#SayTheWord, Not “Special Needs”

#SayTheWord, Not “Special Needs”

Just yes to all of it!

Erin Human

The deeper I go into autistic culture and autistic rights activism, the more I find myself pulled to align my goals, my activism, and my identity with the broader disability rights community.

There’s a social media campaign going on right now to #SayTheWord – it was started by Lawrence Carter-Long, the Public Affairs Manager for the National Council on Disability, and is an active Twitter hashtag. The word, of course, is disabled.

The importance of this campaign is driven home to me over and over again as I see people performing ludicrous and painful contortions to avoid saying it. Reminder that when I make a criticism the way well-meaning people interact with disability, I am not attacking the people (parenthetical reminder that I was immersed in ableism myself not long ago), but inviting people to think about things in a different way.

Instead of saying disabled, nice people say things…

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I Abused Children And SO DO YOU: A Response To An ABA Apologist

I Abused Children And SO DO YOU: A Response To An ABA Apologist

An excellent piece. The only part I am missing is about how arguments like “makes our lives easier” “[child] has no problems anymore” completely eradicates the perspective of the child as such.

And a point I wish had been touched upon a little more is how ABA facilitates autistic people developing abusing relationships were rape is sadly only the dramatic tip of the iceberg.

Thank you for typing this word monster! You are a hero!

Diary Of A Birdmad girl

This was written in response to this article which was written in response to my first article:

You can read my first article here:

*CW: ABA/Autistic Conversion Therapy, abuse, torture (including graphic images and video of), mention of “awareness,” “recovery,” Autism Speaks, filicide, and links to all of this and other material that many people may find triggering. Please proceed with caution…

*CN: This is a very long read so settle in for a while (or save for later)…

Dear Condescending ‘Autism Mom,’

I’m assuming that’s what you call yourself since your views seem to be right in line with those who prefer that title. I also think it’s fair to make assumptions since you’ve made plenty about me.

Still, I wanted to sincerely thank you for writing your article, “True ABA Therapy Is Not Abuse: A Response.” You see, despite the fact that my article contained language…

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I am not aware if I have any stims but other than that it’s very much on point.

I think it is an autistic thing to be able to surpress one’s initial fear reaction (or any other reaction based on emotions). Society asks us to just deal with neon lights, this horrible smell, the background music, eye contact. Whatever it is. And often it causes something very akin to physical pain. Expressing that pain is often social suicide. I’m sure there’s other marginalised group with the same issues.

Autism and Expectations

You don’t look autistic.

Yes I do.

You don’t act autistic though.

Yes I do.

Yeah, but you’re not like “properly” autistic.

Yes I am.

You can make eye contact.

Yes I can.

You don’t flap all the time.

I do at birds.

You flap at birds?

I flap at birds.

Why do you flap at birds?

It would be rude not to wave at them when they wave at me.

That’s a bit weird.

Is it?

But you don’t do all that proper stimming and stuff, do you? Or do you?

Every day. Most moments of every day. See this?

Looks like a tiny bead mat.

Yup. I made it, I made lots of them, for when I lose them. I get distracted easily.

Can I have a go?

Go for it.

It feels nice.

It feels essential.

Why do you do it?

I’m an addict.

But it’s not…

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A ‘Winter’ Tale

the {ar}chive

By Jay Carr – The Boston Globe; Via Alan Rickman Fan Page

Getting a new role down cold, Alan Rickman makes his debut as a director

You’d know the languid, chiseled, resonant drawl with your eyes closed. It belongs to Alan Rickman, who has managed the difficult feat of remaining a respected British stage presence while launching a Hollywood career based on playing indolently sexy villains who seem amused by evil-doing. Perhaps because he holds strong socialist convictions, and to this day feels a conflict between Hollywood’s high-priced glitz and his egalitarian principles, he has not exactly been extroversion incarnate when talking about himself.

Maybe the reason Rickman is relaxed on a recent cold afternoon is that there is no audience except for a lone journalist in the tiny office borrowed from a theater manager. Certainly it helps that he isn’t going to have to talk about why women find…

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Alan Rickman Reads

The Poetics Project

When I read, I don’t hear my own voice in my head. Generally, I’ll hear someone with a British accent. Why? Because I like the way it sounds.

And, after watching some of my favorite movies like Sense and Sensibility or, you know, any Harry Potter film, I get Alan Rickman’s voice stuck in my head. For about a week on out, his voice echoes in my head as the voice of every play, poem, and novel I read.

And now I’m going to get Alan Rickman’s voice stuck in your head too. Youtube – beautiful, wonderful Youtube, has entire playlists of Alan Rickman just reading stuff, like poems and excerpts from novels and plays. My favorite reading, because the only thing I love more than Alan Rickman’s voice is Shakespeare’s works, is Alan Rickman’s reading of Sonnet 130.

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Question #135: How do I deflect the well-meaning people who ask me about my abusive dad?

Captain Awkward

Luke and Darth Vader in an Elevator

Hey Captain!

I’ve been dealing with a rather awkward social conundrum lately, and I’d love some advice. The short version:  I need to figure out how to fend off well-meaning questions from acquaintances about my semi-estranged father.

The longer version: my dad’s an alcoholic person with bipolar disorder, and he’s non med compliant. I grew up in a very unstable, sometimes emotionally abusive home, and it’s left it’s marks on me. My mom  was brave enough to divorce him a year ago, and I’m finally facing the demons my childhood left me with. I’m getting weekly therapy, and have taken steps to limit contact with my father.

The problem is, my dad was outwardly quite charming, and I often have to deal with people asking after him. I really don’t know how to answer friendly questions about him. I refuse to pretend everything is (and was always) peachy, and…

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