April: Autism Awareness Month. Light it up blue. Solve the puzzle of autism. Raise money for people with autism.
I’ve written about all of it before. In this short article I’m going to do something different.
Most autistic people do not support the celebration of Autism Awareness Month. There are a lot of reasons why, and the autistic community has come up with some excellent things people can participate in during April instead of awareness campaigns. Many autistic people, and non-autistic friends and family of autistic people, celebrate Autism Acceptance Month. There are lots and lots of articles published already that explain why awareness is problematic, how some of the most popular awareness campaigns are harmful, and how people can support autistic folks better than mindlessly joining the loudest group of voices.
So, this is the article in which the tired autistic person says, “actually, I’m done explaining it to you all, here are some links, please go and do the reading and learn why it is that so many autistic people rebel against the concept of ‘Autism Awareness’ and don’t support campaigns like ‘Light it up blue’.”
What is wrong with Autism Awareness?
a list of articles I have written about “awareness”
Here is a list of articles about autism awareness and autism acceptance written by other autistic authors
April, Autism, and Allies, by Nick Walker
Toxic Autism Awareness, by Judy Endow at Ollibean
Why acceptance, a video by Amythest Schaber
What is Autism Acceptance, by Lei at autistic times two
Why we are not puzzle pieces, by Renata Jurkevythz at Spectrum Women
Another Autism Awareness Month is Almost Here. Yay, by Morenike Giwa Onaiwu at Autism Women’s Network
Ally Paternalism in Autism Advocacy, at echolaliachamber
A is for Acceptance, at Autistic on Wheels
Autism Saved My Life, by Becca Lorry at Spectrum Women
Acceptance as a wellbeing practice, at Musings of an Aspie
What should we do instead of participating in Autism Awareness activities?
Easy! Do what autistic people ask you to do. Support autistic run campaigns and promote articles written by autistic people.
The autistic community has some great alternate options you can promote if you want to support autistic people during April:
Tone it down taupe (this is a Facebook page that uses satire to show the problems with the light it up blue campaign)