THE WORD “AUTISTIC”

This, like a lot of my other posts, is going to be very personal and very opinionated. Keep in mind, these are my opinions and MINE ALONE! Today’s topic is the word “Autistic”. More specifically, what I personally feel about that word. Get ready for some controversy. I personally do not have that much of an issue with the word “Autistic”. Emphasis on the words “that much”. I’m going to get to that in a minute. As an individual on the Autism Spectrum, I “label” and consider myself as Autistic. It’s just how I identify. NOW having said that, I do have a *slight* issue with the word. It’s an insulting term when used that way. I feel the word Autistic is, in and of itself, a label. Now it’s not as harsh as “retarded” or something along those lines. But it can still be callus and hurtful. Example: “Oh, he/she is just Autistic.” It is almost derogatory. But on the other side of things, it is a legitimate medical diagnosis. I personally hate when I hear the term so-and-so “suffers” from Autism. I do not want to talk for the entire Autism community, so I’ll just stick to me. I personally feel I do not “suffer” from being Autistic. I feel I am “blessed” with Autism. And yes, I understand it might be tough or hard for families of an individual on the Spectrum. But I’ve said it before and I will say it again: Autism is NOT a death sentence! I have never once heard a medical professional say “I’m so sorry. You have Autism. You have 2 weeks to live.” It doesn’t work that way. To me, to wrap this up, the word Autistic is a double-edged sword. I personally do not take too much offense with it, but I know one or two other people who detest the word. To me, that is interesting. How one word can have so many different meanings to so many different people. Words are just that…words. People are what give them meaning and power. So what do you think? What is your opinion on the word “Autistic”? Is it callus and offensive? Or is it a way of life? Or something else entirely? Let me know in the comments and thanks for reading!

-Tom

Author: AuTom Spectrum Blog

I have Autism and am a self-advocate and public speaker. On the side I do stand-up comedy. I live in Baltimore County and have an AMAZING girlfriend

One thought on “THE WORD “AUTISTIC””

  1. I say that I am a person with Autism. That is just how I identify myself. Everyone is so different with Autism. We all identify ourselves in a different way.

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