There’s a term I’ve learned from other aspies (I highly recommend Jason Hague’s blog and Thautcast, which is on my blogroll to the right of your screen). It’s “Curebie”. A Curebie is someone who thinks autism should be cured.
If you were to ask me if I”d like to be “cured” of my autism, I’d probably say “Sure, and while we’re at it, cut off my left hand.” You see, I’m left-handed. If I were to lose my left hand, I’d be unable to feed myself or do many other things. Sure, I could relearn and build up the strength in my right hand, but it’d be difficult if not impossible.
Yes, I understand that there are different degrees of severity in the autistic spectrum. I have a cousin whose son is much further down the spectrum than I. He can’t even go to the bathroom properly. He can’t even speak. So, yes, I’m aware that not everyone with autism is as “functional” as me. But that’s not my point.
We are all born with a defect: original sin. People with handicaps shouldn’t be seen as burdens. They should be seen as people. And by helping them, I don’t mean “throw money at them or reduce them to a status that will make them more complacent so they’ll vote for you.” That’s what politicians seem to think. No, I would rather see disabled people get a hand up, not a hand out. I learned this in my years I spent in Special Education classes in school. I was in Special Education classes from third grade until my junior year in high school. But even after I was “mainstreamed”, I still retained what I learned from socializing with the students in those classes. I didn’t treat them any differently, as I had seen my peers do.
I don’t see myself as useless. Yes, my autism causes problems. I can speak and socialize with others, but I have difficulty seeing what is acceptable. But there’s little I can’t overcome. So, please, don’t focus on what I can’t do and what limits me. I am a person. That’s all that should matter.