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Wednesday, August 1, 2012

It's a matter of perspective

Josh and I have been rather hopeful about a new crime drama that has been on TNT lately. Perception stars Eric McCormack as Dr. Daniel Pierce. A brilliant neuro-scientist who helps the FBI solve complex crimes with his unique perspective and insight on people. Oh and he's also schizophrenic...just thought I should add that in.

I have many mixed feelings about this crime drama but it looks like a good foot in the right direction. However, just because you're going the right way doesn't mean you won't get lost. I suppose this essay is kind of a review on the show but not an accurate one since I have only seen the first episode. It's also dissection on the perspective of having a dual sword of a disability and a talent.

The show is something I want to bring up to parallel what is going in the James Holmes case. There is discussions that he had a psychotic break and is diagnosed with schizophrenia. Not sure if the latter is true however and I did mention my irritation on the lie that schizophrenics are always crazed killers and the denial of the fact they are more likely the victims. Yet the show takes on many of the similar tropes I have seen before. One of them is the "disability superpower" trope. I don't know if it frustrates me or rather fascinates me that his visual hallucinations are the manifestation his subconscious telling him how to solve the crime. Could it be possible for a schizophrenic to have dissociative consciousness that whatever it takes it in, it comes out garbled and skewed? Possibly, it's very likely that most hallucinations cause by different neurowiring is simply a scrambling of what is understood and perceived. But the whole idea that his hallucinations manifest to help him use his active consciousness to solve the crime doesn't sit well with me (example of this is during the episode one of the suspects gets nervous when he sees Dr Pierce he later visits the doctor saying that he is going crazy and killed someone and wants Dr. Pierce to help him. Turns out it's a hallucination that is a clue to what is going in the case). I can't buy it for some reason, hallucinations don't always manifest like that, some are just plain nonsensical (the one my friend J had are pretty damn surreal). Maybe that is why Dr. Pierce is brilliant, maybe his brilliance is because of his schizophrenia. Or is it the other way around, maybe is born brilliant and his brain schisms causing the schizophrenic symptoms?

Perhaps this is the thesis of the essay. Am I good storytelling because I am an autist who sees things in different shades? Or am I an autist that uses stories as an accommodation to communicate? It's a chicken/egg question indeed and one that needs exploration. I have high hopes for a show that works to move pass the tropes and cliches of schizo-typal people. Who has a neurodiverse hero that treasures his neurodiversity and truly recognizes it. It's good to see folks taking that bent on disability than making it "teaching lesson" for the able-bodied.

Friday, July 27, 2012

Here we go again

With another shooting in the news the same usual suspects show up and without much ado, the Mental Illness and Developmental Disability community, pretty much gets bulldozed and scapegoated. Just like clockwork. I dread hearing about these dreadful shootings (not just because they are incredibly tragic), because once again we're the face of evil and violence. In weeks time schizophrenics, bi-polar and autistic adults (and teens) will be in the front pages of news blogs with tragic reports of there "aggressive" behavior and how were "time bombs" etc etc. Same song, same dance. It happened with the Virgina Tech massacre it happened with Columbine too, and now with the horrific Aurora Cinema shooting it seems that people keep conflicting Criminal Minds with real life.

Joe Scarborough said some pretty ignorant statements in regards to the shooting, and he got told off for them fortunately, but this just a slow change. Especially since Joe kinda missed the point. And to be a bit cynical here, people are going to continue to miss the point since this is always been sort of a hard lesson to learn. People with mental illnesses are not your killers. People with schizophrenic disorders, bi-polar, OCD, DID, Borderline are not your boogieman. Kassianne made clear point on this complete with stats on the real facts that we're the victims than the victimizers. In fact I have been hearing more frequently about the deaths of autistics lately. Yet still people continue to paint us as organic robots with no feelings or social awareness. I don't understand how hard it is for people to grasp that it's more likely that my neurtypical readers are going to to murder me or my neurotypical siblings than the other way around. Hell I should start profiling all the normies on my blog for Odin's sake.

I know what your people are like...

Sound of Rain (Fiction)

I wrote this back in April.


