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

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

USA Today. Doing it WRONG.

Trigger Warning: Forced institutionalization

USA Today?
We need to have Words.
See, there is this article about how it's just so hard to institutionalize a mentally ill adult without their consent that you published today, that got Tweeted out (I replied. I think others should too.)
That's not even true
It's hard for people who don't know how to go about it, sure, but for people who do?
Well, Aspie Rhetor, can tell you all about that.
I say so because it happened to her.
You talked about it like protecting society and protecting the patients were somehow at odds with each other.
You implied advocates think it's too hard to institutionalize us against our wills.
Advocates for what?
Why were none of these advocates people who have mental illnesses?
Why were none of these advocates people who have been institutionalized, maybe unwillingly?
Why, once again, do we only hear about how people are afraid now, not about how they got there?
I can tell you of people who are afraid, get this, because the person they spent their time abusing has grown big enough to fight back, and this self-defense is the aggression that is then used to try to have them locked up to be abused more, to be abused again.
The fact that talking about the idea of people being "hospitalized against their will," also known as forced institutionalization, is something I need to trigger warn for? That should tell you something. It should tell you a lot. It should tell you that it's something that gives people PTSD. You know, one of those pesky mental illnesses that you're trying to fix with all this talk of hospitalizing people against their wills? Yeah. It gives people mental illnesses when you do that.
Before worrying about how hard or easy it is to stick someone in there against their will (and it needs to be harder, not easier,) let's worry about making sure that what happens doesn't hurt more than it helps, shall we?
And for pete's sake, STOP acting like immediate violent outbursts are linked to planned violence like the "recent heinous acts." They aren't, and that's just going to make stigma worse. You know, that thing where when it gets worse people won't choose to get the help that they know would help them because they're scared? Yeah. Counterproductive, much? 
The whole article get's filed under doing it WRONG.

Now for the slightly side-note-ish stuff:
Can we also mention the fact that the parents trying to do the institutionalization that got quoted were parents of minors, not parents of adults? Seriously. If you want to talk about adults, get quotes about adults. It's just good reporting.
Oh, and Liz?
Yeah, I remember you from #autismchat and after.
You still follow me on Twitter as I write this. I'll be disappointed, but not surprised, if you unfollowed me after this.
I sent you that direct message, several months ago.
No reply. 
Looks like we get to keep blogging at each other, doesn't it?
It's been better than six months since you said you wanted more time, that you were learning.
You haven't.
Remember "Nothing about us, without us"? It applies to all groups. You don't get to talk about mental illness without getting meaningful input from people who have them. Relatives don't count.
I wasn't really expecting anything different anymore, though, honestly.
Self-advocacy groups are used to empty promises, you know.

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