An Explanation of Autism from a person with Autism


33 Year Old Railfan
Everyone is discussing Autism today. People are discussing ways to cure Autism, ways to prevent Autism, the signs of Autism, even how to eradicate Autism all together. Well, I believe that everyone who reads this needs to rethink what they think of Autism. People often believe that Autism causes people with it to not be very smart and need to be in a psychiatric wards in hospitals. That is an incorrect assumption of Autism. Autism is the generic name of the versions of Autism that is found on what is called the Autism Spectrum. I believe that if you want to know what Autism is, you should not look in a book or online, but to seek someone out who has a form of Autism or knows someone who has a form of Autism. That is the only way to know what Autism is like and how people handle it. Not every person with Autism has the assumption everyone believes. For example, yours truly.
I have what's called Asperger Syndrome, better known as Aspergers. In the 'smartness' category, I'm have what's called 'High-Functioning Autism.'The result of this is that I have a keen interest, and knowledge in trains, but not much knowledge in other topics. I also tend to cut my food into mutiples of preferably eight, but sometimes I'll have to cut them by multiples of four. Those are some of the most noticeable signs of Aspergers. I was also one of six other people with some form of Autism or has signs of Autism to graduate from the high school I was going to with Honors; this is reserved for the more brilliant students. I always knew that I was different, but it wasn't until I was in high school that I learned that I have Autism. I also beat out several other students throughout the county I live in to represent my county in the 'state level' of National Geographic's Geography Bee, better known as the Geo Bee. I was eliminated in one of the first rounds of conpetition, but still it was a once-in-a-lifetime experiance. Beginning in middle school, I volunteered at the school's library placing returned books back on the shelves they came from. After that library closed for renovation, I went on to taking care of a small garden at the school. I won a beautification award for the work I did. In high school, I also volunteered in the library before it too closed for renovation. Instead of taking care of a garden, I manned a small group of tables that was set up for selling library books that the librarians choose to get rid of.
Beginning late in high school, I began participating in Special Olympics, an Olympics for people with disabilities. It began with volunteering at the 'county-level' Special Olympics. Next I began being an athlete in both the Summer and Winter 'regional' Special Olympics. I did Slalom in the Winter Olympics, while swimming in the Summer Olympics. I changed from swimming in the Summer Olympics to 5K walk in Fall Olympics. Now I'm doing Masters' Bowling, which is a Special Olympics competition.
Also, one more thing for those of you have just discovered that one of your children or one of your relatives have a child with some form of Autism, here's some advice:
You're told by someone in the medical field that your child has Autism and that he/she should be put in a psychiatric ward, and that it would be the best thing for them. Here's something you should ask before you make your decision:
1. Will they or not be confined to a bed?
2. Will they be confined to a straitjacket for any amount of time?
3. What kind of punishment will they get if they misbehave?
4. Will they ever go outside the building or will they be confined inside the building?
5. Will they experiance some sort of education (i.e. what you learn in school) or learn how to do things (i.e. things they would learn to do) while in there?
6. Will they be taken on trips to places such as a zoo? Will they be allowed to have a relative take them on trips to see family?
7. Do you have the option of taking their children out of the psychiatric ward and live at a family member's house?
I'm autistic. I have Asperger's Syndrome Disorder too. I tend to specialise in one field, for me this is Trainz.

I have no trouble with learning, it is making and keeping friends and social situations that i have trouble with. I like to come here as the other members share my interest in trains and I find it easy to fit in.

Jordon, that was a great article. Thanks for sharing. I don't have any awards to share. :)
I like this article as well. Oddly enough I also have Asperger's Syndrome as well (might suprise some given the amount of work I put in to help others)

Captainkman - I'm very similar to you by the seems of things.
Shane, that actually doesn't surprise me. The technical side of Trainz is your area and you like to help people in that area. Your website and blogs are great larning tools for others. I try to do the same sort of thing using YouTube but I don't have the sort of success and recognition your website and blogs have.

My speciality is fixing content, and just doing stuff in the game itself, so I like helping people with that sort of thing. And picking up spelling and grammar errors, no matter how ticked off the person on the receiving end gets. :)
Thanks for shining some light on this topic to everyone. I'm Autistic as well, and when I was first told by my parents about it, I felt very outta place at the time.
I have Asperger's Syndrome just like you do. My main interest is anything transportation. Trains are my number 1, but I do love planes, 18-wheelers, and whatever else is used for transport.

I was not an honors student in high school, but a blend of kindness and charisma in my personality made me quite a hit among my fellow students. But, I did have several unfortunate clashes with a select bunch of teachers because they did things to try and exploit my Asperger's.

This is one of the best articles on the Autism Spectrum that I have ever read. I cannot really think of any other words to describe my thoughts on this article. :)
I have autism too. What a great article.
By the way, do they really confine children to psychiatric wards just because they have autism in the US? Psychiatric wards are for madmen/serial killers, not innocent children.
When I was born, supposedly the doctor suggested that I be placed in psychiatric ward because of my Autism, or perhaps the umbilical cord was wrapped around my neck. Fortunately, they decided not to put me in one of those wards. A friend of my mom, whose son is also Autistic, was also told that it would be better to put him in one of those wards. She also decided not to.
here's some euphemisms (synonyms for nouns) for a phychiatric ward:
The Place With Padded Walls
The Cuckoo (as in the Cuckoo Clock) House
As a father of a 18 year old Autistic son who is having very aggressive/violent behaviors can any of you on the spectrum give me some advice on how to help him not be so aggitated all the time. Any medications that you took that were helpful?