Sound of Rain
C. Kramer

Hands against the foggy glass, Ian looks out watching the drips cascade down the bay window in his apartment. Slowly falling, the rain makes the sandy hair boy laugh as lightening dances in the surly clouds. He pulls away flapping his hands and rubs them on his face. A celebration of some sort, one that his lover never truly understood but empathizes in a way. Ian flapped again bouncing on his toes, swaying to the rolling roar of the thunder. A May storm always gives him such delight. A fixation that Mattie let him indulge him in once in a while; ridged schedules, planning things in advance, and a life of routine left their lives little room for things like spontaneity. Mattie couldn’t always go parties he was invited too, he left work early sometimes to deal with incidents. His life has been route and organized. All to keep Ian at peace in a sea of noise and faces, if one thing goes out of balance. There was chaos.

And people do ask: “Why do you even bother?”

The answer wasn’t simply “because I love him”, though that is part of the answer. For Matthias Shepard, life was as sea of noises and faces too. There was no reprieve for him; he went through life feeling though the ocean of emotions and thoughts constantly drowning in them. Every day, he was drowning and on one cold January evening, that is when he found an island. Ian Farthing was that island. A man who spent his life living with siblings, parents and at one point in a men’s home; never really having a place of belonging. He was a burden to some, a liability to others, but Mattie saw him differently. Telepathy with a secondary talent of empathic awareness, are heavy weights to wear. And since people never shield, he was always privy their intents, to their feelings, to their secrets. It was maddening for Mattie. Ian being autistic was relief from that. His mind functions so differently that picking up emotions was foggy and hard to pin point and telepathy was equally hard. His thoughts were various word-pictures, sounds, smells. They were in differently complex patterns that are hard to cipher though. It was perfect peace. He wasn’t open and naked like the others. He wasn’t a pulsing mass of ethos. Finally Mattie found someone that he could truly get to know, talk to, and discover.

Ian found peace with Mattie. Shoved aside by family members who saw him as a non-person; Ian found himself with little control over his life. It wasn’t until his sister Jane saw his landscapes, and then people started to care. Not about him, of course not. Just of what he could produce. Rich and vibrant fields, busy streets and stormy evenings; the latter is his favorite. Watercolor was his medium of choice and spent many of his days holed up in his room painting. Only eating when made to and only leaving the room when he had to piss. Ian spoke to his sister in the same short clipped voice explaining in great detail what he trying to say in his paintings. He went on about techniques and new methods, watercolor vs. gouache and things that Jane couldn’t give a damn about. But he made money. And greed was strong in her. So against his own needs, she made him do tours, sell in pricy galleries and showcases, dragging him around like a dancing poodle. It was that January when Ian was showing his watercolor paintings in gallery opening, the one that Mattie was at.

Swaying side to side, Mattie found a shaggy hair main with wide rectangular glasses staring at a painting of a sunset from a roof top. Mattie was drawn to him, while trying to escape the environmental noise and the psychic noise too. It was quiet where Ian was. Surprised, Mattie stood next to him. Pushing back his long black hair he took a sip of the chardonnay and started a conversation.
                “Nice contrast, I like how the red bleeds like that against the start black.”
                “Oh.  Thank you. Took me months to get that,” responded the swaying man.
                “You’re the artist? You’re Ian Farthing?” Mattie raised an eyebrow and turned to Ian with a fascinated look he is so….silent. I can’t pick out any outward resonance from him. It’s like he turned off or damped his emotions. I can’t pick them up. Mattie offered his hand to Ian, a smile forming on his tanned face.
                “Matthias Shepard, it is an honor to meet the talent behind these paintings.” Ian carefully shook his hand. Mattie’s hand swallowed the clammy artist’s, and he had to actually concentrate for once to pick up a resonance. He hates it here, he doesn’t want to be here I get those emotions, but his thoughts there are, images, some are words…but I can’t translate them right away. This…this is incredible. He’s a Dampener. Those are hard to find. Shaking his hand for a moment, Mattie turned back to the painting.
                “Does it mean anything?” he asked, Ian’s response was simple:
                “It was just a practice piece using some new tubes, but I guess people can stick whatever meaning they want to it.”
                “It looks…somber almost. Like there is a kind of dinginess to it, but seriously; what does it mean to you?
                “It’s isolation. Feeling of being cut out from society. The roof has nothing on it, it’s bare and void and sun as its setting casting a glow to it; almost if it’s judging it.”
                “Do people judge you Ian?”
                Ian looked at Mattie with a hurt look, “Of course. I am autistic. Of course they judge.” Mattie was going to probe deeper when a stern blonde woman walked up to them. She ushered Ian way saying that some folks wanted to buy a piece from him. Mattie looked at the title of the painting that they were discussing. It was entitled: Scathing Glare.

