Appearing Normal - Printable Version
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Appearing Normal - lgmccarville - 05-24-2007 12:03 AM
Should we strive to appear normal? Or is it better to educate the world to accept our personhood as different and okay. I saw this video by A.M. Baggs. In My Language she states: The existence and value of many different kinds of thinking and interaction in a world where how close you can appear to a specific one of them determines whether you are seen as a real person or an adult or an intelligent person, and in a world in which those determine whether you have rights, their are people being tortured, people dying because they are considered non persons, because their kind of thought is so unusual as to not be considered thought at all. Only when the many shapes of personhood are recognise will justice and human rights be possible. So what do you think is it possible to educate people to accept the different shapes she is talking about?
RE: Appearing Normal - hrick - 05-26-2007 11:08 PM
We love the quote. Hrick and mom
RE: Appearing Normal - Max the Bear - 05-27-2007 12:41 AM
"Only when the many shapes of personhood are recognized will justice and human rights be possible."
Exactly. Which is why each person -- no matter his own "shape" -- has to stand up for the personhood of all "shapes."
RE: Appearing Normal - hypochondriac668 - 05-27-2007 02:01 AM
I think each person should do as he or she sees fit to do.
RE: Appearing Normal - Prufrock - 05-27-2007 02:09 AM
Of course they should! If we were all the same, you know how boring that would be?
RE: Appearing Normal - anbuend - 05-27-2007 02:29 AM
I wouldn't go as far as hypochondriac668, because there are things people can see fit to do that are wrong. But I do think that the basic shape of a person (I don't know a better word than shape) should be respected, including very non-standard shapes.
RE: Appearing Normal - hypochondriac668 - 05-27-2007 02:56 AM
I meant as regards to whether or not to behave as yourself or to " strive to appear normal", each person should do as he or she sees fit.Sorry, I guess I have not been very clear. Wait a minute, was the question posted by lgmccarville the rhetoric kind? Sorry, silly me.
RE: Appearing Normal - Pakrat - 05-27-2007 02:30 PM
I'm round. Round is a shape.
RE: Appearing Normal - Pakrat - 05-27-2007 02:30 PM
Oops! I meant "I'm in shape - round is a shape".
RE: Appearing Normal - bipolarbear - 05-30-2007 01:52 PM
"life on every planet, every universe, every world, every dimension,
anywhere and everywhere.
is not physically nor mentally equal, but our value is."
written one day.
RE: Appearing Normal - hrick - 05-30-2007 05:43 PM
Autism is not reflective of soul, that is why it is so important to live it. Anon
RE: Appearing Normal - Ijads - 06-01-2007 04:44 PM
I think it's important to recognise the distinction between our "quirks", our "strengths" and or "failings". Obviously we should capitalise on our strengths, these are the blessings we have which offset the failings we have. We should strive to overcome our weaknesses, or deal with them as best we can - this might include striving to be more 'normal'. When it comes to our 'quirks' (the things which make us 'different' without being better or worse), the question is valid.
I grew up being considered by myself and the rest of the world to be "weird" (I'm sure others can relate to me in this respect!). As I grew up I learned to embrace and enjoy that (it was better that than get upset and/or hate myself for it!). In some cases I certainly do strive to appear normal because sadly this is not an ideal world and there are times when a weirdo will not be accepted. Sometimes you'll want to stick to your guns and be happy that people will dislike you for being simply 'different', but there are other times when it really is in your best interests to 'fit in'. Fitting in might be appropriate in a job interview - get the job, become respected for doing it well, then let loose with your eccentricities and they'll be embraced and appreciated; you can educate people if you are successful, but if you are a weirdo and a loser, you're not going to get far educating many neurotypicals. Another example might be in dealing with an authority figure - a school teacher or policeman; in these cases acting weird may get you into trouble, it might even seem incriminating (imagine a police officer suspecting you of doing something wrong - here acting weird may be normal to you, but the policeman is going to think "Wow, this person is acting strangely! Clearly they're guilty of something").
