“Aspergers syndrome” is a hot topic on autistic social media right now. There are some vicious battles raging about this.
How autism and the specific profiles within the spectrum are diagnosed has been and still is evolving over the years, and differently in different countries. The DSM5 is US-specific.
I’m in the UK, and my diagnostic assessment says “Aspergers Syndrome”. The guidelines here now steer away from specific pigeon holes and towards “Autistic Spectrum Disorder”, but not all diagnosticians have caught up.
I know Aspergers just means autism without the learning disabilities and the delayed language development. I know I don’t have the same severity of problems and support needs as my autistic brother, who has learning disabilities. We do have the same rights to be included and supported.
I do have impairments that make my day to day life harder, and medical issues that are part and parcel of autism. I consider it a disability for me, but there are some advantages too, and it makes me who I am. I need acceptance, reasonable adjustments and support. And sometimes medication for co-occurring mental and physical health issues.
It is my prerogative to accept this about myself, and to declare myself disabled. If others don’t see it that way, whether they are neurodiversity-sceptic or positive about their autism, then that’s their prerogative. There is a spectrum of opinions about this, not just polar extremes.
My main point is, I’m sick of all the infighting, and this trolling and dog piling is intolerable and unacceptable. It is making people ill, and in some cases suicidal.
I think the autistic community should pull together, even when we have differing opinions.