The months that followed ebbed and flowed. Mattie spent evenings visiting Ian, at his studio. Bringing meals to him when he forgot eat. Watching him paint and the conversations dripped down like steady rain. Mattie explained to him that he was only child, and grew up rather sheltered. It was only when he hit middle school things began to change. His psychic powers manifested and nothing was ever the same after that. Ian seemed interested about it. He has met some “psychics” in his life. Most of them were just empaths that were good at cold reading. True telepaths were hard to come by and meeting one for real, was quite an opportunity. Ian started to feel a strong connection to Mattie after spending several evenings, and afternoons with him. He started to take more breaks from paintings and started visiting him at his clinic where he practiced. He made an effort more to try new things and slowly Mattie watched him come out of his shell. He was vibrant and exuberant about everything. Paintings of Ian had richness that Mattie noticed more. Real happiness, and as the months that followed from carefully nurturing the relationship that they have sowed together, the happiness flourished.

Getting Ian off of Jane’s hands however was not simple as Mattie thought. Before Ian moved in, Jane struggled to keep Ian for herself afraid her little hen will not lay any golden eggs for her. Yet Ian convinced her that he can give her some of his money he made from commissions and galleries to her once a month. Deal placated her, and without that complication, Mattie and Ian can begin their lives together.

It wasn’t always perfect. Mattie knew what was he was getting into with having a relationship with an autistic. The beds have to be always made or Ian will rant and be surly for hours. If they were late for a gallery show or a meeting or anything, Ian will panic. Mattie was patient and rational but even his own patience was tried when they got into spats. Mostly out of miscommunication than malice. Explaining things over and over was exhausting. Still despite the rough spots in their relationship. Things sometimes seamlessly flow together. Ian was tirelessly observant, Mattie often comes home late and dinner would be prepared for him. Small paintings of flowers and fresh fruit will be in his briefcase and the simple peace of them just together in the apartment was fact enough on how much it was worth it. Living with Ian took effort but all good things take effort.

In Ian’s case, Mattie was also a challenge. Like autistic symptoms, psychic powers also have its set of inferences. Ian can tolerate crowds as he was use to them in the gallery parties. Mattie can only tolerate them for an hour or so, before he started to break down and hide to escape the constant sea of resonance. Movie theaters were out of the question. Mattie had a hard time eating out too. Because even the food has resonance and nothing killed the mood more than trying to eat a steak with the sound of mooing and the crackle of static from a stun gun(One of the reasons Mattie often went vegetarian). So it goes without saying that eating out was once in a while and only if Mattie wards from various resonances and impressions. When Ian had enough of people and the mask of “normalcy” falls off; he shuts down, rocking back and forth and hands over his eyes. He will scream and try to run away. When Mattie gets over loaded, he gets violent. He made damn sure never to show that side to Ian. Until one afternoon…