I am well known by thousands of people as being very much weird/eccentric, in few situations do I try to hide my 'non bad abnormalities. (Yes, thousands, I have a reasonably high profile in some circles).
RE: Appearing Normal - Xanderbeanz - 06-01-2007 08:13 PM
*normal* is dull...if people have a problem with you just because you're an aspie then they're probably fascists, there's alot of them about
RE: Appearing Normal - Lienda Balla - 06-01-2007 08:16 PM
I saw that video some time back and really loved it. How right on though. She meant that for people with certain spectrums, but that negative thing she mentioned happens to have hystoricaly been the root of a lot of past discrimination to just about every human type. Some people claim that kids learn from rough parents, that learned from their parents (ect.), that the targeted catagory of folk are bad folk.
Such as, a parent makeing a slure of somekind and labeling a specific person as if they were pathetic in front of their children, so then the kids learn that the targets are more of a "Oh it's them, let's not go be friends with those inferior people!" Then the child grows up hateing the type that was targeted as being an "inferior being" or something like that. Maybe some think it would bless society if this "inferior" didn't egsist at all, but can be just as bad. Some of them act out on it because they learned and think they can get away with it unscraped.
Here is why some of us hate the unpopular phrase, "Can't you just be more like..." I think it's better to edgucate the world about what "human" really means. Bad people don't diserve so called 'inferior' peoples' submition.
RE: Appearing Normal - Max the Bear - 06-01-2007 09:48 PM
I find the whole idea of 'appearing normal' really repulsive and offensive -- but it's also indisputable that there are situational advantages (as Ijads points out.)
How does one reconcile those "need to pass" moments with retaining individual integrity? I guess it's a complex set of choices everyone makes for themselves.
RE: Appearing Normal - SheWhoCan'tThinkOfAUsername - 06-02-2007 06:46 AM
Hmmm... I don't want people to think I'm something I'm not. But I don't want to show off, "Hey! I'm a weirdo!" either. Basically, I try to act NT enough when in formal situations. But when I'm in a casual situation, I really don't care if I do things other people think is weird. If they don't like who I am, I probably wouldn't like who they are, so what's the point of trying to impress them?
But I *don't* like getting teased. When I'm at school or somewhere where I'll have to put up with those people for a long time, I just kinda lie low, keep all relationships very distant and don't really let anyone see *any* side of me until I feel like I can trust him/her. I don't go way out of my way to wear cute clothes, because I frankly don't give a darn about beauty, but I keep up my appearance enough to blend in.
And, even when in very casual situations, I try to be at least polite. I don't want to offend another person, whether or not I believe they should be offended by that.
RE: Appearing Normal - Ijads - 06-02-2007 09:11 AM
I think we need to keep in mind that everyone needs to put in an effort to be normal - even normal people. Social rules and conventions are designed to keep everyone comfortable and safe. Neurotypicals often want to do things which don't fit social rules or customs, but they too need to learn to fit in. I don't think we should say "Oh, but I'm autistic, so that rule doesn't apply to me" any more than a neurotypical should say "I don't feel like being polite/quiet/respectful/well dressed/clean/etc etc so I won't". I spent most of my life attempting to 'fit into normal society', but then again, this is a challenge which everyone faces, not just those with an unusual mental phenotype. When I found out I had Asperger's, part of me suddenly felt justified in being abnormal and I felt less obliged to relate to people on a 'normal' level, feeling that they had an obligation to understand me and that I was as I am because of the Asperger's, so why should I try to change? Well, everyone needs to learn to communicate on the same level, in the same way. Unfortunately, being as a group as "less normal than usual" as people go, we need to put in a bit more work to 'fit in'. I don't think we should ever sacrifice who we are, but there are valid reasons to adapt enough to be able to communicate and function with the rest of the world.