Skip to content

Tag: personal

Autistic Police

‘The uniform and the rules attract autistic people to join the police‘ BBC April 1, 2018 Law enforcement attracts people who are on the spectrum,” he says. “They like the uniform – you get to wear the same thing every day. And you get to enforce the rules. Hopefully this is not an April Fool’s joke. A friend recently asked me if I had ever considered joining the military? This article is along the same lines. My brain does not suffer fools gladly, nor does it accept easily the performance of tasks for no reason. The regimented life of the military, and to a lesser extent, the police, may appeal to some on the autism spectrum. For me, it would be a constant fight to justify in my own mind the rules and the exceptions that both services would impose. I was an EMT for about 14 years. While it was difficult, the practice in New York State was ideal for me. The evaluation of a patient was scripted, and the treatments that I could provide were detailed. I rarely received a post-call compliment for my care, compassion, and concern but I got the job done. Now, I will say this. When given clear instruction, I am very good at following it. That is not necessarily a good thing as the defendants at Nuremberg discovered. I have always sought praise and validation from superiors. It’s part of a schema from my childhood. I follow orders if I can understand them.…

Comments closed

How I Came to Be Autistic

I was diagnosed as being on the autism spectrum at the age of 59. I was recovering from my first major depressive episode and my personal physician and my therapist both thought that I may be autistic, on the spectrum as what was once called Aspergers. I was sent for testing. That consisted of a number of interviews by a psychologist. My younger sister was also interviewed about my early childhood, behaviors and experiences. They would have interviewed my parents had either been alive at that point. I took a multiple choice test consisting of 350 or so questions. Some made no sense, others went to the heart of social or employment issues. In the end, the multi-page report concluded that I was on the spectrum. What did that mean for me? Since then, the last three years, I have been working to identify those behaviors that are hardwired, autistic. I have had another major depressive episode, far more severe. Most of the adaptations that I used to keep my emotions under control have vanished. I have begun stimming, and had several meltdowns. It sounds bad. It is not. It is all part of the process of learning who I am, what my strengths and weaknesses are, and how I react to the world around me. The diagnosis was like getting a new beginning, a rebirth. I’m, in essence, three years old in many ways. I am looking forward to the next twenty years. Let’s see what the new and…

Comments closed

What Is Autism to Me

In the sidebar, under the I Have Questions topic is a page with some “official” definitions of autism. The problem is, to me, that defining the medical condition seems to require a permanent label for the patient. And, labels are limited as a description. There are two primary schools of thought with respect to autism. Many people see it as a disability, a disaster for the patient and their family, and requiring “curing” and determination of a cause. Many adults on the spectrum, including me, would disagree strongly. Autism is a condition based upon a different “wiring” in the human brain. Some abilities and traits are enhanced while others are altered, changed from “normal”. We’re just not typical humans. What is wrong with being atypical? Should autistics be forced into behaviors that they are not wired to perform with ease? Children on the autism spectrum, with a loving family and wise professional care, can grow up to be adults with abilities and talents, can hold jobs, and have a social life. Their life may not appear to be mainstream, or “normal”, but they are happy, productive, valuable members of a diverse society.

Comments closed