It was another gallery show outside of town at someone’s property. It was warm and bright and Ian was more involved with the guests than use to be. Shaking hands and showing them some of his new pieces. Mattie was oddly more worn that day. Quiet as he followed his lover behind him watching with proud but tired expression on his face; happy to see him so social for once. He took a beer from the cooler and walked outside to get a break from the party and drank on lawn he found himself wandering to an area outside of the man celebration when felt a wave of psychic energy. He furrowed his brow as he touched a hammer that lay in the grass next to a tree stump. A sick feeling welled up in Mattie as he rolled his eyes back seeing an image two men beating the shit out of another man. Words and slurs were being thrown around muddled with the hazy image. Mattie choked back his nausea as the boy who was probably gay was beaten by two men, high school age. Dropping the hammer Mattie staggered back, beer left in grass by the weapon. He had no idea if the boy lived, or not. He didn’t stick around to find out. His own mask dropped off as he stormed to the car not noticing that Ian was behind him. His grey eyes filled with concern.
                “Mattie? What is wrong, you lo-“Mattie whirled around to strike whomever was behind him, but Ian caught his fist. Grey eyes now filled with deeper concern. “What the fuck happened? What did you see or pick up?”
                “Back off Ian, I just need space.”
                “No you’re going to calm down first. You’re seething, what happened?” Ian was insistent and didn’t let go of Mattie. Both of them looked back for a second before getting into the Jetta.
                “I picked up something in the back of the place, some kid got beat to shit.” Mattie admitted rubbing his face.  “We need to go now. We can’t be here.”
                “Do you want to tell the police or something?” Ian tried to help.               
                “No I just want to fucking go! I am tired to death of being here.” Snapped Mattie
                “Mattie we can-“ Mattie fell into the resonance loosing himself to the impressions he found. Everything feel away from him nothing was stable or real anymore as he found himself looking into the eyes of the boy that was beaten, Ian didn’t even finished his sentence when Mattie let out a deluge of words anger flavored them like hot sauce. Ian couldn’t process them fast enough but without thinking, he grabbed Mattie’s shoulders and forced him to look at him.
                “Stop! Breathe. Now. Push back the onslaught. I am gonna talk to the host, I am gonna get to the bottom of this. We will go home, get out of the ocean Mattie you will drown.” Ian solid words, and own dampening ability stopped the resonance from continuing. Mattie took a breath and managed to put himself back together.
                “Right you do that Ian. I am going to chill out here for a while ok?” Mattie said wearily as Ian slowly got out of the car and walked back to the house. Mattie rubbed his face as tried to hold on his mind. He needed Ian more than Ian realized.

Bringing himself out of that memory he watched Ian rocked to the sound of rain and heavy thunder. Mattie got up from his seat in the living room and put down his laptop. Coffee in one hand and idea in his head he got Ian’s attention.
                “Hey, Ian c’mere.” He said as he put his coffee down. Ian laughed and joined him in his favorite chair looking outside the window, still engaged to the conversation.
                “Something on your mind?”
                “Yeah Ian” there was a pause, “what do you think about the phrase ‘high functioning’?”
                “It makes no sense honestly, but in what context?”
                “What about in the autistic sense?” asked Ian sipping his coffee letting the mellow flavor relax him as Ian took his time thinking.
                “I still think it makes no sense. I am only considered high functioning because I can talk, but most folks look at us and they don’t see a gay couple. Most people think you’re my brother and get shocked when I kiss you in public. Rest of the word sees me as, semi-functioning or something. They notice my disability and see it as a flaw. You’re not even high functioning at all and they call your disability a god-damn gift.” Ian rambled.
                “You don’t think I am ‘high functioning’?” laughed Mattie.
                “Generally, you can pass. But I know you struggle daily to keep from falling into whatever resonances or psychic entropy you find. You get sick and you tire easily. I take care of you more than you take care of me Mattie. I mean. I don’t want to seem like I am complaining. This is just my-“
                “Observation, I know,” finished Mattie, “I know you’re not trying to be hurtful. So many people see the relationship as one sided. Some even think I am taking advantage of you, but you’re right Ian. It’s the other way around. Sometimes you get lost in environment yourself. Sound drowns you but you always manage to bring yourself out of it. If I start to drown, I can’t seem to pull myself out.” Mattie drank his coffee quiet now.
                “The sounds of rain Mattie, people hear the rain and are calmed by it. But when I hear it I am driven. I want to rock, flap, dance, spin in circles. We all respond to the world differently. I don’t think that means you’re a high functioning psychic or low functioning one. It means you respond to the sound of rain differently. I can’t tell you how to dance to it. But one day, you will find your rhythm to it.”


Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Does this Unit have a Soul?

One of my more recent addictions lately has been lately the Mass Effect Trilogy that you can play on Xbox. It follows a very "choose your own" adventure sort of story where your choices do have certain consequences (Before anyone starts I don't want wank about the ending), it's enticing to me as I play through discovering planets, aliens and re-discovering a genre that I love but don't find a lot of good material on it, "Space Opera".

