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Showing posts from July, 2012

Learning to "Empathize in the Moment"

Long time readers of this blog will know that it's a myth that people with Asperger's syndrome can't empathize and that if a situation is explained to them, they can certainly feel emotion and put themselves "into the shoes of another". The question is, can a person with Asperger's learn to empathize automatically and without the need for explanation. Empathy is a tricky thing to define but one thing is for sure; it isn't about feeling sorry for someone. It's about either feeling as they do, understanding how they feel or having a reciprocal feeling. Some of the biggest challenges for people with Asperger's syndrome lie around the interpretation of gestures, tone and expression in both directions, sending and receiving. Gestures, tone and expression are the primary means of communicating the human emotional state with talking and writing being used far less.  In fact, quite often spoken expression confusingly communicates the exact opposite of

A Response to "Want to commit suicide because of my son's autism"

This post is a response to;  Want to commit suicide because of my son’s autism by Tammy Tammy, who blogs at Autism Learning Felt ( ) was looking through the search words used to get to her blog when she saw “ Want to commit suicide because of my son’s autism ”.  Her post is a heartfelt response to the unknown person who searched for the phrase. Please read Tammy's post . A short while ago, there was a wave of support for a similar search using the term " I wish I didn't have Aspergers " and it was great to see the community come together to provide support and encouragement for the person in this position but I'm keen to see whether or not we're willing to open our arms to the carers. I hope so. The Issues between Advocates with Autism and Carers Unfortunately, there is one big problem which stands between the advo

Forget Grades, Concentrate on the three Rs

We are a society obsessed with betterment through numbers and it seems that we are constantly trying to find ways to have simple numbers prove our worth in society. Films, for example, are rated by the number of stars a reviewer gives them - or by their gross takings at the box office but neither of these is a personal rating applicable to you, the viewer. We've all had times where we've disagreed with critics and we all know that box office success doesn't always mean that a film is great. The same applies to other parts of our lives. People who engage us in conversation want to know what type of car we drive, where we live and what we do for a living. They seem like harmless enough questions but quite often these people are fishing for the clues which will help them either outrank you in some way - or become insanely jealous. Of course, our lives are far too complex to be defined by such simple comparisons but that doesn't stop people from trying - particularly