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Archive for the ‘mistakes i’ve made’ Category

“Hey, is that….is that Ol’ Scarecrow? Nah, I never recognize anybody I’m supposed to, especially without hearing their voice. I’m just misrecognizing some extra or something. There’s no reason for Ol’ Scarecrow to even be in this movie.

“And now he’s gone. See? I was wrong.”

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Recently, abfh posted about the potential problems of using the word “meltdown” to describe responses to sensory overload:

Instead of using such negative and inaccurate language to describe our own behaviors and those of our children…we should take a proactive and non-stigmatizing approach and recognize that these problems are situational, rather than specifically autistic. When stress becomes a problem, we should consider what changes to our environment would help to reduce our stress. And—last but not least—from now on, let’s reserve the word “meltdown” for circumstances where its use is more appropriate.

Such as, for instance, Chernobyl.

As I said in the comments, I didn’t really understand what a “meltdown” is. I knew they had to do with sensory overload and weren’t voluntary, and had read descriptions of how they looked to other people. I get particularly confused when meltdowns are contrasted with temper tantrums. And this confusion, I’ve realized, is because “temper tantrum” in my mind means a very specific thing. (more…)

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When I was 17, I made a website I did it because, at the time, a lot of information about my diagnosis was in jargon-filled textbooks for neuropsychologists. Parsing it all really sucks–especially when you’re, like, 14 years old–and I wanted to explain some of this information in clearer language. I also wanted to explain exactly what my skillset is. (For some reason, people in my real life are totally stymied by it, and I don’t know why. It’s always made perfect sense to me). But more than that, I wanted a space where other people with this diagnosis and their families could find each other. I wanted to meet people like me.

A lot of people stopped by. I learned how silly it was to expect people with my diagnosis to be “like me” and I made a ton of friends. I enjoyed meeting other NLDers and their parents. But slowly, very slowly, some of the comments I got started to weird me out:

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hair.jpg

[Image Description: A faceless person with brown hair parted cleanly down the middle. The back of the office chair she’s sitting in is visible, and behind her you can see a white wall and a wooden door flung open with a plastic bag on the doorknob. In the lower left corner, you can see some pink shoes.]

A friend once told me that my disability was “semi-visible.” At the time, I thought I knew what she meant. Now I realize I don’t.

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“Hey, do y’all have the new Super Smash Bros.?”

I can’t believe I’m asking this question. Fighting games aren’t exactly my favorite videogame genre. Sure, I fiddle with them sometimes—at 12, I rented Mortal Kombat II at the video store because “Hey! It’s the game Congress hates!”—but they aren’t much fun to play if you don’t have real people to fight. (All my friends are mature, responsible adults who’d rather go out drinking at the bar than play some videogame). So I wouldn’t pay $50 for a fighting game, and I sure as heck wouldn’t show up excitedly at Target on release date.

I hadn’t.

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