In the first game the big bad was a race of sentient machines called the geth. For the player they are simply crazy robots bent on destroying everything. In the second game we meet a character called Legion who explains a bit about the geth and their perspective on things as well as their view point on why the rose up against their creators the Quarians.

We have seen this song and dance before. This is an old trope done before, where machines fight against their masters and we must destroy them before they kill everything. In some cases with androids or robots, the Velveteen Rabbit trope is used to make them more approachable to humans. Over all this is nothing new and it borders on cliche even. But the whole idea of Legion recalling the memories of many geth that he stores and explains the situation in his perspective is kind fascinating and something I look forward too when I get to that part of the plot.

The reason I bring this up is because androids and robots seem parallel autistics in a sense. Writers use similar tropes to portray us. The "Autistic Killer" echos a bit of about a crazed machine that goes haywire and snaps and kills it's masters. The love of a NT woman to normalize and Autistic man is another echo on the idea the love of a human woman can give humanity to a machine. Autistics have been used lately to be the new "android" metaphor, it's common in films like Adam and books like House Rules that the autistic is used to be a figure for something that is uncanny and not truly human. It's the idea that autistics are so familiar or so foreign or so tragic that they are more like robots than people. The reader gets to know the autistic as outsider or Other. NT writers tend to write autistics as tragic context that needs a happy result for the story to be complete. Other times they come off as plot furniture. This is nothing new or needs repeating, we all know this from various books.

What I am getting at is like the geth writing it's own story without the outside perspective of the Quarians; autistics tend to do the same thing. I find more autistics writing their own novels and stories in their perspective. Their narratives and fiction have more power than the ones written by NTs, because their narratives are from their own collective, their own context. Not one made from guesses or ideas on how autistic should be but rather what they really are. This is interesting to watch as autistics are starting to craft their stories. Regardless of what the rest of community might scoff or say; we are the archivers of our own mythology.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

More Than This

I haven't been avoiding this blog....I just have been uninspired

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Saviors and Sinners

I haven't been posting a lot lately mostly because I just felt so out of it (FTR I have LJ too that has been neglected as well) and posting hasn't been on my priority list. Well to change that I decided I wanted to put forth a recant of a topic that I like talking about.

-Writing autistic characters

I state this topic a lot, but I approaching this from another side. A side that has been touched a lot but I never really discussed it; and that is writing from the perspective of an non-aut parent. Writers do it a lot to the point of creating a bizarre schism between the main perspective and the alternating one. It's seen with 'House Rules' mostly and even with 'With the Light' there is the same parallel POVs. One reason this happens is because the writer (NT mostly) envisions that that autistic view point is so alien that the reader will never understand and we need an NT guide (the parent) to make sense of it or to have it as the main view point because we certaintly can't focus it on the autistic.

This is frustrating as an autistic person, because while parent focused stories are awesome and full of jazz, the autistic POV stories are few to none, and if done, often have 'translator' character to help the reader. Autistic characters are different to write yes, but they are not impossible to empathize and connect. I got a lot of push-back and arguing from beta readers and ex-RP partners that couldn't relate to Tikaani. I would take it seriously if I didn't work my ass off to make sure Tikaani could be approachable to NT readers. The thing is though I didn't have to make him approachable to NTs at all, I could make him a character for autists alone and tell all the NTs to GTFO. The thing is I wanted Tikaani (and at one point Wilson another autistic character of mine) to be teaching character. To be a reference point for readers, if they can befriend and connect to a fictional character. Maybe connecting to a real autist wouldn't be so tricky.

The deal is that people find it tricky. Enough that most autism narratives (fictional ones and non fic) are all done with parents. Writers never consider the autistic perspective unless they want a "exotic" and "foreign" viewpoint. Autists are never normalize or seen as regular people. They are done either to be "sooo straaaange" or be a character obstacle for the parent to defeat. It's is done time and time again in media. What is really haunting about this. Is that in real life a similar effect is also happen. If I am a non-autistic parent raising an autist. I will get a lot of readers and support. As an autist myself with his blog, non aut readers like to read my blog to 'gawk' or say how 'brave' and 'inspiring' I am. Parents will bring up their kids and compare them to me. In fact in many circles, autistic children have been used as "street cred" measuring sticks. I have seen parents time and time again use their own kids and compare them to an autistic adult to validate adult's DX (Well you seeeeem like my son so you must be on the spectrum) it's mind boggling but common.

