Saturday, September 29, 2007

Has autism or autistic

In light of talking to a lot of people....I hear the words interchangeable...what do you prefer? A doctor yesterday told a person on the team they prefer to say their patients have autism...meaning the person comes before the disorder.
At the same time, a lot of mothers I have talked to call their child autistic....I think for the series we will refer to people as having autism....
What do you think?

4 comments:

P Rusk said...

'Person' or 'People First' language is an important step in recognizing the child (or adult) first - before the disorder. It's an easy thing to do - to say 'autistic'... because it's been so accepted for so long to recognize the disability before the person. It's important to note that using Person First language is the most repectful way to refer to people who have challenges of any type.

There is a counter-culture, though, who are adamant that they call themselves 'autistic'. I respect this - it is their choice. But, I truly feel we should expect those who care for, discuss, investigate, evaluate and educate our children (as well as adults) to use respectful language when referring to our children.

dyslexic angeleno said...

By way of comparison, as a dyslexic, I (obviously) prefer to be termed "dyslexic". To be referred to as "a person with dyslexia" feels a tad medicalized and slightly pejorative or something.

Jacinda said...

I am a woman, not a "person with femaleness". I am a lesbian, not a "person with homosexuality". I am an autistic, not a "person with autism".

Try not to make too many assumptions about what's respectful.

christschool said...

As an autistic man, I am not a man with autism. Other people don't have a right to refer to another group of people anyway they like. In racial terms, that would be racist. In disability terms, that would be disablism. Ask Autistic people!