I want to be wrong about Julia

Earlier this week I posted to my Facebook page a few thoughts about Sesame Street’s new puppet, Julia, who “has autism”. I’m putting those thoughts here, for reference, and following them with some further thoughts having now watched the new videos including Julia that have been added to the Sesame St website.  Continue reading

TeachMeet Human Rights

On Tuesday 14 March, I attended TeachMeet Human Rights in Sydney. It was a wonderful event, with many excellent presentations. I was honoured to be invited to present a 7 minute talk on Autism and Inclusion.

Inclusion in education is a human right, yet there is much about our education system that makes it inaccessible to autistic students. I spoke about the experience of autistic students and how to make schools and classrooms more welcoming and accessible, using strategies to avoid the practice of seclusion and restraint that we have seen occurring recently.  Continue reading

A severe problem

I received a message this morning, letting me know about an article on the FaceBook page of the Department of Education and Training in Queensland’s Autism Hub.

The article is upsetting in a number of ways. It contains misinformation, stereotyping, lots of negative language, and lots of blaming autistic people for their parents unhappiness and stress. Continue reading

Not just politics

It’s taken me months of processing to know what I want to say about current political happenings in the USA. You may wonder why I’d bother at all, since I live in Australia. You may wonder what US politics have to do with neurodivergence, autism, disability or me… Let me explain.  Continue reading

Sensory overload

Sensory overload is becoming a commonly used term, and not just in groups of neurodivergent people. In this article, I’m going to talk briefly about the sensory systems humans have, and then talk to you about how I experience sensory overload as an autistic person.  Continue reading

Is it really inclusion you want?

I’ve been learning a lot about myself over the past year. I have made an effort to be more self aware, so I’ve been noticing more about the things I find difficult, rather just pushing through without thinking about how I could get through better. I’ve been observing my reactions to things, and seeing patterns in my responses to stress, stimulus and overwhelm. It’s been amazing to gain self understanding that helps me live well, and helps me be in the community more instead of hiding at home feeling like I can’t do things.  Continue reading

my best self

It’s about a year since I got comfortable with saying I’m autistic. Shortly after I publicly “came out” I was asked why I would identify as disabled or allow a label like autism to be applied to me. I didn’t quite know what to say at the time, except to tell the person that labels aren’t negative and that I found it helpful in understanding myself. A year later, though, I have a more detailed answer.  Continue reading