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Better Terminology?

Posted by on Apr. 19, 2012 at 1:42 PM
  • 7 Replies

I apologize if this has been discussed already, but I have to say, I really dislike some common terms such as High Functioning and Low Functioning.  It sounds as if one is better than the other, and I don't feel as if either description gives an accurate picture.  But when it seems necessary to describe your child's type of autism, what else do you say? I suppose I could say mild autism, but not sure that's much better.

The other I can't stand is NT or neurotypical.  But again, what do you say? 

I don't mean to criticize people for using these terms, and I use them myself.  I just don't care for them and was curious if anyone has better alternatives. Thanks!

by on Apr. 19, 2012 at 1:42 PM
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Replies (1-7):
greenmommo
by on Apr. 19, 2012 at 1:45 PM
I think Leobaby had a post not too long ago about it. Unfortunately I'm still using those terms because theyaree the ones everyone in the community understand. :(
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ROGUEM
by on Apr. 19, 2012 at 2:06 PM

 I feel guilty everytime I use them.  I even tried to not use them for awhile but there are just no other terms that are univeral and every one understands.  I hate to say "normal" even more than NT.  AspieCarrie had a word that started with "here"  something or another, but it looked like the word  heretic...LOL 

I wish there were less offensive terms.  Maybe we should make our own :)

Siobhan69
by on Apr. 19, 2012 at 2:17 PM

Yes I really dislike those words too but like you've said what else can you use. I've used the word "normal" and kind of cringed that I used it but I couldn't find another word that would suit my son having a normal day. 

LIMom1105
by on Apr. 19, 2012 at 4:20 PM

I know, no one seems to like them, but what else do you use? I agree, normal is even worse than neurotypical.  And who in the world is really "normal" anyway?

If I think of any terms that seem descriptive and less polarizing, I'll share them.  Maybe polarizing is a bit strong, but I think that's what I really don't like about these terms, the us and them nature of them.

kajira
by Emma on Apr. 19, 2012 at 4:23 PM
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I actually love the term neurotypical It's just fun to say and I bug my husband with it because it sounds silly to say it out loud. hahahaha

I don't understand why people get os upset over the words. they don't bug me.

CandM_Momster
by on Apr. 19, 2012 at 5:38 PM
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I don't think it's the words that bother me so much as the context people view them in.  I think if we make them sound just like "normal" everyday language and like it's not really that big of a deal, more people will come to do the same.  Eh, but maybe I'm a dreamer :)

I say high functioning when referring to my son when trying to explain to outsiders what we're dealing with just because they don't see how we're coming up with a possible autism diagnosis.  Without actually experiencing his everyday behaviors, most just assume he's "normal".  But, like you said, what is normal anyways?

tiffyhamm
by Tiffy on Apr. 19, 2012 at 5:45 PM
I don't really have a problem with those terms. I can see why others would, but I've found that it's a lot easier to explain the concept of "spectrum" using those terms when talking to ppl outside of the autism community. I have also found that most of those ppl don't think one is better than the other. I actually think it's more something that the parents of children with autism think about.

Now, I don't like the term Autistic when describing a person with autism. It makes it seem as though that's all they are as opposed to something they have.
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