We need more than Autism Awareness--We Need inclusion

     April 2 is Autism Awareness Day and has been so since 2007 when the United Nations general assembly passed a resolution confirming Apri...

Thursday, February 24, 2022

Five Things People May Not Know About Autism

        People talk much about autism on the internet, but have you heard of the following.
  1. The Three Levels of Autism. Starting with the DSM V, Asperger's Syndrome, PDD-NOS, and classical autism were categorized into autism levels 1-3 (Howell, n.d.)
    1. Autism Level 1. People with level 1, a milder form of autism, may
      1. Problems starting conversations
      2. Trouble maintaining conversations
      3. Difficulty transitioning to other tasks
      4. Struggles making friends
    2. Autism Level 2. People with level 2, a more pervasive form of autism, may
      1. Have significant communication problems
      2. Talk in simple sentences
      3. Have a narrow sphere of interests
      4. "Struggle with change (Howell, n.d.)"
    3. Autism Level 3. The most severe kind involves
      1. Speaks only two or three words at a time
      2. Rarely engages in social interaction
      3. Rigid behavior
      4. Distinctive repetitive behaviors
  2. Autistic Agitation (Elsevier, 2012). Commonly referred to as a meltdown (Lipsky, 2011), agitation occurs when the stress load reaches capacity and the autistic can no longer control himself. He releases that pent up stress
  3. Autistic Catatonia (Wing & Shah, 2004). Autistic Catatonia is a rare condition that autistics can get that includes
    1. Slowness of movement and speech
    2. Difficulting initiating or completing actions
    3. Increase passivity
    4. Reliance on prompting by others
  4.  Epilepsy (Medi Matters, 2021). Although epilepsy is a separate condition, research shows a link between epilepsy and autism. 
  5. Intellectual Disability (Menezes, 2021). Again, a different condition, but a small number of autistic people have intellectual disabilities. Anyone below 70 has an intellectual disability.
Do you have autism? Do you need help? Please contact us at (520) 314-6896
Elsevier. (2012, May 31). New treatment for irritability in autism.             ScienceDaily. Retrieved February 23, 2022, from                                www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/05/120531102107.htm

Lipsky, D. (2011). From Anxiety to Meltdown [E-book]. Jessica           Kinsey Publishers.

Medi Matters: Link Between Epilepsy and Autism. (2021, December 28). The Indian Practitioner, NA. https://link.gale.com/apps/doc/A688183667/HWRC?

Menezes, M., Robinson, M. F., Harkins, C., Sadikova, E., & Mazurek,     M. O. (2021). Unmet Health Care Needs and Health Care Quality in     Youth with Autism Spectrum Disorder with and without Intellectual Disability. Autism, 25(8), 2199–2208.https://doi.org/ 10.1177/ 13623613211014721

Wing, L., & Shah, A. (2004). Catatonia in Autism Spectrum Disorders.     British Journal of Psychiatry, 176(4), 357–362.

Thursday, February 10, 2022

Lack of support for Autistics

     I recently read two research papers about autistics' lack of a support system.

The first paper discusses the way there is a lack of support. The second

paper discusses a lack of education among mental healthcare professionals.

    Crosbie, Bradley, Shaw, Cohen, and Cassidy did a study to see how recipients of services felt about the number of services they were receiving. The highest incidence of mental health issues is depression and anxiety. The highest incidence of desired support reported was mental healthcare (61.1%), mentoring (62.3%), social activities (50.6%), employment (45.1%), and mental health (40.7%).

    The article continued by explaining why people do not get support. The following reasons are:

·  Dismissed from treatment and support because perceived as "coping."

·  "Support geared towards children" only.

·  "Long waiting lists and lack of funding." 

    The Crosbie et al. and Lipinski, Boegl, Blanke, Suenkel, and Dziobek inform about the lack of knowledge among mental health professionals. Crosbie et. al. gives the following:

·  "Obstacles to accessing and receiving treatment and support."

·  "Not believed or listened to."

·  "Not suited to one's needs."

Lipinski et al. specifically discuss the mental health profession's lack of expertise to practice psychotherapy with autistics with a study that tests knowledge of autism. Needless to say, there is a lack of qualified services for adult autistics.


Adams, Dawn & Young, Kate (2021). A Systematic Review of the Perceived Barriors and Facilitators to Assessing Psychological Treatment for Mental Health Problems in Individuals on the Autism Spectrum. Review Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders 1-50. https://doi.org/10.1007/s40489020002267.

Crosbie, L. S., Bradley, L., Shaw, R., Cohen, S. B., & Cassidy, S. (2019). "People Like Me Don't Get Support:" Autistic Adult Experiences of Support and Treatment for Mental

Health Difficulties, Self-Injury and Suicidality. Autism, 23(6), 1431–1441. https://doi.org/10.1177/1362361318816053

Lipinski, Boegl, Blanke, Suenkel, and Dziobe (2021) A Blind Spot in Mental Healthcare. Psychotherapists Lack of Education and Expertise for Adults on the Autism Spectrum. Autism 1-13. https://doi.org/10.1177/13623613211057973

Tuesday, February 8, 2022

Eight Great Movies and Two TV Shows About Autism

Please Stand By

Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 56%

        A wonderfully exciting movie about an autistic woman (Dakota Fanning) who enters a contest for a Star Trek screenplay. Fanning's portrayal is excellent, and the storyline is good. Watch on Amazon

Ocean Heaven

Rotten Tomatoes Audience Score: 82%

    A terminally ill father tries to prepare his son for life after he passes. Excellent movie. Available as a Hi-YAH subscription through Amazon

My Name Is Khan

Rotten Tomatoes: 85%

An Excellent movie about a Muslim with autism who seeks an audience with the President of the United States. Highly recommended. Available on Amazon


Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 66% 

    A great film about a young autistic man (Hugh Dancy) who meets his neighbor (Rose Bryne) and starts a relationship with him. Highly recommended Watch on Amazon

Jack of Red Hearts

Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 54%.

    A good movie about a young lady (Anna Sophia Robb) who develops a relationship with the family who autistic daughter she is watching. Not a perfect film but worth the watch. Watch on Amazon

Temple Grandin

Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 100%

    An excellent movie about the early life of autism advocate Temple Grandin. Well worth the watch. Watch on Amazon

Nathan's Kingdom

Rotten Tomatoes Audience Rating: 85% 

    It's a good movie about an autistic man and his little sister seeking an imaginary kingdom from their childhood. Watch on Amazon

Snow Cake

Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 64%

An ex-con (Alan Rickman) starts a friendship with an autistic lady (Sigourney Weaver). Available on Amazon

TV Shows


    A television show about a family and their autistic high schooler. Available on Netflix

The Good Doctor

A great television show about an autistic savant who is a doctor. Available as DVD on Netflix. Current Episodes on ABC public television.