Tag Archives: good things

Laura Spoerl – How My Autism Affects Sex, and How Sex Affects My Autism – The Mighty

“Do Autistic people have sex?” Yes – we do… and sometimes we don’t. That all depends on the situation.

I don’t talk about sex much on my blog but sex happens so let’s talk about the amazing article written by Laura Spoerl contributor to one of my favorite sights – The Mighty.

Sometimes when you have sensory processing disorder sex is uncomfortable even if your partner is doing everything right. It can be hard for us to communicate with our partners about our needs and discomfort.

For me sex can be very pleasurable, painful, and intense.

I still think of it as something used for reproduction more than anything else.

I’ve got a strange relationship with my own sexuality. There have been times in my life where I was non-sexual, hyper-sexual,  sapiosexual, and bisexual. Honestly I don’t know  where my sexuality stands. I just love good people.

Although I can completely relate to what she has to say – I can take NO credit for the information below PLEASE do check out Laura’s full post HERE on The Mighty.

We are all creatures who derive satisfaction from and continuously seek out anything that feels good to us. Individuals on the spectrum are not exempt. I crave intimacy because regardless of what I may have, it’s still a natural instinct. Like flirting, if I initiate sex I’m better able to control the sensory reactions that sometimes come up for me.

Participating in flirting and sex calls us to be present in those moments. With autism it means I’m constantly analyzing it. It’s automatic and subconscious. I actually have to tell myself somewhere in my brain to stop, loosen up the rigidity, and just feel and go with the flow.

PLEASE do check out Laura’s full post HERE on The Mighty.

Huffington Post says: Autism Is Really a Super Power

I love beautiful stories, and always feel the need to share when they come across my news feed.

A parent is awakened by the wise words of an Aspie.

“Why can’t you just accept us the way we are? We are not trying to talk you into thinking like us. Or seeing the world like we do. We are not saying your way of thinking and acting is bad. We accept you. So tell me, why can’t you just accept us?”

Perhaps, it is not the “Aspies” who need the healing. Perhaps our children with the autistic label are really here to teach us to stop trying to change people and to just love them.

Read more in the full article by Jema Anderson here.

Autism is Really a Super Power originally appeared on GypsyJema.

 

Autistic Genius and Cure Speak — The Bullshit Fairy

I stumbled across this the other day on one of my favorite blogs. Please check out the original author’s page for more great content.

I love that I’m noticing more people speaking up and against any of talk of a cure for Autism. But please make sure you’re using the right explanation. When you tell people that autism shouldn’t be cured and support your argument by using examples of geniuses that were suspected or confirmed to be autistic, such as Newton, Mozart or […]

via Autistic Genius and Cure Speak — The Bullshit Fairy

Hannah Riedel Shares What She Likes About Being Autistic

Original video by Hannah Riedel on YouTube. I do not own the rights to this video. Hannah is amazing and you should check out and follow her channel on YouTube.

This month, Autism Awareness Month, I am sharing awareness of Autism through the eyes of real Aspies. Hannah shares her stories on YouTube and helps show the world what being on the spectrum is like for her.

 

Limpsfield Grange Girls with Autism

Original video by LimpsfieldGrange1 can be found on YouTube.

This was made by the autistic students at Limpsfield Grange School to raise awareness of girls with autism and was sponsored by vInspired.
This film has certainly raised awareness and ITV have made a one hour documentary about the school, we await the transmission date.
Our students have also written a book ‘M is for Autism’ which is being launched on 1st July by Jessica Kingsley publishers. To pre-order the book on Amazon click on the link http://amzn.to/1HYKOWH

Thrive With Aspergers – 3 Important Ways To Honor World Autism Day

April 2nd is World Autism Day.  One of the podcasts that I listen to regularly, Thrive With Aspergers, recently uploaded a podcast that really stirred something within me.

I started my blog because a lot of websites about Autism were not managed by Autistics. In addition, medical websites tend to focus n Autism as something that makes a person defective or diseased.

