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People Often Shun People With Autism & Dementia...for the same reasons
The_Sun_Still_Rises
Posted: Thursday, September 29, 2016 10:24 PM
Joined: 7/24/2015
Posts: 3020


People often shun people with Autism and Dementia for the very same reasons...because we do no tend act like people expect people act. 

People with Autism often get over-stimulated in public and shut down, or make noises or movements (called stimming, or self-soothing behavior)...whereas people with dementia also often tend get over stimulated in public, and shut down, and start acting confused and behaving erratically. 

The common denominator is the public who generally does not understand this.  People tend be uncomfortable with and even fear that which they do not understand.  Part of this is due our human hard-wiring (we are hard-wired be wary of unusual things), but a larger part of it is due the public's lack of socialization these things...and general lack of understanding. 

Children with Autism generally have supportive parents and strong advocates trying change this.  Those of us with dementia, however, only have ourselves try change this and advocate for us.  Every now and then, we are lucky enough have a partner who will advocate for us...but this is still, unfortunately, rare. 

So what are we supposed do about this?  This is a question I and my daughter are often asking ourselves.  I mean, here we are, with diminishing language and communication abilities...which in and of itself makes people uncomfortable talk with us, and open us ridicule and insults...not mentioning, opens us questions about our cognitive abilities.  Again, this common denominator is the public, who tends no want listen someone with communication challenges...or, who simply, have a dementia diagnosis. 

I have often said in life, about various issues (ie...it no until men stop violence against women, that violence against women will stop...or, as long as we have excess food in our cupboards that people are starving (said at age 6)...or that we need speak with those who want war, if we want peace...rather than sing the choir of people who agree us, etc.).  But truly the same is here...until those around us, and in the public, can see us as human beings...they will no listen.  We can BE human beings all we like...but what are we really, if they are no willing see us as that?  That we require others...in order for us have rights...

...this no an easy tenant for those of us who see ourselves as independent. 

We are interdependent.  I love the saying someone put out on social media..."Alzheimer's Does Not Rob Us Of Our Dignity, You Do."

In any event, I am a real believer in no re-inventing the wheel...but rather looking at what has worked in the past and simply repeating it.  I see no reason no look at the Autism community's struggle for being recognized as whole complete people in their own right, rather than seen as suffering, or something for us mourn, or grieve,...but rather as lives for us celebrate and rejoice in. 

I am not really being able say what I am trying say here...but hopefully something I am trying say here is getting through my struggle communicate what I am seeing in a way others can see it also. 

Being a pioneer, for me, is seeking new ways look at the issues we face...and trying come up with new ideas and solutions...rather than simply accepting the way things have always been.  I might be the lone voice in it here...but whatever, Towanda!

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