The value of experience

I follow Nick Walker, public speaker, autistic adult. He receives invitations to “educate” others about autism.

Often, autistic adults are expected to “share their knowledge” for free.  But looking at people with paid speaking gigs at conventions, symposiums, etc., many non-autistic speakers get PAID to “share their knowledge”.

If you are a speaker, if you are educating, you deserve compensation – transport/food/time, at least.

Nick shared this for those who need it:

From my responses to today’s emails:
“Thank you for this invitation. I would most definitely be interested in speaking to the students in your program at some point. However, I would need to ask for a higher honorarium than the one you quoted, because of my extremely busy schedule and the difficulty involved in getting to your campus on public transit. Added to this is the fact that I’m a member of a minority group whose members are customarily undervalued, underpaid, and pressured to educate others about ourselves for little or no pay. As such, I feel a certain obligation to my people to set better precedents by having firm boundaries about the value of my time and labor.”
If you’re a member of a traditionally undervalued group, feel free to steal this and adopt it for your own professional purposes.

What if #autistic people *need* to “lose words” when we’re young? — Happy, Healthy Autist

An interesting thought came to mind while I was doing my morning exercise bike ride. I was on Twitter, and some folks were talking about how their kids “lost words” (i.e., became non-verbal) at such-and-such an age. Some of them “got their words back” when they were older, and then they had very advanced vocabularies. […]

via What if #autistic people *need* to “lose words” when we’re young? — Happy, Healthy Autist

“The Accountant” Tries To Be a Unique & Authentic Portrayal of Autism Using By the Numbers Stereotypes and No Actual Autistic People


The Accountant (which stars Ben Affleck & Anna Kendrick) is a film about an Autistic forensic accountant who is also a highly skilled hit man. The people behind the film (which opens on October 14) were featured in a recent LA Times article regarding what they did to make sure that the portrayal of an “Assassin-On-The-Spectrum” honestly.

The writer, director & stars all commented on how they tried to both turn the film narrative of autism on its head and maintain authenticity.

The problem is that based on everything that is revealed about the character in the piece actually sounds pretty much exactly like the same old tired Autism stereotypes that have been done before.

To add insult to injury the stated methods of attempting to ascertain that the film was accurate and inoffensive are deeply problematic and certainly don’t reassure me that due diligence was done.

This film hasn’t…

View original post 1,292 more words

There is Blood on your Aware Hands

Felis Autisticus

Austin Anderson was murdered by his mother last week.

If you want to read an article that paints a pretty, sad, objectifying picture of the events and poises his mother as sad and repentant (while Austin is just a dead invalid), here you go.

If you don’t want to read that article (you don’t), I’ll give you the important cliffnotes.

  1. Austin was left in a field by his mother to become dehydrated and suffer from deprivation of critical medication.

Now for my comments:

  1. This is terrible and cruel
  2. This is not unusual
  3. The coverage of Austin as a burdensome, helpless dependant is not unusual

Now give me a moment. This is hard. This is hard.


THIS IS NOT UNUSUAL. Let me put those words in huge, non-blinking lights for a moment. Let me cleanly excavate, actually, all of the things that are not unusual about this:

  • An…

View original post 376 more words

why i’d follow neurodiversity on tour, if like that were a thing

ND Groupies UNITE!

a diary of a mom

If you’ve been around here for a while then you know about my celebrity crush. No, not George Clooney, my OTHER celebrity crush, Barb Rentenbach.

Barb is a nonspeaking autistic woman who, for lack of a more delicate phrase, kicks ass. Along with her therapist extraordinaire, Lois Prislovsky, Barb is an author, producer, and co-host of a radio show. Yes, really. Because with a little thought and creativity (and, in this case, the money to emply a voice for hire), pretty much nothing is impossible.

Anyway, Barb and Lois reached out to me a couple of weeks ago with a request. Since there’s pretty much nothing I wouldn’t do for them, I was glad to find that it was quite reasonable. To celebrate the launch of their latest book, Neurodiversity: A Humorous and Practical Guide to Living with ADHD, Anxiety, Autism, Dyslexia, The Gays and Everyone Else

View original post 1,842 more words