I am not defective, or diseased, I am Autistic and my Autism makes me who I am. Cure culture scares me, because it makes me feel as if there is a large part of the world who wishes people like me did not exist.

The text below is a small portion of an amazing blog post on the Thrive With Autism blog. Please be sure to check out the full post here and subscribe to the podcast (Stephen Borgman does an amazing job maintaining the site).

 

Autism Acceptance: The Next Step For Autism Day

Celebrating an autism day is not enough. Awareness by itself is insufficient.

Apartheid was a system of segregation enforced by legislation. It kept the white Afrikaaners in control as the dominant party from 1948 to 1994. Through Nelson Mandela’s imprisonment and struggles, democracy finally came to South Africa.

Through slavery, United States Caucasians controlled African people from 1619 – 1865.However, the civil rights movement took years of constant struggle to overcome the effects of racism, culminating in the death of Martin Luther King, Jr. in 1968.

In the same way that racism has held peoples hostage in societies, misinformation often leads to discrimination and inequity for minority groups in our country: including autistics.

We need to combine autism awareness with autism acceptance.

Everyone should transform autism awareness day into autism acceptance action every single day.

I’m indebted to Amethyst Schaber and Shannon Des Roches Rosa Souza for showing us how to honor autism awareness day with acceptance and action.

In this video, Amethyst Schaber, a 24 year old autistic woman and activist, opened my eyes to the difference between autism awareness and autism acceptance.

First, autism awareness day has too often spread misinformation about autistics. Many of the people who’ve promoted autism awareness come from a place of love, but from a limited point of view.

Too often, those who promote autism awareness think that autism needs to be cured, or loved ones who see autism as something to be cured.

Even though the effort to raise awareness comes from a place of love, this view of autism has mistakenly spread the view of autistics as “sick, broken, missing, kidnapped, suffocating under layer of autism that parents have to fight and combat.” (quote from Amethyst Schaber)

What we need, instead, just as the civil rights movement needed minority voices, is autism awareness with acceptance.

Please be sure to check out the full post here and subscribe to the podcast.

Tips for Dealing With Sensory Sensitivities

People have asked about tips for managing some of the more debilitating symptoms associated with Sensory Sensitivities or Sensory Processing Disorder.

I want to make it clear that I am NOT a doctor and am not intending any of this info to be medical advice. These are just some quick tips that can make your life easier. 

Make a Sensory Kit – Create a travel kit filled with items that make your sensory issues more tolerable.

Every one is different but I always keep the following in my purse:

  • Sunglasses (different darkness levels for indoors and outdoors)
  • Ear plugs
  • Wireless head phones or ear buds
  • Some lotion or scented oil that smells pleasant to me
  • Gum or candy
  • Something to read/entertain myself if I need a break (I normally use my phone for this).

Get plenty of rest – I know I can enjoy family outings and group settings if I am well rested and fresh.

Eat Healthy – Taking care of my body helps keep my mind clear.

Exercise – When I exercise I have more energy and require less rest in order to function. It is hard to get started sometimes but once I work fitness into my routine I tone up nicely. This is good for my self esteem as much as my energy level.

Don’t be afraid to say no – If you feel the need to speak up about something don’t be afraid to advocate for yourself. Be honest about your limitations, but also be willing to challenge yourself from time to time.

Facing your fears is powerful – It is easy to let the anxiety and what-if’s paralyze you, but when you begin to face your fears one by one you will eventually defeat them. Don’t be afraid of your own life, scared to move forward.

Make note of a quiet space where you can get away – try to scope out quiet spots where you can step away for a break if you decide you need one. Look around for a few options. In a pinch a bathroom can be a perfect sanctuary (assuming you are somewhere clean).

Leave when you need to leave – Don’t stay past the point or up to the point of a meltdown or shutdown. Leaving early looks a lot better than freaking out or imploding.

