Autism in context

Understanding autism in context is the way to move from neurodiversity towards neuroharmony.

In contrast with the common definitions of autism, I describe autism not in behavioural terms. The typical characteristics of autism, as you will find them not only on websites and in books but also in the diagnostic criteria, namely the marked difficulties in social interaction and communication and the restricted and repetitive patterns of behavior, interests, or activities, are in my opinion not autism but the consequence of autism and many of them reflect the confusion, misunderstandings, anxiety and stress that are involved when a brain works in an autistic way. Therefore there is no such thing as autistic behaviour. The behaviour we see in people with an autism diagnosis can also be seen in people with other conditions and even in so-called neurotypical people.

To me, autism can only defined in terms of perception and cognition. Autism refers to a typical way of understanding the world. Therefore, we can understand autism only in the context of how an autistic brain experiences the world.

Want to learn more?

I wrote a short article about the autistic brain and how we need to see it in context in order to give autistic people a happy and fulfilled life.

And here’s a short animation video explaining autism as context blindness:

Autism as context blindness: a short introduction