Tag Archives: respect

Don’t be an Ass Burger, It’s only Autism.

20 Jun

I can’t tell you how many times, on a DAILY basis, I see people, GROWN PEOPLE stare, and point, and yes, occasionally laugh at those with special needs out and about. OR, just be like, completely AGHAST at the whole thing, like they’ve walked into a house of horrors and there is no way out.

 

 

 

 

Yeah, I’m talking to you.

 

 

 

Unless you are a small child, you have no excuse. Most of the time, I will say people do that quick “did I just see that” look and then look everywhere BUT at the people I am with, which is WAY MORE TOLERABLE than the following responses:

  • laugh, point, mock, be a straight up dingleberry about it (its happened, and I get ANGRY)
  • stare so long at us, I don’t know whether to pose for a picture, or think that maybe I know you and you are waiting for acknowledgement.

I mean, for REAL now, how in the hell would YOU like it if someone was staring at you, deep into your soul through your eyeballs, trying to feel you out?

 

 

 

its just awkward, and I will do it right back.

 

 

 

Not good, that’s how. So, let me give you my two favorite responses to the two most popular reactions that I have listed:

  • Well, laugh and point and joke? Fool, you better bet your McDonald’s paycheck that I am going to FOLLOW you if possible, or if not, say something along the lines of THIS, LOUD ENOUGH FOR ALL TO HEAR (either following you or not), in that particular voice I get( like if Fran Drescher and Joe Pesci had a baby) when I get angry meatball like:

“Oh, hey, this guy, he’s got jokes! Let’s sit down and listen to another one! Shoot, what was that about retarded people? Maybe like, I dunno, take off your sister’s jeans, so that your testicles can drop, and your voice can mature, so I can HEAR YOU when you got somethin’ cute to say! MMMMKKKAAAYYYY?!?!?!” (<—sadly, I have said this VERBATIM)

 

lol for googling “angry meatball”…but that does have a striking resemblance to me.

 

 

Just stare like we are some sort of optical illusion poster. WELL, then, I am going to either stare right back at ‘cha!, or look you dead in your soul sucking eyes and say “HI!” so maybe you can notice that you are like, being a super creep, and it is NOT acceptable behavior.

Actually, don’t. Just LOOK AWAY YOU FREAK.

 

 

 

So, I guess you may asking yourself this- “well, miss all-and-mighty, how do YOU suggest I act? And what is the DEAL with these people, anyways?” (<—been asked that, so…)

I’ll be nice and fill you in on BOTH.

 

 

haha, happy meatballs.

 

 

 

PART ONE: HOW TO ACT AROUND PEOPLE WHO ARE “DIFFERENT”

 

 

Motto: Be a Neighbor, Not a Nazi

Like Jake from State Farm, but in REAL LIFE!

 

Well, lets see. Simply enough put, act like you always do (unless you are always a toolbag, then maybe work on that, k?)

Seriously. I know, sometimes people with disabilities may look a little, well, ‘scary’, but you are a GROWN PERSON. ACT IT. I mean really. If you were busted up from an accident or something, would YOU want people staring and pointing or laughing like they just walked into the county fair’s freakshow? (or WalMart at 3am? ba dum tiss) NO, you WOULD NOT. So don’t do it. This is where the golden rule kicks in. “Do unto others as you would have done unto you”. What if that was YOUR kid? Because guess what, asshat? They ARE someone’s kid, someone’s family, someone’s loved one, they are IMPORTANT to someone, and you gotta be some kind of Nazi to think that being a complete dirtwad to someone just because of how they look/act/seem.

 

 

You are like this guy. Picking on and discriminating against those different than you. Sidenote- I would totally throat punch these two.

 

 

 

And for the love of ALL things holy, PLEASE, it won’t KILL YOU to say “hi” if a person with special needs acknowledges you. Many times when out, they are working on things like acceptable social behavior, and being polite, and in the case of many with Autism, even just making EYE CONTACT is a HUGE THING. If they speak to you, smile and say hello. Like Mister Rogers would. Be a good neighbor, not a Nazi.

 

 

 

 

come on now, seriously, how many people do you know that can go from Nazi to Fred Rogers that quick? Talent I tell ya!

 

 

 

Also, if you see someone with special needs having difficulty with something, HELP THEM. You would help a child or your grandmother, right? Well, this is no different. Thankfully, in my near decade of doing what I do, on top of having family members and loved ones with disabilities,  most of the people I come across are from Mister Rogers Neighborhood. Cashiers, shoppers, barbers, policemen, community members, whoever- most of them are awesome at not being rude. But then there are those straight off the U-Boat of Unacceptable Jerks. You are the ones that need this talking to. GET YOUR ACTS TOGETHER. FRICK. Here’s a suggestion to all of you riff-raff: Come do MY job for a day. You might walk into my house with a crappy attitude, but I bet you’ll be walking out a different person. (or, you know, you might not walk out, Nazi. *cracks knuckles intimidatingly*)

 

 

 

…what was that joke again? I can’t understand you through your mouth hole.

