Why Tyra Banks Needs to Google Asperger's Syndrome
Thursday. 5.24.12 3:53 pm
Try not to judge me when I say that I AM DEFINITELY WATCHING AMERICA'S NEXT TOP MODEL RIGHT NOW OKAY.
I have a point to make!
There's one girl in...which season is this (I don't know self)...okay whatever there have been several girls like this throughout the seasons, anyway. There's a girl named Heather. She apparently has Asperger's Syndrome and a cocktail of mental disorders that, in part, come along for the ride. So Tyra Banks, during judging for a commercial shoot, mentions that they did read her the lines because of her Asperger's.
She proceeds to call it an advantage.
From my viewpoint, which is that of someone who has (very minimal, but still active) help from the school for a mental disorder, this girl is constantly living her life at a DISadvantage. It amazes me that, especially in the United States where we seem to be especially open about therapy and mental health (considering that the AMA writes the DSM manuals), some people still think that all extra help is putting someone at an advantage. I may need a separate testing area, but that's because it is impossible for me to concentrate on a test if someone is even chewing gum, and that alone can push me into a serious anxiety attack. If everyone had that problem, I am most certain that we would have a different testing environment altogether, because no educator in his right mind would make students test under those circumstances.
The point of disability programs are to even out the playing field. Of course there are students who take advantage of the program, just like there are students that take advantage of medications (Ritalin, hello?). The new DSM-5 is supposed to really restrict the number of diagnoses for any given disorder by increasing the minimum number of symptoms any given person must meet to receive affirmation and treatment, which will make a big difference, there. (By the way, this freaks me out because I'm very high functioning, but it will help with this ADHD madness.)
Disability programs identify what the student needs to even out the playing field with every other regular student, whether the disabled student ends up not studying too terribly well and makes a D, or the student works hard and makes straight As. The point isn't to turn them into dependent, lazy people. The point is to get them through school, so they can go into the workforce with a great resume, just like anyone else. Once you're in the workforce, it's up to you to figure out how to accommodate your own disorders...but it will be okay, because getting help in the peak years typically helps you figure out what you need, and what you need to avoid.
I'm in support of getting help when you need it. People who make others feel ashamed about it need to put some of that energy into educating themselves about 1) the mental disorder itself, and 2) the disability service.
So, essentially, Tyra Banks can take her false sense of understanding when it comes to mental health and "special treatment" and shove it.
Sunday. 5.20.12 1:24 pm
My perfectly healthy, nine-year-old dog died, while I was in Florida volunteering. I felt her go when I was standing beside the 19A soccer field, and wasn't surprised, later, when my dad texted, telling me to call my mum. I got home that night and she tried to let me get settled in and go to the bathroom first, like any mother should. I turned around and asked her what was wrong.
"Then where's Sophie, Mum."
And then she burst into tears and told me she was sorry, that she had to put her down. The suspected cause was rat poison. Her blood wouldn't coagulate enough to give her spleen surgery, and so they just gave her the injection. She would have died soon, anyway, but not soon enough, and in a lot of pain.
I've been crying since I found out, last night. I've been this upset only one other time in my life, and I had to surround myself with friends just to get myself to eat, for weeks after the fact.
Mum can have some, but I want most of her ashes. I know it's kind of weird. But she was my Adventure Dog. She always came with me.
Tuesday. 5.8.12 8:22 am
I left the house at 11am yesterday and haven't spent more than ten minutes sitting around at home since then.
IT IS EIGHT TWENTY IN THE MORNING AND I AM JUST GETTING SETTLED IN FOR BED HOW DID THIS HAPPEN. First it was Oh Come With Me to the Vet so You Can Help Me Decide on a Method to Remove [Dog's] Eye (sounds cool, sold), then it was Ooh New Resale Shop We Should Go (yeah sure I like shopping occasionally), then it was ARE YOU COMING TO ULTIMATE? (what ultimate) THE ONE TODAY (what are y--ohhh crap maybe (can I bring a friend? ...okay then I'll come)), then it was Hey Let's Get Taco Bell (not hungry, but I'll watch you eat), then it was HEY LET'S GET CICI'S (hell yeah pizza desserts), then COME BOWLING WITH US (I like bowling), then HUNGRY. STARVING. LET'S GO TO WAFFLE HOUSE (yeah sure I could eat again).
I thought it was over when we left Waffle House. Nooo. My friend ended up staying in the guest room (Neb; he's sleeping soundly upstairs as I type this (sucker)), which I neatened up for him, along with the bathroom.
So I come downstairs to check my computer and wobble off into a lazy sleep.
