NeuroDiversity – What is it and what does it mean

What is Neurodiversity - Learn about Neurodiversity and how it relates to autism, aspergers, pdd-nos and other similar diagnosis #autismparenting

Here at The Mom Kind, our goal is to help families embrace neurodiversity.   Having a neurodiverse family comes with its own set of dynamics, routines, and hurdles to overcome.

For our family, it means that one thing that triggers a meltdown (noise, lighting, sensory input, etc) in one child with autism can calm the other with autism.

Whether you are directly affected by a neurodiverse individual or not, there are many ways to help embrace neurodiversity.  Just as any other stigma is overcome, embracing neurodiversity starts with education.

Neurodiversity is the shortened term for neurological diversity. This term is the diversity of the human mind and all variations of cognitive functioning.

This covers Autism Spectrum Disorder (Asperger’s, Autism, PDD-NOS), Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, Bipolar Disorder, Dyslexia, Dysplasia, and others.

In Layman’s terms:  We all know that skin tone, hair color, and eye color are all normal variances of people.  Just like biodiversity, and like cultural diversity, neurodiversity is an acceptance that all neurological status are also normal variances.   It is about accepting our differences and finding ways to work together.

Neurodiversity Movement

The Neurodiversity movement is an international civil rights movement that helps to promote self-advocacy of neurodiverse individuals.  The largest influencing group of this campaign is the autism rights movements. The Neurodiversity Movement was started by autistic individuals who stood to oppose the idea that autism and other such disorders are something to be cured.

Those who advocate for neurodiversity work to have neurodiverse individuals involved can live their lives as they are instead of changing to societal norms and ideals.

Neurodiverse Families

The core focus of neurodiverse families is to celebrate the strength and abilities of each family member.  Though there are families that contain primarily neurotypical individuals and one non-neurotypical, it is nor the majority.  Most families that have one neurodiverse family member, normally have others as well (sometimes with very different diagnosis!).  Let’s use our family as an example:

I was diagnosed with Bipolar disorder and recently discovered I myself have Asperger’s.  My husband was diagnosed with ADD as a child.  We have four children in our home.  His oldest has been diagnosed with bipolar disorder.  Our oldest together is ADHD, our middle daughter has Autism and ADHD, and our toddler son has Autism.  We are a VERY neurodiverse family

Embracing Neurodiversity

Parents and Caregivers who embrace neurodiversity can stop looking for a cure or reason, and start working on encouraging their children strengths and help balance working with the weaknesses. Instead of having your child conform to other’s standards, you’re able to help them achieve success in their lives.

Many neurodiverse children (and adults) are reminded so often of the limitations surrounding their diagnosis.  An unintentional outcome of this is these children rarely get the chance to achieve.  When you are told what you can’t do, you stop listening and sometimes stop trying to do what you’re capable of doing.  Once families embrace neurodiversity, they’re able to let go of the disease/disorder mindset and focus on the abilities.

Giving up the mindset of looking for a cure does not mean you are giving up on your child!   Instead, by looking at the world through their eyes, you are able to help them even more!  You would be amazed at how much my children have taught me about emotions and conversations simply by seeing things from their perspective!

Neurodiverse Individuals Changing The World, For The Better

You may have heard of Temple Grandin before now, but there are many in history that had recorded autistic and adhd characteristics long before these became diagnosis.  Albert Einstein was one of those such individuals.  Hailed as one of the great scientist of modern history, Einstein was said to have difficulties with social interactions, school, and tactile sensitivities.  Other’s suspected by historical documentation to have had Autism are the likes of Michelangelo, Amadeus Mozart, Nikola Tesla, Marie Curie, and many more!  Imagine if someone had tried to “cure” any of these greats?  Our world would be extremely different from where it is now!

The Mom Kind

Learning to balance everyone needs can be hard.  Now add in the fact that every child can benefit from different parenting styles, it can be overwhelming at best!  That’s where the concept of our site came into play.

Many families like ours have their unique struggles.  With all the therapy, counseling, school, sports, church, and day-to-day life, it is hard to keep up!  Our goal here is to provide logical parenting advice as well as ease the burden of daily struggles.  These include some of the same advice as every household has.  Things like organizing tips, recipes, ways to relieve financial burdens, self-help, and more.

Since there are never enough hours in the day, we wanted to provide all these tips in one place.  One website dedicated to parents and caregivers just like you.  Because let’s face it, when you are hiding in the bathroom for some peace and quiet, you don’t have time to scroll through multiple websites!

THIS POST MAY CONTAIN AFFILIATE LINKS. PLEASE READ MY DISCLOSURE FOR MORE INFO.
By TheMomKind

Alicia Trautwein is an Autism advocate, writer, motivational speaker, and dedicated mom of four. Alicia’s desire to advocate for Autism comes from her own autism diagnosis and that of her three children, niece, and brother. Her life’s mission is to educate on autism acceptance and change the world for future generations of autistic individuals.

18 Comments

  • Kaity | With Kids and Coffee -

    Thank you so much for writing on neurodiversity! Education on the subject is such a key to creating a culture that’s accepting, and I loved everything you said here.

  • What a cool post to educate and bring awareness to this growing topic. Many families struggle here in silence and without the support they desperately need. We need more people like you!

  • What a great place to share with others who have the same struggles. We know lots of kids with autisim so very useful

  • This is really great. I had never even considered this kind of issue as I don’t know anyone with autism personally. But, watching that new show on Netflix, Atypical and what they did for the school dance, it really made me aware of these issues.

  • TheMomKind -

    Yes, I love that the new Netflix show is bringing awareness about autism in everyday life.

  • Claudia Krusch -

    My friend has two neurodiverse children. They are both on the Autism spectrum and are very different. There are a lot of things that will trigger one yet soothe the other.

  • Thanks for discuss such wonderful topic. Now I can see neurodiversity in another perspective. They are all humans and absolutely able to achieve success.

  • Thank you for writing about embracing neurodiversity. We all are unique and should not have to conform. When we do it only limits our potential. The more accepting we are of each other the more we can help each other live up to our full potential!

  • I can’t relate much with the topic, but I am glad to read your post and catch a bit. It is nice to learn a new topic.

  • This post is wonderful and I admire your strenghth and positivity towards neurodiversity in general. I now how hard it must be in your shoes, I admire people like you.

  • I absolutely love this post! I love when you talk about embracing neurodiverse individuals. I understand and have seen first hand how people are always trying to fix and change those who are rather than embracing their talents and strengths! This is a topic a lot of people don’t know a lot about, I admire that you have opened the doorway to get people thinking! Thanks for sharing!

  • This is a really important topic that needs to be addressed more so that people understand it and learn from it. Thank you for sharing.

  • 8 Key Things to Know About Autism Spectrum Disorder -

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