Tag Archives: autism

Autism Awareness

A year ago I was still in the process of deciding to pursue an assessment. I don’t recall even being aware myself of various autism “awareness” activities last April or any previous April. I screen a lot of things out, but I also absorb a lot of information. I didn’t have an opinion, positive or […]

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Chance Encounters

This weekend my father-in-law was in the hospital again. His memory care facility thought he might have had a stroke. It turned out to be something else, but they kept him to observe his cardiac telemetry and have it reviewed by a cardiologist. Decades of work have trained my system so I tend to wake […]

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Fighting First Impressions

I ran across an academic paper that reviewed research into “thin slice judgments” of autistic people by neurotypical people. (It can also be downloaded and saved as a PDF for those who might prefer to do so.) For those who might not have encountered the term before, thin slice judgments are the ones we make very […]

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Autism Spectrum Disorder as a Diagnosis

There’s been a lot of discussion about whether or not those on the autism spectrum should be included in the DSM or treated as a diagnosable condition. Silent Wave has one of the best and most comprehensive posts on this topic. I’ve been mulling the topic for some time. I think I have something of […]

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The Struggle to Be

My counselor asked a question yesterday that stumped me. “If you had a magic wand, what you would want your life to be like?” Those sorts of questions have always been a challenge for me. I can imagine, even vividly imagine, all sorts of alternatives. In fact, I did that as a child, picking a […]

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Who’s “In” and Who’s “Out” in the Autistic Community?

There’s an ongoing “discussion” in the online community of autistic people about whether or not those who are only “self-diagnosed” (meaning they haven’t been able to obtain formal assessment, at least at the current point in time) should be included. It’s often expressed as a question about whether or not self-diagnosis is “valid”. Personally, I […]

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What Does It Mean to Need Support?

In my final post, at least for now, on the DSM-5 autism spectrum diagnostic criteria, I wanted to touch on the other elements outside Sections A and B as well as what it means to me to need support. First, it’s important to note that Section A and B criteria can be manifested currently or […]

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Overwhelming Senses

The final criterion of Section B of the DSM V involves sensory issues. Hyper- or hypo-reactivity to sensory input or unusual interest in sensory aspects of the environment. These vary a lot from individual to individual, but I haven’t run across anyone autistic yet who doesn’t struggle with sensory input to some degree. Personally, I […]

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What makes an interest “special”?

The third Section B criterion for autism spectrum disorder in DSM V reads as follows. Highly restricted, fixated interests that are abnormal in intensity or focus. These are commonly referred to as “special interests“, which begs the question: What makes them so special? The parenthetical describes them as “excessively circumscribed or perseverative” or as a […]

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Mimicking Flexibility

This post continues my reflections on the diagnostic criteria for autism spectrum disorder from DSM V and how they relate to my own life. The second criterion in section B describes a need for routine and sameness. “Insistence on sameness, excessive adherence to routines, or ritualized patterns of verbal or nonverbal behavior.“ This criterion was […]

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