Oh look chat messages.
WHAT ARE YOU DOING UP YOU SHOULD BE ASLEEP COME OVER NO DON'T NO COME OVER REALLY YOU'LL LOVE IT NO YOU'RE WEAK IF YOU COME OVER YOU WILL FEEL ASTRONOMICAL REGRET COME OVER OR DON'T I DON'T CARE DO WHAT YOU WANT BUT YOU'RE MISSING OUT (KJHEKJHGE HOLY CRAP YOU ARE INSANE I'M JUST GOING TO COME AND WE'LL SORT THIS OUT ON THE FLIP SIDE).
LEAVE THERE AT SEVEN IN THE MORNING.
I Should Check on Mum While I'm Out, [Dog] Has Surgery Today (I DON'T CARE JUST DO WHAT YOU WANT fine I'm going to visit Mum).
HEY [Unicornasaurus], WHY DON'T YOU COME WITH ME FOR ADDED SUPPORT (O_O what is sleep).
LET'S GO HOME SELF (shnorgfffffffffffffffferrrrrrrrrrnnnn...?).
the date that was a yellow house
Sunday. 4.29.12 4:37 am
A truly lengthy entry.
I cross the street and see Austin sitting there, on the fountain, his head turning nervously, watching for me in the opposite direction. I stand in front of him, making no introduction, just expecting him to react to my presence in the socially-acceptable way and make the first move on greeting. Greeting people is ambiguous, and I like it when they greet me first.
He goes for a hug; I apparently go for a sideways headbutt, which is unicorn for Hello (a frontal headbutt is unicorn for Lobotomy). He doesn't comment on it much, and we move to get smoothies.
We don't get far before I see a familiar figure strolling down the sidewalk. Alarms in my brain are going off, which means that there is absolutely, one hundred percent, NO way to make it out of this encounter without someone feeling weird. He says hi first, and I oblige him with a greeting, half-trying to squirm away without anything else. My mind is flashing back to ant bites and a dark parking lot. The man beside me, being the adult in all of this, moves to introduce himself. I realize that I could be perceived as rude, but frankly I'm dealing with a lot of weird emotions and reactions to the number of coincidences since meeting Austin, and it's all sort of overwhelming, when I'm trying to organize occurrences into categories like "Weird Coincidences" and "People I Went To High School With That He's Already Met" (both high numbers, considering).
I'm mildly uncomfortable and make a strong move to keep walking without talking about how I've been. I don't owe the person in front of me any sort of conversation, although we are what I would call "aquaintances with strongly mutual friends." It didn't make sense to keep talking, anyway. I couldn't see the point. He lets me go without any pleasantries, also feeling my poignant--and mostly accidental--rejection.
"...Who was that?" Austin asks, laughing a little at my obvious discontent, as we walk away.
"EHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH," I tell him.
"So he was like..."
We agree to not discuss that anymore ever. Ever.
He proceeds to buy me a smoothie and somehow figures out the most comforting thing to say to a woman who is generally not okay with people buying her things, and says this while pulling out his money. I stand there like a moron. I ask a stupid question.
I blush at my stupid question and the fact that I am generally a moron.
We grab straws and make a dash for the door. He asks if I mind a walk, and I wonder what I'm there for otherwise if I'm not there for a walk. Austin is terrible at crossing the streets and will probably die crossing a street. He deems himself too comfortable with crossing the streets and I agree wholeheartedly.
He proceeds to throw in one of my favorite words--belligerent--for absolutely free.
We get to a parking lot and he takes a rolled-up, beaten to death, blue-striped towel off the hood of his car. He remarks on his car lightly, but I'm too bewildered by this seemingly graceful and automatic action to concentrate on that.
"How did you..."
"It's called 'thinking ahead.'"
Oh, I see, except this is exactly the type of stuff I pull when someone gives me the reins in planning an excellent date, so I'm more so afraid that I'm perpetuating my tendency to date myself in male form.
I'm stunned and wooed and I let him lead me in a direction that feels vaguely west.
It is vaguely west. We arrive at the park and proceed to people watch and talk for a couple of hours. I notice that I can't count on one hand the number of good, solid quips he's made. Everything is easy. He walks me back to my residence hall and schedules a second date with me, rather than kissing me.
I walk inside and immediately pull out my phone to text inhuman.
His respect is nothing less than astounding to me; I get the feeling that this is how I should always expect and want to be treated, but it isn't something I'm accustomed to, yet. With time.
Move out is Monday. It's very odd to know that I'll never be in this room again. Everything I know is ending, and new things are taking its place.
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