Vancouver, Canada — Storytelling activist Rosie King celebrated autism in her TED talk, challenging the way our society today looks at ‘normal’.
King, who diagnosed herself with Asperger’s when she was nine years old, talked about how her autism has ‘freed’ her and allowed her to be creative.
The 16-year-old TED speaker’s self-diagnosis of Asperger’s, which stemmed from a book about the condition that she read, was also confirmed by doctors in the same year.
In her speech from November of last year, King explained why autism should be celebrated. She told:
“Imagine that was the best compliment you ever received, ‘Wow you are really normal’.”
“But compliments are: ‘You are extraordinary, or you step outside the box, [or] you are amazing.’ If people want to be these things, why are so many people striving to be normal? Why are people pouring their brilliant, individual light into a mold?”
King also criticized society’s stereotyping of individuals with autism spectrum disorder, saying that not everyone who falls under the diagnosis is the same. She told that, “people tend to diagnose autism with really specific checkbox descriptions, but in reality there’s a whole variation as to what we’re like.” She further went on to explain that her younger brother is severely autistic and is non-verbal, whereas she loves to talk. She also explained that there is a common misconception around the assumption that autistic people are good at math and science, at the exclusion of everything else, ” but I know so many autistic people who love being creative.”
Source: Lecia Buskak: Medical Daily: TED Speaker Rosie King Explains How Autism ‘Freed’ Her To Be Herself And Allowed Her To Be Creative