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

APA: Zisk, A. H. (Year Month Day of post.) Post Title. [Web log post]. Retrieved from

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Mom learns son, 2, has autism.

That's the article I'm talking about right now. The article starts off with the scary 1 in 88. Seriously guys? If you're going to include the Aspergers, PDD-NOS, and generally anyone who doesn't feel their own life to be a tragedy in your statistics, you better include what we're like if you want to include our numbers. Still not saying you have to pretend that the people you're focusing on now don't exist- just don't pretend WE don't exist either.

And it seems that ignoring all autistics as people is going on here, since (begin sarcasm) apparently both (implying two) sides of the spectrum are covered when you're a social worker who deals with autism and you have an autistic kid. We can apparently cover it all without an actual autistic person. Who knew? (end sarcasm)

And they called the diagnosis heartbreaking in the article, which is largely a human interest story about how she copes with the tragedy of having an autistic kid. I seriously think that Don't Mourn For Us should be required reading for anyone who wants to write about autism. If they go on to ignore it, that's not good,  but at least they KNOW what we hear when they call our lives tragedies and pray for a cure, and they can't feign ignorance of how much they hurt the actually autistic when they call it a heartbreaking diagnosis and all.

And what's with the special diets? I mean, yes, a lot of us have gastrointestinal weirdness, but coming up with a diet that deals with that wont consume entire days. It sounds to me like someone told her that certain diets can help recover kids from autism, which just isn't the case.

SoulCollage strikes me as a bit odd, but if that's how she wants to do her grieving, away from the living child she has, and if that helps her, it's her business, not mine or anyone else's. I think talking about it in an article her kid might read one day violates that ``away from the living, autistic child she has" part, though... Because googling your parents names is totally something people do, and that might come up. It might even come up if he googles his own name. (Have most people done that out of curiosity? Or is it an autism thing? Or is it a me thing? I dunno. But he could find it is the point.)
And she says:

“If you know a person who has a special needs child, make sure you are paying attention to the parent as well. Check in with the parents frequently.”
It's true... but she put it in an article that payed no attention to the kid at all... so I'm not sure what the as well is. As well as what? As well as ignoring the kid? No, don't ignore the kid. Find out if the kid is happy. Make sure the parents aren't abusing the kid in the name of therapy. Check in with the kid frequently. Check in with the parents too, but don't let the parents answer for the kid when you check in with the kid. Deal with non-verbal answers if you have to, but get the answers from the kid.

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