I've always had a lesion in my brain and I've had epilepsy for as long as I can remember, so I was pretty neuro atypical long before I got this autism diagnosis as an adult just one or two years ago. I don't think you can say that someone you never met and know nothing about is "neurotypical" It's just a complete assumption and it's rude.
Good for you I guess said:I don't think you can say that someone you never met and know nothing about is "neurotypical" It's just a complete assumption and it's rude.
That's true - if you've never met them and known nothing about them. I wouldn't look at anyone new and try to think of them either in terms of 'neurotypical' or 'neurodiverse'... just as 'someone else.'
The terms are used to differentiate people on the basis of neurological make-up, and 'neurotypical' means basically 'not displaying or characterized by autistic or other neurologically atypical patterns of thought or behaviour.'
It does get used as a label by autistic people, and sometimes in a derogatory sense. I've used it as such myself, I admit. I think a lot of it stems from those of us who've endured negativity at the hands of neurotypical people: stereotyping, bullying, discrimination, being accused of using our condition 'as an excuse', etc. We are in a very small minority, and as such we often have a battle to get our voices heard and understood. Which isn't to say that all neurotypicals treat us the same. Not at all.
But I agree that it's wrong to make assumptions about people based on no knowledge. That goes for everything about them: age, race, colour, belief, sexuality, gender, ability, education, class, etc.
Martian Tom said:That goes for everything about them: age, race, colour, belief, sexuality, gender, ability, education, class, etc.
That is true, but would you ever say that someone was an old hag / slag / ***? Let alone call someone a n****r!? Would you call a person a Bible basher or a cripple or just plain thick?
So what's different about the word "neurotypical" (other than that it sounds like some kind of real medical thing.)
Although I would not fit in that category myself, I think the term is very offensive.
I guess the term neurotypical is not used to make an assumption about an individual per se but more to classify a group of people. It’s a short hand way of discribing people who do not have any neurological divergence. I think also, that some people, including myself, like to be able to classify people and their psychological make up (or anything really) into nice neat clearly defined categories. I know the reality isn’t so black and white but it’s easier for my brain to understand things in this way. I know also that people are defined by more, much more than just their neurological makeup. I think partly it is a backlash against always being labelled and marginalised by the majority, so the majority has now been given a label!
I might use a few names against certain people - though none of the stronger ones you mention. I really think it's stretching things to think of 'neurotypical' as in any way belonging to a group of insults like 'n******'.
'Neurotypical' is a pretty common term, used in the scientific community and elsewhere, to define someone whose neurological make-up isn't 'neurodiverse'.
That doesn't mean it defines the whole person. 'N*****' carries a whole huge baggage of derogatory assumptions, and is grossly offensive.
How about if someone is defined as 'haemophiliac' or 'diabetic'? It differentiates them from people who do not have those conditions. But it doesn't define them. And they're not insulting or offensive tags.
We can all find certain terms and names offensive. Some people might give you the cold shoulder if you told them you were an atheist, or a pagan. Personally, though, I don't find either 'neurotypical' or 'neurodiverse' to be offensive terms.
Some people might actually be glad to call themselves neurotypical, as it means they aren't 'autistic'.
Yes, and society is very quick to label. Some people are afraid of getting a diagnosis of autism, because they fear getting a label. Personally, I'd sooner be labelled 'autistic' than 'slow', 'disruptive', 'unfocused', 'weird', 'anti-social', 'naive', 'clumsy', 'strange', and so on.
on the flip side, I hate the term "aspergers syndrome" I think it sounds horrible, personally I love the word "autism" and "autistic", those sound less harsh. but that might just be me lol
I love the word "aspie" though, weirdly lol
OK, I guess we'll just have to agree to disagree. I think it is a rude comment, others don't.
In reply to Tom's comment that anyone who is called "neurotypical" is not autistic, please read my first comment again. An epileptic brain with a lesion cannot be said to be typical.
Same. I always say I’m autistic but I do like the word aspie and use that as well sometimes but if you asked me what I was, and even if you didn't, I’ll tell you anyway, and I always say I’m autistic.
I have read it, several times. I work with people who have epilepsy - but who aren't autistic. Just as I work with people who have epilepsy and are autistic. It's about the way the brain perceives, processes and responds to sensory information. Epilepsy in itself doesn't mean neurodiverse.
Dyslexia, ADHD, dyscalculia.... these are all conditions which autistic people may have. They are also conditions that non-autistic people may have.
Perhaps this can explain it better than I can:
What does it mean to be neurotypical?
I agree that we shouldn't assume things about others when we don't know that person. I had a late diagnosis at 33 so know first hand what it feels like when people make the wrong assumptions about the way a mind works.
Ash, I have a strong dislike for the term Aspergers too and have only ever referred to myself as autistic.