What is changing today?
Changes are coming with science’s new understanding of autism.
No longer is autism simply about how individuals behave. No longer do all doctors and professionals believe autism is something that can be “trained” out of us!
Science and recent studies have continued to describe not only behavioral traits, but scope of intelligence, ability to process sensory information, physical traits, genetic backgrounds and specifics, gait, and science finally hit the jackpot when studies and scientists began to see that autism can be described as being a condition of uneven neurological development. Autism will be different for every single individual because each of our neurologies developed or failed to develop in different ways. Think about it! No longer will autism studies be based on finding key behaviors ( all autistic people use self stimulating behavior) ( all autistics struggle to communicate) “all autistic people think in pictures” No more assigning traits to all autistic individuals or looking for shared characteristics outside of unusual neurological development.
No longer is autism a mental illness which causes us to behave in odd or difficult ways.
Autism is now seen first as something we are born with, and not due to the way our parents treated us, not due to our traumas or our early childhood experiences.
The day is coming soon when those learning to diagnose autism will look for neurological signs… they will seek out sensory processing differences and difficulties and take a second look at those of us who continually or consistently out perform others in certain areas. There will be neurological tests for perception, sensitivities, sensory testing of all sorts (because all senses are based in our neurology).
Coming soon will be the removal of assigning of certain behavioral traits to all autistic people.
“Autistic people don’t look you in the eye” “autistic people can’t do things like have relationships, have friends, marry or raise a family” “autistic people all do this, or don’t do that” as signs of autism will be discarded in favor of testing sensory processing. Scientists or diagnosing professionals will be looking for signs of neurological struggles including any neurological conditions now recognized, such as epilepsy, dyspraxia, ataxia, struggles with balance and coordination, struggles with any sensory input and unusual presentation of sensitivity to sensory input or lack of sensitivity. We already know this varies greatly with each autistic individual.
Individuals will be assessed on their neurology and not their troublesome behavior.
I have recently learned that a few teaching schools (universities, colleges) around the USA have begun to have classes about adult autism instead of devoting only a page or two in a general medical text in specific studies.
I see this as signs of good things happening for many autistic older adults.
These are just stirrings and first movement… something I had never thought I would see in the very limited years left of my lifetime.
I find this very encouraging.
What is changing today?