Neurodiversity and neurotypical are terms developed by the Autism community to describe the difference between individuals with Autism and individuals with typically developed neurological systems. Last evening, Partners In Leaning hosted a viewing of the movie, Loving Lampposts. At the conclusion of the film, a discussion grew regarding how much value society places on conformity as it relates to the way individuals communicate with one another. Did I use the word “individual” again? In a country where individualism resides at the core of its soul, it often appears that those who have a disability label attached to their identity are not celebrated for their individuality.
One parent remarked that many of her child’s teachers and therapists, instead of concentrating their efforts on building a relationship with the child or adapting their teaching strategies to the child’s communication and learning style, have spent endless wasted hours trying to extinguish behaviors that are not harmful to anyone, including the child, and do not impede upon the learning process. The behaviors she described were simply autistic behaviors. The motivation to extinguish these behaviors is based on the notion that if a child “appears” to look less autistic, they will become less autistic and what------become more socially accepted?
Do you think we will ever grow, as a universal society, to learn to view every human being as simply an individual and uniquely valued member of the human race?
Katherine Generaux, Community Inclusion