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ABA: Applied Behavior Analysis

Many adults with autism experienced ABA as children. In the past, practitioners often used negative reinforcement to achieve the behaviors they deemed “normal”. For the children, it was often torture. Restraints, electroshock, physical punishment, and other techniques have been a part of ABA treatments. Neurodiverse people ask why the behaviors need to be “normalized”? Does flapping or not making eye contact injure anyone? Or, are those who advocate ABA imposing an unnecessary normalcy upon those on the spectrum? Current treatment focuses on rewards “good” behaviors, but it still remains a burning issue in the adult autistic community. Psychology Today Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) is a type of therapy that focuses on improving specific behaviors, such as social skills, communication, reading, and academics as well as adaptive learning skills, such as fine motor dexterity, hygiene, grooming, domestic capabilities, punctuality, and job competence. ABA is effective for children and adults with psychological disorders in a variety of settings, including schools, workplaces, homes, and clinics. It has also been shown that consistent ABA can significantly improve behaviors and skills and decrease the need for special services.

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Neurotypical, as a specific term for its original purpose within autistic communities, has been replaced by some with allistic, or “nypical”, which has roughly the same meaning that “neurotypical” had originally. (Wikipedia)

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Aspergers Syndrome

Asperger syndrome (AS), also known as Asperger’s, is a developmental disorder characterized by significant difficulties in social interaction and nonverbal communication, along with restricted and repetitive patterns of behavior and interests. As a milder autism spectrum disorder (ASD), it differs from other ASDs by relatively normal language and intelligence. Although not required for diagnosis, physical clumsiness and unusual use of language are common. Signs usually begin before two years old and typically last for a person’s entire life. (Wikipedia) Aspergers Syndrome is a subtype of autism. It is no longer used as a diagnosis. In its original form, it was applied to individual who were able to function in “normal” society, albeit they were often viewed as odd, weird, eccentric, etc.

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