Thread: I’m going to put a trigger warning on this for attempted suicide, but is good news. A couple days ago, I announced to Twitter what had been told to me: that someone I cared about profoundly had died from suicide. He was an autistic 22-year-old.
That was what the family was told. He had tried to save someone from an abusive situation, but it resulted in him being shunned and scolded and written off as a troublemaker. But what he did was brave and heroic, which I’d been saying daily. I was afraid this would happen.
But, and my details are incomplete right now, he is ALIVE. What happened (I think. Will confirm) was he was on a ventilator for his family to say goodbye, but he continued to breathe when they took him off the vent. He was triaged for 18 hours, & finally his vitals stabilized.
But he was in a coma, and it was inconclusive if he would be able to survive or if he would have pervasive brain damage. This morning, he came out of the coma and was just able to send a text to my childcare worker. He is glad he is alive.
The events that preceded his attempt are going to be extremely familiar to autistic people. We break the status quo and make waves when it’s the right thing to do, and breaking the status quo is dangerous. It almost always means that we will experience scorn and shunning.
But he wasn’t wrong. Everyone else was. You can’t fathom the despair someone feels when everyone around you treats you like you’re insane, ridiculous, or a nuisance when you try to do the right thing. I’m so glad he survived. I have permission to send a care package.
Like many (probably most) adult autistics, he has an intense special interest and is not active in the community. That’s totally okay, but it would be so wonderful if he and everyone else knew we were out here, & they’re not alone. Does anyone have suggestions for a care package?
I’ll try to alert the people who interacted with the other thread of the good news.

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More from @NeuroClastic

21 Nov
I want to apologize for my responses to the Sia movie. Nonspeakers had replied, but I didn't see it. It was erasing their input by asking people to listen to them. I also should have used my personal account and not the publication account. (cont)
My personal perspectives are very affected by my experiences & are not universal among our contributors. I am really sad for all the constant pain & erasure & misrepresentation autistic people experience. I definitely don't ever want to invalidate any of that. We deserve better.
I (Terra Vance) will do better to use my personal account to respond to things that are not an issue that is pretty universal among our contributors and apologize for not doing that. I made mistakes and missed things that were relevant to inform a full and fair reaction.
Read 4 tweets
21 Nov
I want to clarify a few points about my thread about the Sia movie because I think in my long thread, I still wasn't clear enough on a few points. I'll try to condense them to one thread at a time.
1. I wanted the point of the thread to be about how we as a community were addressing the issue was often using talking points and language that doesn't reflect the best language for nonspeaker rights.
2. Many of the things said about Sia were things that are tacitly ableist and can cause harm.
Read 17 tweets
21 Nov
I’m having a hard time with the discussion about the movie, Music, written and directed by @Sia. First, everyone is referencing NonSpeakers as “non-verbal.” NonSpeakers are nonspeaking because they are apraxic, and that means they can’t coordinate their movements to speak.
They often also can’t coordinate their bodies. They do things without being able to control themselves. Asking them to act in a movie where they have to do very complex ordered tasks would be overwhelming.
It can take a NonSpeaker a week to write an article because of the difficulty of spelling to communicate. But when we publish articles by nonspeakers, nobody reads or shares them. They are our lowest traffic demographic despite that I put 10x more effort in promoting them.
Read 32 tweets
7 Oct
Let me explain why autistic people may perform better with robots. It’s not their “Easy to read” social cues, it’s because they’re honest and predictable. They aren’t going to give an exasperated sigh or treat us like we’ve verbally assaulted them by expressing a need (cont)
They’re not going to call us into the office and tell us they have “concerns” because they misinterpreted our responses. We aren’t going to find after six months of mistreatment that someone has been harboring a grudge because they misunderstood OUR subtext. (Cont)
They won’t assemble in groups in the break room and stop talking when we walk in. They aren’t going to think we are angry at them if we don’t wrap every instruction up in platitudes or remind them they’re a good person if we need to ask them to do something differently. (Cont)
Read 21 tweets
7 Oct
@NSF @VanderbiltU @Cornell @Yale @GeorgiaTech This is the most disrespectful and dehumanizing thing I’ve ever seen, and that’s a high bar. Somebody needs to do a survey of autistic suicidal ideation after reading about this. Disgusting.…
I assure you that our ability to tolerate suffering is monastic already and that your testing of our patience is already a Sisyphean marathon you can’t fathom. Maybe the reason we are underemployed is because your nonsense is a parody straight out of Swift’s Laputa.
To be autistic is to be the narrator in Gulliver’s Travels. There are not enough words to express how abjectly fucked this is. You want us to act like human beings? Start with treating us that way.
Read 11 tweets
9 Sep
Today is day three of Suicide Prevention Week, and we are continuing the #NoDejahVu campaign by posting daily with articles and social media posts focused on suicide prevention. We need you to help! (cont) Image description: LGBTQ Youth have much higher rates of sui
Of all the factors related to suicide, no lists suggest that "being loved, embraced, respected, and accepted" contributes. Being dismissive, embarrassed, or judgemental of people's personal truth and way of existing, their very identity, devastates them. (cont)
Lack of acceptance contributes to why so many LGBTQ+ youth consider, attempt to, or do end their own lives. Teachers, parents, friends, classmates, grandparents-- respect & accept those in your life for where and who they are.

And, we need everyone's help! (cont)
Read 9 tweets

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