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

Monday, October 29, 2012

If They Had Known

Trigger Warning: This is about what I think would have happened if people had known, which means I'm talking about therapies that are abusive.

If they had known, everything would have been a symptom. When I bubbled over with math (yes, my longest-running special interest is math) in the car, asking and asking and asking questions into multiple digits, it would have been a sign of perseveration, of the dreaded AUTISM. Fixitfixitnow! When I played with the same person every day, unless she played with someone else, in which case I played alone? Difficulty forming peer relationships- AUTISM. Fixitfixitnow! I may well have been dragged away from my friend and made to socialize with the others.
People would be told to be my friend, which doesn't work anyways. I would have been resented for it.
When, in first grade, I said that five was the cube root of 125 instead of one plus four or two plus three or six minus one or even ten divided by two like the "showoff" did (yes, I really did say cube root of 125) it would have been a failure to pick up on social cues (AUTISM. Fixitfixitnow!), which yes, that was part of it, but it was mostly because I was bored. Even less than the nearly nothing that I got would have been done to deal with the fact that in math, I was bored.
There would have been therapy to help me do what I wasn't really interested in anyways.
My preference for Tinker-Toys and Legos and Lincoln Logs (but mostly Tinker Toys and Legos) over dolls would have been (take your pick)
  • Failure to learn gender roles because I don't get social cues, so it would have to be taught. 
  • Lack of varied and spontaneous social imitative play (not sure how one fixes this or why we need to)
  • Inappropriate play, since I mixed the Tinker Toys with the Legos and that's not how they were designed.
  • Lack of interest in social stuff, since, well, girls play dolls with other girls, so it's social.
You know what that means- AUTISM. Fixitfixitnow!
And we haven't even gotten to the flapping yet.
In third grade, when we played Round The World, when I answered, I jumped and flapped. It wasn't intentional. It just came out, and thinking about not doing it would have slowed me down in answering, so I didn't, mostly. I actually did get bullied over this, since it was obvious and different, but I didn't have therapists and teachers "working on it" with me. No one did therapy to try to make me stop, and they would have, I'm sure. Because it's AUTISM.  Fixitfixitnow!
The hiccups that still make me jump sometimes would have been somehow my fault, I'm sure. (Perhaps they would have been the reason I went gluten free? That would have stunk- I practically live on pasta and milk right now.) It's actually a matter of physics- my hiccups are unusually forceful, and still change my momentum significantly now, with twice the mass I had then. No amount of therapy can override physics, but I'm sure they would have tried, and I'm sure they would have denied that it is, in fact, a matter of physics. No, it would have been AUTISM. Fixitfixitnow!
When I fidgeted (and oh, did I fidget!) they could have done more than just take my fidget toy (which they did, once up to an including my pen!) They could have done therapy (read: abuse that they call therapy) to make me ashamed of my fidgeting, to make me feel like it was wrong, and to probably still fail at stopping it.
There would have been accommodations, but not the ones I wanted, not the ones I needed. They would not have included being allowed to do something with my hands during class so as to pay attention better, nor would they have likely included what essentially amounted to ignoring prerequisites in high school so as to skip Geometry, Algebra II, and Physics II and take the higher level stuff I really wanted to take. They would have started that later, if at all, as opposed to the earlier I wish I had gotten. They would have cared more about my trouble with social skills. Because it's AUTISM. Fixitfixitnow.
And it wouldn't have helped. People having known that I'm autistic would have been actively bad, and I know I'm not alone in this.

1 comment:

  1. yes. that. basically story of my life. fixitnow! Part of me is glad that my mother held my diagnosis as a giant secret - she saved me from the crazy fixitnow people (aside from herself).


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