An Open Letter To Jim Carrey

Reblogging this because it’s good and it’s going to be a while before I finish my next big post. Sadly, Jim’s actions just further emphasize what I’m pointing out in the upcoming article. Also see Amy Sequenzia’s response to Jim Carrey here: https://twitter.com/AmySequenzia/status/618089534639742976

the fool on the hill

Dear Jim,

Normally one uses surnames for people they haven’t met, but given the appalling way you’ve just behaved and the ignorance you’ve displayed, I don’t have enough respect for you to bother.

Let’s get down to brass tacks.

I am an autistic adult, and I am angry.

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Delays and Coughs

Still have a big post in the works, pretty much got derailed by sickness following a convention, but that’s always a risk you take with large crowds. Kind of glad for the delay and downtime.  I’ve learned a lot more from JRC insiders and allies. I definitely didn’t do it justice IMHO.  Though what disturbs me the most is not JRC, but the reason it exists in the first place and why it continues to this day. You take the shocks out of the equation and it’s still a nightmare, only it’s one that is happening all around the country needlessly.

Sorry for the lack of updates.

-Chris “Stargazer”

Major upcoming post

For any new visitors, please learn about The Judge Rotenberg Center, as an Autistic, that is what I am sounding the alarm about as well as the nationwide use of restraint and seclusion in schools, There’s a 27 minute documentary at stophurtingkids.com

My next topic is going to expand on that and talk about Autism Speaks.

I won’t be able to finish until I get home from my latest convention.  Until then, a few hints on the nature of the post can be found in these links.

http://www.forbes.com/sites/emilywillingham/2013/11/13/why-autism-speaks-doesnt-speak-for-me/

http://jerobison.blogspot.com/2013/11/i-resign-my-roles-at-autism-speaks.html

http://www.examiner.com/article/build-a-bear-ends-partnership-with-autism-speaks

Peace and Long Life,

-Chris “Stargazer”

Why I Left ABA

Working on a sizable post myself, but this article deserves special recognition.

This is such an important post for people to understand. I am an Autistic that grew up PTSD, hating myself for being broken. That lasted until I was 31, thankfully my parents had nothing to do with how I felt. I was not exposed to ABA, I was simply tormented by others for being the way I am. Not that different of an end result, and it is easy for me to empathize. I’ve had a lot of people that genuinely wanted to help try to “normalize” me instead of understand me or accept me as I am. I’m also working to try to get high profile allies to help shut down the The Judge Rotenberg Center, because it could have easily been me in that place.

My challenge to behaviorists is to forget the studies they automatically defer to, and rationalize it to the best of their ability in their own words without using those old studies as a crutch.

Check out where JRC is showing up now: http://autisticadvocacy.org/2015/05/asan-statement-on-jrc-at-association-for-behavior-analysis-international-conference/

Honestly, I don’t think much is going to change as long as Autism Speaks doesn’t change. Why on Earth are they not be sounding the alarm on JRC?

Socially Anxious Advocate

Trigger Warning: ABA, ableism, institutionalized child abuse

[Image Description: A bright red door with a brass knob and a faded mail slit. To its left, there is a long, dark windowpane with some decoration and smudges. The door itself has chips in its paint and markings on it, despite the bright color. It is closed, possibly locked.]

When I first became an ABA Therapist, I was thrilled. I was actually going to use my psych degree, get paid more than minimum wage, and above all, make a positive difference in Autistic children’s lives. Or at least, that’s what I thought.

Now I look back, and the year I spent working in ABA is my single greatest regret.

When I left, it wasn’t a decision I made overnight. It was a long, difficult process, full of denial and confusion. I don’t enjoy talking about it because I did so many wrong things that…

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Blog update and warning to new readers.

I haven’t updated this in a while, there are still many half written posts. There is too much going on at once.

I need warn any new readers that this blog is littered with my frustrations from being demoralized and feeling hopeless. I have made many mistakes with people. I’ve been going to places that aren’t really compatible with me. Being able to “pass for normal” isn’t a good thing when you’re not normal.

I hope to eventually write a book, explaining the connections, looking at why all of this horrible things are happening, why dehumanizing stigma that has become popular and accepted enables so much of this happen.

The person that encouraged me to start writing gave me better advice than I realized when he told me I should write a book. Blogs still have a very limited outreach despite being available for anyone to read at their leisure.

