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So, time to more thoroughly explain some of my positions here. Please share if you can.

First - why do I think ABA is abuse? /1 (takes a deep breath...)
Applied Behaviour Analysis is a form of training that is 'done to' some #autistic people in an attempt to modify their behaviour and 'help' them operate in a neurotypical environment. /2
It is heavily based around the concept of conditioning, whereby children are conditioned by rewards or sanctions to modify their habitual behaviours. This can be, for example, praising them for not stimming. /3
It could also take the dform of rewarding a child with a treat for maintaining eye contact, or making small talk, using please and thank you. It can vary in intensity but is frequently very intense, with long sessions over a period of time. /4
My issue with it stems from two directions. Firstly, poorly applied ABA can be extremely traumatic for autistic children and there are many reports of it being abusive and cruel - it's not hard to see how this might come about. /5
Secondly, even if ABA is somehow undertaken without the process itself being traumatic, then the desired result is, I think, inherently traumatic - masking. /6
The aim of ABA is ostensibly to allow autistic children to cope in society. This usually at least in part involves 'acting normal' in 'socially acceptable ways'. Trouble is, #Autistic people usually develop this naturally, and we call it masking. /7
We tend to mask (if we do it at all - it's not universal) as a defence mechanism, to avoid being bullied or worse. It's learned in childhood and often continues way into adulthood - pretending not to be autistic, usually subconsciously. /8
ABA simply formalises and externalises this imperative - it's forcible masking, forced upon the child by an authoritative figure, rather than self-learned at a natural pace. Now any kind of masking seems to be quite damaging. /9
It can lead to depression, burnout, even suicide. But if forced upon the child from an external source? Well, that's even worse, isn't it? It makes a removal of thd mask much harder. This could lead to extremely bad outcomes. /10
So whatever ABA is used, it'll cause damage. If it's applied badly, it'll be traumatising in the short term. If it actually 'works', it'll be traumatising in the medium and long term.

Therefore, it's not a good idea. /11
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