Note For Anyone Writing About Me

Guide to Writing About Me

I am an Autistic person,not a person with autism. I am also not Aspergers. The diagnosis isn't even in the DSM anymore, and yes, I agree with the consolidation of all autistic spectrum stuff under one umbrella. I have other issues with the DSM.

I don't like Autism Speaks. I'm Disabled, not differently abled, and I am an Autistic activist. Self-advocate is true, but incomplete.

Citing My Posts

MLA: Hillary, Alyssa. "Post Title." Yes, That Too. Day Month Year of post. Web. Day Month Year of retrieval.

APA: Hillary, A. (Year Month Day of post.) Post Title. [Web log post]. Retrieved from http://yesthattoo.blogspot.com/post-specific-URL.

Monday, December 4, 2017

What if they're stimming with the device?

In response to the fact that it is not OK to take someone's communication device away, ever, apparently it is common to ask, what if the person is stimming and (we assume) that's interfering with communication.

There are a few points I want to make in response to that. Some I've seen elsewhere. Some, less so.

  • What would you do if a kid was vocally stimming, with their natural voice, and you thought that was impeding their communication? Still not taking away their voice, right? Even if you think they're doing something noncommunicative with their voice, you're still taking their voice in that example. Never means never. (This is mentioned in the PrAACtical AAC post, but it was also my immediate gut reaction.)
    • Or what would you do if you heard me stimming with my AAC device? Cause yeah, I'm an adult and you know I can communicate and all, but I do that sometimes. Would you consider taking my device? I'm kind of assuming it's a no there because the idea that you might try is a bit too scary for me to look at right now, but why wouldn't you do that to me, if you would to them? (This is somewhat an explanation to my immediate gut reaction.)
  • Keep in mind that communicative echolalia is a thing. In my experience ... yeah, sometimes repeating words or sounds because it feels good is a thing but there's often a meaning. (pickles pickles pickles pickles pickles resulted in my getting pickles, in college. It was also stimmy, as a side bonus.) For those looking for citations on the communicative functions of echolalia, Barry Prizant did some work on that (Prizant & Duchan, 1981; Prizant & Rydell, 1984). I don't trust him on the whole, remember my reactions to Uniquely Human, but communicative functions of echolalia is a useful thing he did.
  • Echolalia, repeating words and phrases is also how a lot of autistic people learn language in the first place. The thing that is how we learn language is not actually a barrier to communication and if this is what's going on, your assumption that this is a barrier to communication is just wrong. Do not pass Go. Do not collect $200.
  • Also, is the babbling stage a thing with AAC use? Cause it usually is with oral speech and it's not successful communication yet but it has to happen in order to get to successful communication later. Exploring language and using it in unexpected ways is part of learning language. (This shows up in the PrAACtical AAC post.)
  • Stimming is great. I am usually stimming in some way. It's not usually vocal because that's just not what tends to work for me, but I am usually stimming. Hence, fidget spinners and blanket pieces. The fact that a person is, in fact, stimming does not mean you should stop them from doing whatever it is they're doing to stim. Suggesting alternative ways of stimming can be OK under some circumstances, but seriously, "they're stimming" doesn't mean "they should stop." Similarly, "it's echolalia" doesn't mean "they should stop."
Academicy Citations

Prizant, B. M., & Duchan, J. F. (1981). The functions of immediate echolalia in autistic children. Journal of speech and hearing disorders, 46(3), 241-249.
Prizant, B. M., & Rydell, P. J. (1984). Analysis of functions of delayed echolalia in autistic children. Journal of speech and hearing research, 27(2), 183-192.

No comments:

Post a Comment

I reserve the right to delete comments for personal attacks, derailing, dangerous comparisons, bigotry, and generally not wanting my blog to be a platform for certain things.