Autistic Acceptance Month – Identity language

A dragon in the shape of an infinity symbol that is rainbow coloured like the neurodiversity symbol

The artist for the above image is @Kayas_Kosmos.

A few notes: When I first got into advocacy for Autism – it was a minefield and I made a lot of errors – it can be brutal if you are new – there’s no one right way to refer to yourself but the community by a significant margin prefers Identity-First language (e.g. Autistic, Autistic community). Person first language implies that you have autism – as though it’s a disease.

I am Autistic

I do not believe Autism is something that needs to be cured – I need accommodations – not eugenics. Person with autism personally denies me my identity – I am Autistic – with all it’s struggles and it’s benefits – I will always be inseparable from Autism. It’s not just something I “have” – it’s a core part of who I am.

I use capitalised language after finding this passage in ‘Sincerely Your Autistic Child‘.

“You’ll also see some authors capitalize “Autistic” in a similar way that many Deaf or Black people capitalize those terms out of a sense of identity or pride.”

Sincerely Your Autistic Child

I am proud of being Autistic. It’s not something to be ashamed for – if you do any research or read the rest of my blogs you’ll see it’s deeply affected me – I have significant trauma due to being Autistic – but it’s also the thing I love about me the most. I hold these two truths in my head at the same time. It’s caused me the most harm, but that’s due to it not being understood.

A quick note on my other neurodivergence

I consider myself to be an ADHD / OCD / Dyscalculic / Dysgraphic person too. They are core parts of my identity. Every one of these makes navigating the neurotypical world a struggle frequently – but how can I say I don’t want to have these – they are also me too. They come with unique ways of making accommodations for my own way of thinking. I love these too. I wish the standard was for all people to be proud of being different through their own unique neurotypes – the world would be a better place, if everyone loved and accepted the things they cannot change.

The exception… (maybe?) Trauma, disease.

I do refer to myself as a person with cPTSD / Crohn’s Disease.

I can also see some small benefits in having cPTSD, but it’s very much outweighed all the time by getting triggered and losing frequents amount of time and sleep – not to mention that it can trigger a meltdown/shutdown.

Maybe one day I’ll get closer to controlling it. Until then… It’s something I have.

Words I prefer

Māori words for Autism

Kura Urupare:

Kura = Gift/Treasure,

Uru=in(pērā ki te Ruru)

pare = around your head

(ko te rae a te Ruru) = Kura Urupare.

Kura Urupare = Gift of response/sensories

Takiwātanga:

“my/her/his/their own time and space”

Further Information and Perspectives

Person First vs Identity First Language

Person-First Language: What It Is, and When Not To Use It

Person with autism or autistic person? My problem with “person-first language” for autism

Autistic Person or Person With Autism? – an #ActuallyAutistic Perspective | Neurodivergent Rebel

Daily blog challenge

I will be writing every day on being Autistic for April using this list of prompts:

Alt-Text Format with links to other blogs – Autistic Acceptance Month – 30 Days of Acceptance and appreciation:

Published by roryreckons

I am an ADHD/Autism/OCD advocate and independent ADHD/Autism researcher. I am training in 2021 to become an ICF Accredited ADHD coach. I write mainly about ADHD/Autism/OCD/Mental health issues, but will also discuss morality, abolition, and current affairs occasionally.

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