Autism Months Past
16 APRIL 2017: The very first post celebrating Autism Month in which I step out of the autism closet, get more personal for one of the first times on Ye Olde Blogge, and discuss my life as an older autistic.
15 APRIL 2018: The very next year, I dive deeper into the personal by discussing my pathological demand avoidance.
3 APRIL 2019: I thought I had a really groovy insight about the role of dopamine in rewarding accurate predictions.
1 MAY 2020: It was the pandemic. We were on lockdown. I missed the month. What can I say. I’m PDA. Anywho. It was the moment when the whole world was autistic. Something to be appreciated.
9 APRIL 2021: The year there was nearly one autism post a week during Autism Month. This one I explain why we need Autism Acceptance Month.
20 APRIL 2021: One of the confusions over autism is that autistic people don’t feel emotions. Not true. We do. In fact, we feel too much. And, it creates an overwhelming mental storm when they get going. Something we like to call, a meltdown.
26 APRIL 2021: Last year police reform was all the rage, and it occurred to me that as a group, police have PDA. They ain’t gonna, no way, no how, just like someone with PDA just isn’t gonna.
Every year during Autism month, Ye Olde Blogge posts about autism. Last year, we published one post a week on autism or almost did. The final total was three during April and one in May. So, there’s that. Previous years we got one or two in during the month, usually close to the end because procrastination, which is just a fancy way of saying PDA. This post represents something of a sea change because it is going up on the first day of the month! Don’t blame me if the world is consumed by a supernova or sunspot activity crashes the Interwebs or all electronics or something. Just because this post breaks the pattern of the universe, doesn’t mean it caused all hell to break lose. Seriously, it’s a part-time blog written by a full-time citizen. It hasn’t changed the world, much, in spite of the promises WordPress made at the start.
Autism month gets called various things by various groups and organizations.
- World Autism Month from Autism Speaks;
- Autism Acceptance Month from Autism Society;
- Autism Acceptance Month from Organization for Autism Research; and
- Autism Awareness Month from The Interagency Autism Coordinating Committee of the US Dept of Health and Human Services
Like autism itself, there is no one thing here. It isn’t one size fits all. It’s neurodivergence because no two of us are exactly the same. We share enough characteristics, though, to get lumped together, and for the neuro “normal” crowd to feel compelled to ostracize us and make fun of us and get nervous when we act too differently. It’s okay. It’s human nature to be repelled by different.
Of course, one of the chiefest messages of Autism Month is that we are all neurodivergent because no two human beings work exactly the same, not when the adult human brain is made up of 100 billion neurons and 100 trillion connections between them. We couldn’t possibly be. There are too many possibilities for differences in the functioning of the brain and nervous system. Still, there are enough similarities between those of us labeled autistic to lump us all into one big group.
That is the other chiefest message of Autism Month: we should shift from awareness to acceptance. Awareness means knowing that something exists. Acceptance means not trying to change it.
Autism differs from most other mental health disorders in that it doesn’t need to be cured. It is simply a different way of interacting with the world. One that would be more functional if the world were more accepting and accommodating of the needs and viewpoints of the autistic.
So that’s what April is at Ye Olde Blogge, a chance for us to explore autism and how the world can accommodate autistic needs much like we do for the mobility impaired.
One of the things that will be featured this month are the autism heroes. Those folks who have broken ground for helping autism and autistics be better understood and more accepted: Temple Grandin, Sheldon Cooper, Dan Aykroyd, Stephen Maturin, and others. It’ll be fun.
Another thing that is planned is an in depth exploration of how an autistic world would be different from the one we’ve got because, folks, this world makes it damn hard to be autistic in. It is just too damn noisy and too damn stimulating. Knock it off.
Anywho. Leave a comment if there’s something in particular you want to see this month or an autistic tale that you want to tell. We love us some comments here at Ye Olde Blogge.
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