There are other things I’d rather be doing, but I feel I must do this. I don’t know if I can find a balance. Hopefully I will after I move. Finally escaping the sensory nightmare.

Blessings to all.

Peace and Long Life,
-Chris.

Excerpt: The Four Year Betrayal, when a best friend becomes a bully (and possibly kills your dog)

This is an excerpt from “Friendships without Borders“, don’t know why I put it in there really.

We’re talking teenagers, over 20 years ago, which generally don’t know better, but from what I’ve seen, there are lots of adult teenagers and children out there these days.
This probably doesn’t belong in this article, but hey, it’s my personal blog. I consider it part of the reason I seek a more honest and enlightened world, I may edit this out later and throw it in another post.
This will be the third childhood friend I’ve mentioned in this article, the first was my unconditional black friend, the second was my “creative” friend who planned the skits for our home movies. We’ll call this third one the “troubled” friend.

During my personal childhood hell, I had a friend that turned out to be very troubled. Apparently his parents and teachers could not see the signs. Just as teachers could not see my suffering either, same school.
He was one of those overly social types that made friends with everyone easily, including bullies. Very popular in school for reasons I never understood, and of course he was chasing down different girls all the time. He was a class clown.

He was mostly a good friend, we played video games, and he was in the home movies/skits I made with my “creative” friend. We even took him on vacation. He always seemed eager to please the “cool” kids who tended to be bullies or jocks. After several years of friendship, my family was once again moving to another state. We trusted him and his parents so much, that we entrusted them with watching our house while we were out of state looking for a place to live.

When my troubled friend learned this, he saw an opportunity to impress some of his older friends, who happened to be a couple of gang members that didn’t go to our school. They exploited his desire to please them, and decided to rob our house while we were gone. They weren’t too bright, they stole some of my collectibles, like rare trading cards and sold them and local comic shops. They also stole a briefcase with some papers inside that they thought were worthless and tossed into a creek, ruining them. Turns out they were the most valuable thing they stole, irreplaceable.

They were caught because a family member of my troubled friend found my belongings hidden in his room. The decision fell on me whether or not to press charges. Doing so meant I would have caused a lot of trouble for my troubled friend’s parents, who were good-natured people with good values. If I could have pressed charges against the older culprits only, I would have.

After the robbery, my troubled friend began coaching school bullies on how to really get to me on a personal level, which lead to one of the few times I actually started the fight.
On the day I was moving, My last dog suddenly became mysteriously ill. He was pretty healthy and still had plenty of years in him. By the time he reached the vet, he was all but gone. Still have his ashes, waiting to take him to a place that feels like “home”. Should have done an autopsy, because we suspected poison. After all, the bullies knew where I lived. That wouldn’t be the first time someone decided to murder one of my pets either, sadly. Another time.

I’ve learned to forgive, and have forgiven him. Looking back, I know he was troubled and needed help he wasn’t getting. I think he had too many friends, and was trying to keep them all happy. Popularity was his main concern. So he did something to impress his popular “bad ass gangsta” friends by sacrificing one awkward friend, me. Hope he got the right kind of help and didn’t lose his way.

So consider this a reminder my trust issues are not about “you”. They’re about all the different experiences I had that lead to PTSD. That includes daggers sticking out of my back from both foolish young peers and adults that should have been known better.

judge rotenberg center

Something has to change.

a diary of a mom

460x

In this Aug. 13, 2014, photo, a female student wearing a shocking device on her leg, lines up with classmates after lunch at the Judge Rotenberg Educational Center in Canton, Mass. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa) Source

What you are about to read and watch and hear will be extremely difficult to process. It’s horrifying. I’m asking you to read it anyway.

It’s necessary, because we need to understand that this is happening. Not in some far off country that we can claim no control over, but here, in our very own back yard.

Please read. Please watch. Please listen. And then, please, for the love of God, act.

This can’t continue.

“The first shock was in my leg. It was a stinging, ripping, and pulling pain that froze time. I was standing when it happened, and I immediately fell because I lost control of my leg. It hurt, but…

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Blog Addition: Added “Excerpts” to the Top Menu

Some of my recent writing has become chaotic, influenced by stress and frustration. I’ve got some sections in articles that don’t really belong or would make good stand alone short posts so I’m going to add them as excerpts every now and then.

