Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Autism Reality NB Reviews Alex Plank's "Autism" Reality Video

Alex Plank a young man with an Asperger's diagnosis, apparently a very, very mild version of Aspergers, has produced a video called "Autism Reality". The video can be accessed at Static Vox.

In the video, posted on a Facebook thread started by Lisa Jo Rudy on which I participated, Mr. Plank mentions the autism spectrum a few times. And he includes interviews of some nice young people agreeing with Mr. Plank that autism is a "good" thing.

I offered the following video review on the FB discussion thread:

"Autism Reality Alex?

With respect, the autistic children like the boy who died recently in Nova Scotia, like my son who went missing, walking through dangerous traffic, the many who are never found safe might disagree. The autistic children who injure themselves with dangerous head banging, severe biting, chewing on their cheeks or starving themselves because of extreme taste and food texture aversions might disagree. The non verbal autistics living in institutional care might have a different perspective. I am glad though that you paid lip service to the concept of a spectrum of autism in your production. And I hope you, Ms Chew and Ms Rudy don't mind me mentioning some of these other autism realities.

Other than that it is a nice video, lots of good communication, good social interaction, lots of high functioning skills like driving, attending busy, crowded events, good video production skills and no behavior challenges. And of course there are no cognitive impairment issues. Good idea not to confuse the viewing public with that whole "comorbidity" thing.

Two suggestions if you ever edit the video though. One, maybe you could mention the fact that the autism spectrum refers to a spectrum of "disorders". Two, maybe you could add the dates that Einstein and Van Gogh received their autism diagnoses.

Harold Doherty

PS. I like the "autism reality" bit"

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Stephanie said...

I left this comment at a "Neurodiverse" blog and it was never published:

"I don’t know why Asperger’s always seems to be associated with “ultra-high-functioning” and “talent.” Throughout my life I’ve seen plenty of those diagnosed with “Asperger’s” who are just as disabled as those with “Kanner’s Autism.” They only difference I could see is that they didn’t have a speech delay.

I’m not sure where the stereotype of “Aspie” genius comes from because most “Aspies” I know are NOT superior in any way: they have serious difficulties in life. When I see people like Ari Ne’eman, Katie Milller et.el. say they have Asperger’s it is clear to me that they are obviously VERY high functioning Asperger’s because everyone else I have ever seen in real life with an AS label is nothing like the “Aspies” I see on the internet.

Heck, I was even diagnosed with Asperger’s once because I am a “high-functioning autistic” and some doctors will label every high-functioning autistic with Asperger’s regardless of history or present level of functioning. I’m obviously nothing like a non-verbal adult in a group home but yet I’m nothing like Shiny Aspies, either.

So, I just use the HFA label for myself since “Autistic Disorder” has been my primary diagnosis for years."

Adrianna said...

I am one of those ultra-high functioning people with Asperger's Syndrome, and I'm not as normal-looking as he is. I'm really good at communcating at fist, but long-term relationships are emotional expression and affect are next to impossible. Physical affection? Forget it. Of course, I love busy, crowded events as long as I don't have to talk to anyone, have a quiet space to self-stimulate, etc. And give me five minutes to respond to each question. Hopefully the cops won't show and arrest me for being "crazy" when I do my little "Aspie" dance.

That's pretty normal, right? Uh-huh.