 

 

 

 

And for those of you good neighbors- it goes for you too. Seriously- volunteer in some capacity! Be a buddy, help out at the Special Olympics, tutor or mentor a person. Lord knows I do not do my job for the pay, I could get paid anywhere, doing anything. I do it for the personal satisfaction I get, the warm, fuzzy feeling inside when someone accomplishes something, be it putting together a puzzle, making a bed, or saying “hi” for the FIRST TIME EVER. It’s rewarding. The bond I have with people I have met and taken care of day in and day out for so long  will be with me forever. Even if some days I would rather gargle bleach and run with scissors simultaneously. We all have those days, no matter what you do.

 

 

 

 

First Mr. R, now the girls. You really can learn a lot from your elders, eh?

 

 

 

 

 

PART TWO: WHAT IS THE ‘DEAL’ WITH THESE PEOPLE, ANYWAYS?

 

Short answer- nothing. What the hell is the deal with YOU?

Long answer- well, most of my time doing what I do, and within personal life relation has been focused on those with Autism. Here is the “definition” of Autism, as cited from the DSM V (a fancy book for fancy smart doctors):

[The following is from Diagnostic and Statistical   Manual of Mental Disorders: DSM IV]

    (I) A total of six (or more) items from (A), (B), and (C), with at least two from (A), and one each from (B) and (C)

        (A) qualitative impairment in social interaction, as  manifested by at least two of the following
                 1. marked impairments in the use of multiple nonverbal behaviors such as eye-to-eye gaze, facial expression, body posture, and gestures to regulate social interaction        

      2. failure to develop peer relationships appropriate to developmental level        
      3. a lack of spontaneous seeking to share enjoyment, interests, or achievements with other people, (e.g., by a lack of showing, bringing, or pointing out objects of interest to other people)                 4. lack of social or emotional reciprocity ( note: in the description, it gives the following as examples: not actively participating in simple social play or games, preferring solitary activities, or involving others in activities only as tools or “mechanical” aids )

        (B) qualitative impairments in communication as manifested by at least one of the following:        

       1. delay in, or total lack of, the development of spoken language (not accompanied by an attempt to compensate through alternative modes of communication such as gesture or mime)        
      2. in individuals with adequate speech, marked impairment in the ability to initiate or sustain a conversation with others        
      3. stereotyped and repetitive use of language or idiosyncratic language        
      4. lack of varied, spontaneous make-believe play or social imitative play appropriate to developmental level

        (C) restricted repetitive and stereotyped patterns of behavior, interests and activities, as manifested by at least two of the following:        

      1. encompassing preoccupation with one or more stereotyped and restricted patterns of interest that is abnormal either in intensity or focus        
      2. apparently inflexible adherence to specific, nonfunctional routines or rituals        
      3. stereotyped and repetitive motor mannerisms (e.g hand or finger flapping or twisting, or complex whole-body movements)        
      4. persistent preoccupation with parts of objects

(II) Delays or abnormal functioning in at least one of the  following areas, with onset prior to age 3 years:    

        (A) social interaction     (B) language as used in social communication     (C) symbolic or imaginative play

(III) The disturbance is not better accounted for by Rett’s  Disorder or Childhood Disintegrative Disorder

 

There you have it, the official diagnostic criteria for Autism Spectrum Disorder. Was that a lot to take in? Yeah? Imagine how the kid who has it feels, on a DAILY BASIS, and then imagine how that would feel on top of your stares and Judge Judy attitude. Tsk tsk.  But honestly, this, like Down Syndrome, ODD, intellectual disability (MR for you out of the loop folks), Cerebral Palsy, FAS, TBI, Dyspraxia, etc., etc., etc., VARIES for person to person. One person on the spectrum may not be able to speak, one may have a full-time job. Currently, 1 in 88 children are affected by Autism. 1 in every 691 babies are born with Down Syndrome. Like, that’s a LOT of kids. With odds like that, eventually, you may know one. So think about it, slowly if you have to. HOW. WOULD. YOU. FEEL. IF. IT. WAS. YOUR. KID???

 

 

 

Exactly. Autism (or any other listed below) is NOT, I REPEAT NOT A PARENTING PROBLEM. AND JOG OFF IF YOU FEEL THAT WAY.

 

 

  Let me tell you how you will feel. You would feel, at the initial news of a diagnosis, or of a suspected diagnosis, like you have been punched in the gut by Andre the Giant multiple times, while the world is Chicken Little-ing around your head. You will feel like you did something wrong, be it prenatal care, or bad, bad karma. You will DOUBLE feel this gut punch each and every time some ignorant, arrogant, scumbag, loser, jackass, waste-of-air makes a smartass comment. You will TRIPLE feel this when your child/loved one notices. I know, because my child was labeled with special needs (that sound a lot like Dyspraxia, but hey, I’m not a doctor *sarcasm*), I have family members affected by it, and I have work in there too. When you work with someone long enough, they become your family, sorry, no way around that one. So with every success these super awesome people in my life make, relatives or not, I feel intense pride and I could seriously fist pump with them for hours over it (and fist pump we do). But every time someone is a Sergeant Douchebag, I just can’t help but to get that angry gut punch feeling, and go all General Whoop-yo-ass. 

 

 

Yeah, lets see how tough you are. I will OWN you.

 

SO, long, ranty blog short, DO NOT be a jerk. Seriously. Do unto others. If you can’t say something nice.  The Golden Rule applies to EVERYONE.

 

 

Now that we’re clear.

 

Except Hitler. Does NOT apply to Hitler.

And all his friends too! The Golden Rule does not apply here.

 

 

 

 

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