The Importance of Autism in the Human Population

Excellent info here! Great post 👏🏼😊

An Intense World

It is not uncommon to think that everyone is, essentially, the same. Certainly there don’t seem to be any significant genetic differences among different groups, particularly those genes involving the brain. But what if there are differences not among different racial/ethnic/cultural groups but, rather, within the human species as a whole?

About 84% of the genes are expressed in the brain. Given that humans have 20,000 genes, that means about 16,800 genes are expressed in the brain.

We should not be surprised, then, if we were to find more than a bit of variation among human brains.

We should expect to see variation in degrees of creativity vs. copying, on liberalism vs. conservatism, on selfish behavior vs. altruism, introversion vs. extroversion, leadership vs. following, variations in thinking styles, degrees of mental energy, I.Q. and flexibility of I.Q., and of course any of a variety of learning…

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Concerning social anxiety and meltdowns…

This is one of the original posts on meltdowns I ever came across!  I helped me so much 👍🏼👍🏼😊💗

One Odd Duck

Recently, in an online group of adult aspies I belong to, meltdowns have been a topic of discussion. This is a very serious aspect of Asperger’s syndrome that can create tremendous social struggles. It is among the reasons some adult aspies fear to leave their homes. With the permission and encouragement of the other members of that group, I’m going to use some of the insights from that discussion, as well as my own experience, to help my readers understand meltdowns and how they relate to the social anxiety so many aspies experience.

I want to begin by defining what a meltdown is. According to Merriam-Webster, the definition that best fits what I am describing is “a breakdown of self-control (as from fatigue or overstimulation).” Notice that it does not reference autism or Asperger’s syndrome. I believe it is possible for anyone to experience a meltdown. As I told a…

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The weird world of executive dysfunction

Lovely post! I can relate so much to this 😊❤️❤️

Silly Goose

Articles like this one have started to click with me in a way that few others do. It has inspired me to do something of a stream-of-consciousness-style ramble on the issue of executive function. Or executive dysfunction.
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I’ve written about my tendency to procrastinate in at least a couple of my blog posts, which from a cursory glance in the wider “blogosphere”, seems to be a trait which is almost fashionable to “fess up to” these days. A specific level of hipster-ironic “I so can’t even right now (but actually I can and in fact have proven that I can merely by writing this article to my huge social media fanbase AND have been paid with my very own by-line on a trendy website like Buzzfeed about how much I like tattoos and drinking tea (and drinking the latest speciality locally grown tattooed tea brewed in a shed in…

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Positively Autistic: A List of (Positive) Autistic Traits

Googling “Asperger’s/autism positive traits” was one of the first things I did when I first suspected I might be on the spectrum, and I’m really glad I did!  This post didn’t exist yet, unfortunately, but it’s even more extensive than the ones I first came across!  I can’t not share this 😄👍🖐🏼💗☮️

So Much Stranger, So Much Darker, So Much Madder, So Much Better

Sometimes it’s hard to feel positive about being autistic when so much of the presentation of autism focuses on our deficits. In a world that tells us all the ways we are “wrong”, I think it’s important to look at the many ways we are awesome.

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New Research Suggests Social Issues are Down to Neurotypicals more than Autistics

Terrific post!  Very informative.  Kinda puts things in perspective. 😊👍🏼💓

Critical Neurodiversity

colorful-brains-560 Picture by Joan M. Mas

Autism is seen, in popular representations, largely as a social and communication disorder. Formerly framed as stemming from an autistic lack of a “social instinct”, the current dominant idea is that something is deficient or missing in autistic social cognition. Often referred to as a cognitive deficit in “empathy” or “theory of mind”, much research on autistic social issues has focused on trying to clarify and detect this inside autistic brains and minds. The search for an elusive broken “theory of mind module” or “empathy mechanism” in the brain, and its ensuing cognitive manifestations, however, has led to conflicting results – with some scientists even concluding that autistic people feel too much empathy rather than too little.

Another view is that this is not simply an individual neuro-cognitive issue, but rather a wider social problem. Against the idea that autistic people have too much or…

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Inclusive autistic traits

This is probably the clearest, most comprehensive, easiest-to-understand list of traits I have ever seen!  Amazing post! 👏👏👏😊❤️

autisticality

Problems

Autism is big and messy and confusing, and no-one really understands it. It’s difficult to make a good summary and description of autistic traits, because generally no-one can agree on what autism actually is. But even taking that into account, I’ve never read a satisfactory article or leaflet summarising and describing autistic traits.  Every description I’ve ever read suffered from at least one of these problems:

  • Wrongly weighted. So many descriptions of autism written by neurotypical people focus completely on social traits. Often autism is described as an entirely social thing, and any other differences are considered incidental if they’re mentioned at all.
  • Vague. The “triad of impairments” is the worst offender here. It divides social traits arbitrarily into “interaction”, “communication”, and “imagination”, but there is absolutely no clear distinction between those categories. They’re meaningless and useless divisions that don’t remotely simplify the description, and so they serve no useful purpose…

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