I originally posted this on my website No Stereotypes Here, and thought I'd share it here.
November 1st is Communication Shutdown, and from the responses, it seems that more and more people are questioning the method of this Autism awareness event. As has been pointed out by bbsmom, it spreads the myth that autistic people don't communicate, when in truth, we communicate in many different ways. While the attempt to understand our difficulties is admirable, I don't think that a non-autistic person can fully understand an autistic reality, even with some intense simulations.
Not that I'm against letting them try to understand us, as much as we try to understand non-autistics. However, from a community perspective, we should be listening to the different ways that Autistic people communicate.
At the end of my last post [of No Stereotypes Here], I stated that on November 1st, Autistic people should speak up and be heard. That in the absence of NT voices, Autistics should reclaim the Autism community by communicating in our own ways on our life experiences.
Yet, I must also add caution, to be mindful of the subject matters, as some subjects are triggers for people. I would hate to hear that a person had a panic attack, flashback or meltdown and suffered due to something in the information shared.
I would like the day to acknowledge our difficulties, yes, but also share our strengths, our passions, our interests, our "obsessions".
And so, for the intent of raising Autism awareness and battling negative stereotypes about Autism, I call that November 1st be Autistics Speaking Day.
Who will join me?
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