Today’s guest post was written by Neurodivergent K, an autistic writer, speaker, and gymnastics coach, and a friend and mentor of mine. This post originally appeared on Radical Neurodivergence Speaking and has been reprinted with permission.
The stated goal/implied promise of many behavioral programs “for autism”, based on UCLA’s Young Autism program of the 80s, is “indistinguishabilitly from peers”. What this implies, though cannot say flat out, is that the subject of the interventions will be NT. Well, not really be NT. But they will look NT.
Except, not really. No promises are made as to neurotypicality if one looks at the definitions used to make these claims. The definition used in the Young Autism Project? Placement in a typical kindergarten class and being promoted yearly. More recent literature has used the definition of being placed in regular education and having at least one non disabled friend. How many Autistic folks do you know who meet this definition? And yet how many of us are so not like our peers in most other ways? Continue reading