The point of this is bring up a fact. Autisitc perspectives in fiction are not "weird" or alien. Writing them and making them relatable is not hard. It says a lot about a culture when and about you, you think you can't relate to me because of my DX.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Kids are not all right

Sunday night I got overloaded badly during CID (LARP I play on Sundays). Wet clothing topped off with too much people sent me into meltdown/shutdown mode. Josh was there playing "aid" as he took me to a secluded booth away from the game area. People had to specifically look for us. Despite the game site being a bar the the spot I was in with Josh was relatively quiet. At that point I had a lot of SIBs and Josh (with my EXPRESSED consent) was keeping me from hitting myself. I was utterly silent for once and just squeezed and let me fall apart.

Then Ryan showed the fuck up. A fellow gamer, that knows I am on the spectrum. He thought it was a good time to berate me and Josh who was hold me tight to keep me from smashing my face on the table. He was an utter ass about it ("This not daycare." "Take that shit outside") and did not GTFO when Josh told him too (I couldn't speak) when finally left...that's when the tears came. We left game early and went home. I never seen Josh so infuriated he actually wanted to hurt someone.

The entire situation left me with a bad taste in my mouth. I marathon game a lot. I play four hours of one game and then do another four. Maybe I should cut down marathon, but despite that the entire situation is why education is important and why it honestly sucks to pass most of the time. Even when you cry for help, people tend to ignore it or down play it.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Gesturing Loudly

Today was my first ASL lesson at the Stonewall Center in Columbus. I have always been interesting in learning a new language, but I have some trouble learning verbal languages as I can't process aural information easily. I could do Latin, but it was less complex than say....learning Welsh (damn those dipthongs) so I want to try to learn ASL. For many reasons, one was to converse with non-speaking people that might rely on ASL as a form of AAC another was to converse with Deaf people and learn about another culture.

Also I want to talk to my friend Jay in his language most importantly.

Perhaps those are all shitty reasons in wanting to learn sign language, but wanting to understand another culture and another perspective is why NTs often interact with autsitics and maybe that is why they struggle.

I've talked to Jay before through text conversations about disability having a disability (Deaf people don't believe to be disabled) and living in a world not quite meant for us. I have had some interesting questions from him. He works with the DD community as a caregiver so when he found out that I was autistic he was curious. He asked me:
What is your functioning level? You are not severe?
I responded back (ignoring how fucking invasive that question is)
It's complex. I have good days when I can understand what is going on and I pass as a typical person well. Then I have days when I am like "rainman" Most of the time I can pass as typical. I have to. It's over whelming and tiring.
It's interesting when I talked to him. I saw a lot of parallels with Deaf culture and the sprouting autistic culture. He empathized with me, I saw in his eyes was we talked on a sheet of paper in the coffee house one Wednesday. I really understand Jay sometimes. I am not Deaf, but I get the fact that Hearing people are just as self involved and arrogant as NTs. I get the frustration of communicating to some one that doesn't see your language as a real language. I get it. I want to get it at least. I feel so unsure around Jay and other Deaf people. I don't want to be "that guy" you know, the allies that I rant about on my blog. But I really connect with Jay. I want to continue the friendship I have with him.

But maybe this is why I am writing this post. I live in a culture that has been scattered to the four winds. We don't have a collective language to exchange ideas and thoughts with. What we have a common feeling of oppression and exclusion. What is Autistic Culture? Is the question I am asking? It's something that I have been thinking about lately as I find myself walking into the Deaf community.

Friday, January 13, 2012

Nerds in the bedroom NSFW

Or dating as an autist

So for January's blog post I had idea to write about something that has been on my mind lately. Yes I know what your are thinking, but trust me on this guys, this image, is a metaphor.

