Friday, January 30, 2009

If Autism Is A Joy Why Is It In The DSM?

If autism is a joy, a simple natural variation that brings with it many blessings, then why is it found and described in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders of the American Psychiatric Association?

Why are children as young as 2 years of age diagnosed with autism spectrum disorders ... Pervasive Developmental Disorders? Why do parents take their children for medical assessments that result in "autism spectrum" diagnoses? If their condition was one which brings such great joy then why visit a doctor to discuss it?

I am one of those old fashioned males who doesn't particularly like visiting doctors' offices. I will probably live a somewhat shorter life than I otherwise might because I just don't like going to see the doctor on a regular basis. I can not imagine going to a doctor to have him/her examine, assess or diagnose .... a joyful condition. What would possess some of the persons assessed as adults with autistic disorders to attend at the offices of a medical or psychological professional for an assessment of a joyful condition subsequently diagnosed as autistic disorder?

If the medical model of autism is to be cast aside, as those in the ASAN/Neurodiversity movement headquarters at the "autism" page advocate, then why refer to autism, a medical term, at all?

Bookmark and Share


Claire said...

Correct as always Harold...just like saying disability is natural...just another fun way to live!

jonathan said...

Actually some persons in the ND movement have advocated for having autism stricken from the DSM and make the comparisons of homosexuality being stricken in the 1970s. Yet, at least some in the ND movement deny that they are saying autism is not a disability, have their children diagnosed by doctors, and in the case of Kristina Chew who says she is not suffering or does not want her son's autism to be expunged, seek ABA for their children, have them enrolled in special education services at taxpayer expense and even drugs her son with dangerous psychiatric medications. Go figure.

Unknown said...


What meaning does the term "autism" have if it is not a reference to one of the referenced PDD's in the DSM?

Homosexuality is a clearly identifiable concept - sexual preference for the same sex, a meaning which exists outside a medical manual.

But what does autism mean if the medical model is rejected?

jonathan said...

I'm not sure harold guess you will have to ask Michelle Dawson and your other friends on the autism hub that.

Unknown said...

yeah Jonathan

I have a lot of buddies at the Autism Hub I could ask. LOL.

Anonymous said...

I couldn't have said it better myself! You write just as I think, but much more concretely and beautifully!