying that if he'd gotten "treatment" in the form of teaching him healthy coping mechanisms for dealing with the NT world, instead of just building and building and building frustration and bottling it up, maybe, just maybe, he wouldn't have gone on a rage-based rampage. Many autistic students are mercilessly bullied. IF they are diagnosed and are receiving therapies through school or elsewhere, however, lots of times that bullying can be decreased or eliminated. I don't think he needed to be "cured," you know I don't believe in that cure crap. I do believe that he needed SOMEONE who acknowledged and understood his autism so they could gently help and guide him so that he wasn't so knocked around all the time.
 

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I was really hoping for no autism ties but based on how he was described... <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/greensad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="greensad">
 

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<div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>Finch</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/7909615"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">No, there isn't a link between autism and mass murder. Brigianna, what I'm talking about isn't treatment in the curebie sense. You know from my posts in SN I don't think like that about autism. What I mean is, had this kid had SOME KIND of intervention, i.e., special help in school like OT or ST or social skills training, or just even a special ed teacher who <i>understood</i> and was kind to him, maybe his rage wouldn't have reached the level it did...maybe he wouldn't have been bullied to the extent he was. I'm saying that if he'd gotten "treatment" in the form of teaching him healthy coping mechanisms for dealing with the NT world, instead of just building and building and building frustration and bottling it up, maybe, just maybe, he wouldn't have gone on a rage-based rampage. Many autistic students are mercilessly bullied. IF they are diagnosed and are receiving therapies through school or elsewhere, however, lots of times that bullying can be decreased or eliminated. I don't think he needed to be "cured," you know I don't believe in that cure crap. I do believe that he needed SOMEONE who acknowledged and understood his autism so they could gently help and guide him so that he wasn't so knocked around all the time.</div>
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Yes, I know you don't personally feel that way, but that is the way it's being portrayed in the mainstream media. Autistics should have access to help with dealing with the world, but I think the world should also be more tolerant of autistics and other "different" people. And this case is not contributing to that. It really scares me. Now every time someone stands up to talk about accommodation or neurodiversity or whatever, "Va Tech shooter" will be in people's minds...
 

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You know, I generally agree with you on this issue, but I think there's a very dangerous connection being made here...<br><br><div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
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<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">
<div>Originally Posted by <strong>Finch</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/7909615"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">No, there isn't a link between autism and mass murder. Brigianna, what I'm talking about isn't treatment in the curebie sense....What I mean is, had this kid had SOME KIND of intervention, i.e., special help in school like OT or ST or social skills training, or just even a special ed teacher who <i>understood</i> and was kind to him, maybe his rage wouldn't have reached the level it did...maybe he wouldn't have been bullied to the extent he was. I'm saying that if he'd gotten "treatment" in the form of teaching him healthy coping mechanisms for dealing with the NT world, instead of just building and building and building frustration and bottling it up, maybe, just maybe, he wouldn't have gone on a rage-based rampage. Many autistic students are mercilessly bullied. IF they are diagnosed and are receiving therapies through school or elsewhere, however, lots of times that bullying can be decreased or eliminated. I don't think he needed to be "cured," you know I don't believe in that cure crap. I do believe that he needed SOMEONE who acknowledged and understood his autism so they could gently help and guide him so that he wasn't so knocked around all the time.</div>
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Ok, so yeah. Here are my two issues:<br><br>
1) I don't see the "lack of treatment" (by which it seems you mean lack of therapies, which I see as kind of different and am glad you draw the distinction) as neccessarily engendering rage. The individual person, NT or autistic, is going to react with "rage"--or not--based on their personality. Autism spectrum conditions are not psychotic rage disorders. The tantrums a two-year-old autistic throws do not indicate a potential for murder any more than the tantrums my two-year-old NT threw portended that she would become a Black Widow Killer or something.<br><br>
2) YES, autistics are horribly bullied in school. The scars from this treatment often never go away. People who have that kind of trauma, FOR WHATEVER REASON, are more likely to have rage issues as they get older. But why is the solution to this to pathologize autism? Why not pathologize the lack of empathy and inability to control oneself that seem to lie at the heart of BULLYING? Why not put the kids who torture their autistic schoolmates through years of "treatments" for their behavior? I'm being serious here.<br><br>
3) (I thought of another reason while I was typing) Blaming a lack of "treatment" or "resources" for a horrible situation like this smacks of the sort of logic used when a caregiver (such as the parent of an autistic child)murders the person in their care (such as the child). Often this murder is described as a "reaction" to a "lack of services." This is no justification at all. IF the young man responsible for the killings at VT was autistic, whether or not he got "services" does not justify his behavior in the slightest! Murder is murder! It's murder when a mother kills her autistic child and then claims it was because she couldn't get respite care, and it's murder when a (possibly) autistic boy decides it's a good idea to kill a roomful of his classmates. "Services" or lack thereof are no excuse here, and shouldn't be allowed to enter the debate, BECAUSE...<br><br>
4) There's a really insidious slippery-slope argument here in which I can see autistics being forced to accept services they don't need or want because WITHOUT the SERVICES... they might KILL. Sort of a guilty-until-proven-innocent thing. What if you don't <i>want</i> behavioral therapy for your child? What if you think brushing is a particularly sick form of sensory torture (it is for some kids, although it works for some)? Should you HAVE to do these things because lack of "services" may keep your child from being able to "integrate" enough to ... not murder people?<br><br>
I don't know. Maybe I'm incoherent. I'll come up with something far more intelligent on this topic for the blog sometimes soon.
 

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<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">Originally Posted by Brigianna<br>
There is no correlation between ASCs and inability to separate fantasy from reality.</td>
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I didn't see this in the other thread.... really? I swear I've read studies on this before, and WOW my anecdotal evidence sure points to it...<br><br>
I work closely with 21 children. 11 have Asperger's. 5 of the children with Asperger's have pretty extreme fantasy/reality misunderstandings, none of the NT children do. (these are 7-8 year olds)<br><br>
maybe we mean different things by this...???<br><br>
As examples, one student I know doesn't know the difference between a movie character and a real person. He knows that a cartoon is not a real person, but he thinks that Rocky is just as much a real person as he is. He doesn't understand that he is an actor. He also doesn't know that video games are not ACTUALLY happening.<br><br>
Another child thinks he can turn into an alien by pressing a button on his wrist (yes, I know the TV reference)... he really, actually thinks that this year he and his family are aliens, while last year he thought that he and his family were each superheros.<br><br>
Another student has a great way of putting it, it really makes me happy to hear... when someone told her that she doesn't believe in fairies, she said "they're real to me." When another girl was crying about monsters, and I said monsters weren't real, this amazing little girl pulled me aside and said "Ms _____, maybe you shouldn't say that to her. They are real to her."<br><br>
I have a ton more examples, though I don't think the last one is quite the same... but I have seen this same thing in a lot of kids on the spectrum, and I thought for sure I had learned that also in grad school.<br><br>
NOT that I think this is relevant to the discussion... he could have reality/fantasy issues regardless of whether he was on the spectrum or not, and reality/fantasy issues are not typically violence related, IME.
 
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