With a buzz going around about John Elder Robinson, new book "Be Different : The adventures of a free-rang Aspergian" which is basically comes down to: "don't be an autist be normal and shit and maybe you'll get pussy." Which is what most of the reviews seem to articulate. I wanted to put in my two cents with dating an being autistic. I want to share a few stories and share some really personal stuff.

So most of this post is gonna be kinda NSFW

One thing that I keep hearing among the community both the parent dominated "Autism community" and the autist lead "Autistic community" is the anxiety of relationships. Because most autists are cis male, most of the discussion of dating has been geared to that side of the experience. I rarely see any dating guides geared towards female autists or transgender autists. Hell, even most of the dating guides are for hetronormative relationships. I don't see people giving advice to gay men or lesbian women. From what I see with questions about people looking for girl friends on AFF or the various dialogues about parents sadden that their sons can't have typical families or whatever that means. It's apparent that us trannies, fags and cunts don't exist.

Fortunately there is this explaining the "Double Rainbow" phenomenon and touching some important intersectionality concepts. Including being queer and autistic, trans and autistic and agender/asexual and autistic. Which are topics that are almost always cut out of the discussion. As well as Autists in the kink community (another topic that never is talked about because of the context of "kink). There is a lot of topics about relationships sex and gender that are never touch because of our culture's social taboo with sex as well as another taboo. People with developmental delays/disabilities shouldn't have sex. It's something that has been asserted in media and made a joke off. The problem is that this joke is doing more harm than good and it's time realize that autistic can have healthy meaningful relationships with love ones and yes. Have sex. Lots of sex. Consentual. Adult. Sex.

Did I mention sex?

Yes their are autistics that are asexual, I have plenty of autist friends that are aromantic and asexual. That is not what I am pissed off at. They are asexual by their own merit. I don't want to say "chose" because no one chooses anything (I didn't chose to be a gay trans man), however there are asexual NTs too. The autists I know that asexual are not because they are autistic. But because that happens to be their flavor of the "rainbow." Media always inputs that an if there is an autist in any relationship, their relationship is cute and platonic and if it's sexual it's quirky and awkward an that they are a virgin (See Adam). You want to know a fact. Some autists like a rough, some like it dirty. Some like kink, some have fetishes, some are not virgins and some...are perfectly vanilla and guess what? All of them are ok, and natural. Problem is that people don't assume autistics have normal sex lives. They either group us as asexual to avoid the topic or the imagery or they make us perverts. Let us not even go into the idea that non-speaking autists are all "children" and can't consent. Because we know that is bullshit.

I am sure you can program the dynavox to say "Lets fuck like rabbits". I am sure it's been done before.

But back on a serious note. Dating is a complicated manner. I have been abused by my ex husband, abused by my former suitors and while I am going through transitioning I have been less confident in my abilities on attracting a mate. Josh ended up being a breath of fresh air. He has been loving, supportive and flexible. We do fight, argue but we make up and try to learn. He is also an autist too and like myself. There has been some communication gaps. No relationship is perfect, but we manage to sync up. Also, something else I discovered. I don't have sex with Josh...we make love. A phrase I had not much credence too. Yet after the almost nine months in our relationship, I get it now. I know what it means now. It took me a long time but, I had something I never had with my ex; something I guess I am lucky to experience.

Now remember the lube I have on the top of the essay? It is a metaphor. Relationships often have a lot of friction and complications. Teamwork, context and communication can help lubricate it. And you know what? Autists can learn it.

To finish up I want to bring something up. I am sick of the idea that NT women date aspie men because they want to fix them or find their quirkiness "cute". I feel that NT women either negate their disability or exacerbate it. Then if it fails, they are the victims. Maxine Aston often pulls this bullshit (remember the Cassandra Syndrome bull?). Aspie men are not fixer-upers. They are not children looking for a mom. Aspie women are not delicate virgins or on the other side of the table, not butch geeks with motorcycles with a devil-may-care attitude like Lizbeth Salander (I hear a rumor that she might be portrayed as asperger on the movie) or dorky animu weeboos either.

This is probably a news flash for some. But autistics are people. Human, and fallible. We have preferences, identities and needs like normal people would in relationships. We might need guidance and some help sometimes, but we can function in a relationships.