I’ll have to reorganize this all eventually, right now I’m just worried about finishing half written articles. Though I also find myself wanting to rewrite everything.

-Stargazer

Blog update: Disability Underworld Rewrite coming eventually. 2014 Frustrations.

I feel like I tried to put too much into one page, and actually left some things out, like filicide(when a parent kills their child) and how all to often, the victim is blamed for their own murder.

I’m planning to break it into smaller posts.  I feel that’s the way to go in order to do these topics justice. I really want to nail the Restraint and Seclusion issue badly, because the Keeping All Students Safe Act (Here and Here) has once again died, it didn’t even make it past committee this time.  This is beyond immoral. Both Senators have retired, not good.

Disabled Lives Matter, but apparently the stigma is so much worse than I imagined,  in a time when people are seeking justice and equality more than ever, the double standards I’m seeing are so extreme that I think I’m living in the Twilight Zone.

My efforts traveling to conventions to raise awareness last year left me extremely frustrated and demoralized.  This has not helped with my depression,  that’s for sure.  I thought getting out and doing something would make a difference.

I keep putting my big anti-bullying post further behind even though it is more than halfway complete in order to write other posts because I’m so frustrated and feel the need to make some other points.  Bullying is at least getting a lot of attention already.

It is so utterly frustrating when people can’t read the amount of stress I am in from sensory overload.  I was starting to worry I could have a meltdown, which would have been the first in my adult life.

All I ask of people is to share links like the JRC petition or the recent interview with Jennifer, whom endured 7 years of torture at JRC.  Share stophurtingkids.com for the broader issue of Restraint and Seclusion.

Honestly, just sharing it on social media would make a difference, I’m not asking people to give money or join an organization, just point out that there are people speaking out, and not being heard.  It should be “Nothing About Us Without Us”  but the reality is “Everything About Us Without Us” like we don’t exist, as far as the general public is concerned.

Ask the same question, Why? Why is all of this happening? Why is the DOJ investigation silent after all these years? Why hasn’t the FDA banned shocks? Why is traumatizing and killing disabled kids in school not enough to get National Laws?

You can see the voices of many autistic people on the hashtag  #notmssng , which is in protest of the #mssng hashtag that implies we are missing somehow.

I know people are reading, but I can never tell if anyone is sharing anything. I know many are just as powerless as I am to raise this to a bigger audience. It’s not as if I’m the only one trying either.  So I may put up a poll at some point for curiosity’s sake.

Posts are in the works, but I’ve been busy being sick, going to doctors and planning my next trip, Wizard World Portland.  I’ve been having this strange balance issue that started at the Star Trek Convention I went to in San Francisco last month. The sensation of falling or being in an elevator going up most of the time, or sometimes going down. Fun stuff.

I share Leelah Alcorn’s final sentiment.  “Fix Society”.

-Chris “Stargazer”

Blog: Pondering this TED Talk on the importance of social connection, some other news.

Doesn’t bode well for me, 20ish years of social isolation for the most part.  “Worse than smoking”  etc.  Consciously I’ve mostly overcome the desire to be included and valued.  But I can’t say the same of subconsciously, might explain a great deal.  So many contributing overlapping factors it’s hard to tell.

Meanwhile I read this news about Seinfeld. http://www.autismdailynewscast.com/celebrity-autism-now-you-see-it-now-you-dont/19780/guest/

That’s extremely disheartening to see it created that much trouble for a celebrity to say something positive about Autism.  That’s part of the reason many people are suffering today.  I keep trying to find the strength to accept an isolated existence, and it depresses the hell out of me sometimes.

Meanwhile, the reports of CIA enhanced interrogation tactics have some striking similarities to what is considered “approved therapy” for people with Autism or other differences, disorders or illnesses. Locking children in dark rooms and leaving them there, with no bathroom, etc.  Beatings, Take downs. Forced stripping, forced to wear diapers, humiliation,  etc.

I can tell you being “warehoused” in school and neglected by teachers was not therapeutic for me.  Not nearly as bad as others are being treated today.  Still, I’m still living with it. It’s still part of me.

How do we end these nightmares? What prevents them from just becoming more secretive?

Out of town again, but still writing upcoming posts.