My Aspie Super Powers

I am an Aspie super hero

My secret powers would amaze you

Although I hide behind a mask

My perception and whit are one of a kind

I am an Aspie super hero

My brain his hard to beat

This might be hard for you to understand

That my mind works differently

Please don’t be fooled

my different style is my my biggest strength

Because I am an Aspie superhero

I just don’t wear a cape

If You Took Me to Lunch – Aspian Super Hero

If you took me to lunch, you would not notice that I am Autistic.

My face is made up and my hair is where it belongs. I leave the office looking neatly put together.

I may let you drive or take my own car, putting on my sunglasses before leaving the building.

If we ride together, I let you talk in the car and may even say a few words myself. If I am feeling particularly relaxed I may delight you with a story or joke.

When I’m focused, paying careful attention to every action, I am able to be tactful and polite. I remember to smile and laugh at your jokes. Hiding moments of confusion behind laughter and smiles.

I can be bright and bubbly, happy and silly, whatever mood the situation calls for. So many beautiful masks, crafted with love and hand painted. Each one a well thought out, functional, piece of art.

There are deep waves behind my eyes. Turbulent waters of the mind, continuously churning. I can be as deep as the ocean or as empty as the sky on a clear bright day.

Thinkers have a tendency to worry. We see problems all around us and are compelled to make things better. It is hard to sit still when there is so much work to be done.

Sometimes there is so much to do that the thought of starting a project can be overwhelming.

I’ve trailed off in a day dream, someplace far away. I catch myself and snap back into the conversation. This happens so quickly that most people would never notice that I’d been checked out.

My mind is running a million miles per minute, darting in and out of mental rooms as we talk.

I do best with one on one interactions, but also enjoy hanging out in small intimate groups.

Sometimes I may come off as shy, other times I may be overly talkative. It really depends on my energy level and the people I am surrounded by.

I am an Aspian Super Hero and Chameleon-ing is my specialty.

 

I See Pain & I Feel It – Mirror-touch Synesthesia

I’ve always had this strange and inconvenient ability to feel pain when I see it. The emotions of other people also tend to rub off one me. For me this is a strange situation, since I struggle with empathy and identifying emotions (even my own).

What is Mirror-Touch Synesthesia?

The condition, known as mirror-touch synesthesia, is related to the activity of mirror neurons, cells recently discovered to fire not only when some animals perform some behavior, such as climbing a tree, but also when they watch another animal do the behavior. For “synesthetes,” it’s as if their mirror neurons are on overdrive.

I find this extremely ironic, since my ability to empathize with other people seems to be extremely week. People on the Autism Spectrum tend to have spiky profiles. Perhaps this explains the apparent crossed wire.

Maybe my lack of empathy comes from problems that I have with theory of mind (the ability to attribute mental states). I feel pain, and cannot ignore it, however when my mental state of mind changes, there seems to be a delay between the change and when my mind registers a change.

Synesthesia and Empathy
Think about the last time you watched someone take a bad fall or listened to a friend grind his or her teeth. For a split second, you cringe at the thought of physically feeling what they must feel. In a sense, we all empathize to some degree with the physical feelings of others. For an individual with mirror-touch synesthesia, however, the area of the brain that creates this empathy is hyperactive. These individuals don’t just cringe at the thought of comparable pain, but they might actually feel it themselves.
– See more HERE 

I hid this “ability” for many years but it has been with me since I was a child. When I was young, the kids and adults did not seem to have this ability. When I tried to explain what I was going through people dismissed me. Nobody seemed to believe what I was trying to say, so I stopped talking about (and shamefully hid) this super power.

A significant minority of otherwise healthy people experience not just the emotional component of pain, but also the sensory one, when they observe others in pain. When asked about the pain they experience when observing somebody else in pain, all thirty one responders spoke about it as if it was normal, and assumed that their experiences were representative of the population as a whole. Interestingly, no significant relationship was found between the reported levels of pain intensity and empathy, or feelings of disgust or unpleasantness.

More on Science Blog HERE.

Hopefully that hopes to explain how when I see pain, I also feel it.