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Category Archives: Perspectives

This category contains personal stories by Autistic individuals. Other categories, along with past entries sorted by date and tag, can be accessed via the sitemap.

On Both Sides of the Desk

Trigger/content warning: An ableist slur (the R word) is used in a quote within this post. My name is Reyma McCoy McDeid. I’m the executive director of Central Iowa Center for Independent Living in Des Moines, Iowa. The bulk of my career and education has been in the provision...

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No Quiet Waters

Growing up with parents who were immigrants from Africa to the United States, I heard a lot of proverbs. I liked many of them, but there were some that I, an autistic child with a very literal mind, simply could not understand. One of those was a proverb that...

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ASAN Testimony on Assisted Suicide

I write as Director of Public Policy of the Autistic Self Advocacy Network (ASAN), and a member of the Board of Not Dead Yet, to oppose the Death with Dignity Act. Physician-assisted suicide legislation endangers people with disabilities, including disabilities resultIng from illness. Supporters frequently focus on the “indignity” of needing help...

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It’s Here! Loud Hands: Autistic People, Speaking on Amazon!

It’s here! A little less than a year since we started, the Loud Hands Project is proud to unveil our first anthology: Loud Hands: Autistic People, Speaking, now available on Amazon. This is an exciting time for the Loud Hands Project, and we want to share it with you....

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Calling People the R word

by Alyssa Trigger Warning: R-slur as an insult, discussion of such (censored except in quotations and in a screen shot.) This is how we begin, sort of: I say sort of because this isn’t really a beginning, it’s a reflection. It’s a reflection of what we as a society...

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What I need and want

Alicia Lile says: I want to be loved and accepted. I wish others to tell me that it’s wonderful that I was born. I feel guilty of existing, tell me I am wrong....

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Big Trucks and the Work that Needs Doing

An essay by Mark Stairwalt. Years ago, before the coming of the cell phone, I was the driver of a Freightliner FLD 120, an imposing, long-nosed boat of a semi tractor that crisscrossed the United States and parts of Canada with a 53-foot trailer in tow. Never mind that...

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Thoughts from the Food Pantry

By mid-October, I found myself going to the local food pantry. The last time I'd been there was between the endless succession of jobs won and lost, when I couldn't pinch another penny and the food money ran low. This time I was there because I wanted to volunteer....

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My middle name

An essay by Melanie Yergeau. The map is new, and I know it all. I hop from one painted state to the next, reciting each capital, each state bird, each state nickname, each state flower, each state population as of 1989, the year imprinted on the spines of my...

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Normal Is Just A Setting On A Washing Machine

An essay by Kate Goldfield: At recess, I would sit outside on the cold, hard ground reading a book. When I did bravely venture out to the playground to go on my beloved swings, it was never with a friend. I felt like I existed in a different world...

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