Everything You Thought You Knew

It’s funny how you think you know something but you actually don’t know how much you don’t know.

I mean specifically autism treatment. 

At diagnosis, I had very specific questions, such as:

Me: What treatment would be best for my son? What is proven effective therapy?

Diagnosers: Definitely ABA, it is the only evidence-based treatment for autism. 

Then, I did five seconds of research when I got home.

This video by someone who is #ActuallyAutistic, is pretty unequivocal in the opinion that ABA is not ok for autistic kids.

And this booklet prepared by the Autistic Self-Advocacy Network of Greater Boston goes more in depth on the issues from an adult autistic perspective. The top issues seem to be: teaching NT behaviors instead of treating underlying cause of autistic self soothing behaviors, teaching kids they can’t say no, and the punishment involved.

There are several other points I don’t think I have the ability to put into words this early in my research.

Finally, even autism parent guides caution newbies about being cautious of people who say they know how to treat autism. This section is haunting:

Throw out everything you think you know and question everything. 

There is a massive amount of misinformation/myths disguised as truth and fact regarding autism. You may hear people say things like “They are in their own little world,” or “they are imprisoned behind their autism.” These phrases are perhaps an accurate reflection of what non-Autistic people feel about the Autistic person in their life, but they serve to divide rather than unite and ultimately serve none of us. Be suspicious of anyone who says they know what causes autism or how to “treat” it.

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