Autism Awareness: An Inside Perspective

By Adam Gruner, Staff Writer

Society likes to put people with different religions, races, genders, ethnicities and disabilities into categorized boxes. April was Autism Awareness month, and ironically, this is exactly how somebody with autism is stereotypically portrayed Therefore, a big question to think about during Autism Awareness month should be, “Am I really as different from someone with autism as I think I am?”

Many people have preconceived notions of what people with autism are like, based on certain widespread stereotypes such as the notion that people with autism are violent and unable to express empathy.
In reality, Autism Awareness month is not only for the severely autistic people whose speaking has been inhibited, but also for the highly functioning, and the intermediately affected. It is a month for anyone along autism spectrum, not just some. It is a month for family and friends of people with autism. It is a month for awareness, not a month for pity.

According to Arizona governor Doug Ducey, Autism Awareness Month provides the opportunity for more research, as well as a better understanding and acceptance of autism spectrum disorder.

Autism can be detrimental to success in society today. According to an article, some of the deficits children with autism include struggle in a lot of social situations, could have a hard time making eye contact, and they could either have difficulty with communication, both verbal and non-verbal. A result of these deficits is that people with autism are often left behind or dismissed as stupid, and that is a huge mistake.

People with autism are intelligent and thoughtful. Instead of being ignored, excluded and discriminated against, people with autism should be put in an environment where their inner genius can be utilised to better the world.

On the other hand, it hasn’t been all positive experiences for me. As someone with autism, I have and continue to have issues with social skills, mainly eye contact, as well as coming off as too blunt when talking to people. Despite understanding social normalities and skills, it can be hard to implement them. Many times people have been scared of me in the past because I came off as cold, emotionless and angry when talking to them. I actually am incredibly emotional and really care about a lot of people, but because I have difficulty in knowing how to show that that side of myself.

While autism is something that has presented me with many challenges in my life, it is still a part of me.

During this month, people with autism don’t want pity; we want equality.