Note: before you read this, I wrote this from my viewpoint of having Aspergers Syndrome. I did not take the potential impact on board, as this was intended as a creative piece.
At the end of last year, as I finally began to finish my daily posting challenge, I was researching how I could make this blog better. One of the suggested posts that was voted for was “A manifesto for Autism”.
You see, I think we are… misunderstood. So: what would you do, theoretically, if you could change the world?
First: interviews could change. Seriously.
I dread going to interviews, and would rather be one of the interviewers, in line with the industry I am currently training for. But, these are full of social cues, open ended questions (which I don’t understand), which may not necessarily trip up someone who is neurotypical.
And: traits that are attributed to being on spectrum could be so useful once employed. And I mean in the sense of tailoring these traits.
Why have someone on spectrum as a volunteer dog trainer, when they have a degree, and significant experience, in law? (Scenario that I saw on Television once.) The person in question was brilliant at law-and I cannot understand why he was not put into a relevant job. (The rejection letter said they could not support him, due to being on spectrum. *sighs*)
These skills could lead to great amounts of innovation. And besides, why would an employer wish not to gain that?
Better provisions need to be made. Teachers could do with more training, and questions could be better phrased in exams.
A teacher I had once said in front of my class “Have you met someone with Aspergers? They’re a bit cold and a bit weird”. I think that he could have been trained to understand my learning needs, and Aspergers-and although this remark was not directed at me, I still found it offensive.
As to exams: they need to be changed. In education, we wish for everyone to do their best, right? Well, the way an exam is phrased can be a brick against that-as questions are phrased for their to be a line of reasoning, rather than a ‘tick box’ style. My learning support tried to help me understand them better, but not all teachers understood, or tried to help. (Why disadvantage a whole demographic?)
The system is based on the majority passing, but why should it not be possible for everyone who works hard to pass?
I would like for Anti-Vaxxers to be challenged more openly. Oh, and the claim that “Autistic children just need to be disciplined properly” also.
In popular media, people on Spectrum are sometimes portrayed negatively, inaccurately, or are the ‘butt of the joke’ in the script set up. Why can we not have a proper series, where Aspergers/Autism is portrayed as not being a bad thing, with accuracy?
Diagnosis. Yeah, about that… I will probably devote another post to it, but some parts of the assessment I had to undergo I was not happy with. (Although it got me the label I obviously had, sometimes I was frustrated throughout the assessment. E.g being told to keep looking at a flip card of faces, to identify the emotions on the faces, when I had already said I can’t. ) I think that some changes could be made.
I have been privileged to work with people on spectrum-such as through my blog-and I am ultimately grateful to have met the people I have met. The large majority are some of the nicest, kindest people I could have hoped to meet.