Research Question: How can we get society to understand Neurodiversity?
What do ASD and ADHD have in common? More than you might think. ASD and ADHD are neurodevelopment disorders which means in some way, the brain has been affected. Conditions/disorders like these made an affect on the central nervous system which is responsible for things like movement, language, memory, and social and focusing skills. Autism Spectrum Disorder and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder are also part of something bigger called Neurodiversity. Many people are more familiar with the umbrella term called Neurodivergent. We are going to decipher learning disability and ADHD because of a relationship between them. According to the VeryWellMind, “Many people with ADHD can struggle with learning and schoolwork because of the executive function problems related to their ADHD, yet they do not have enough of an impairment to be diagnosed with an LD.” Now that we have touched on that, the biggest issue of them all is getting society to understand Neurodiversity as there are misconceptions and social constructs are in play. People who are Neurodiverse aren’t less than their Neurotypical counterparts. Young adults need to know this so they don’t harm those who are Neurodiverse.
Let’s talk about the origin of the word “Neurodiversity.” The term is coined in the late 1990s by Judy Singer who came up with it despite being on the spectrum of autism refuted that people with autism are disabled. Some conditions like ADHD and autism are not “abnormal” but differences in the brain which people often misconstrue. There are kids with learning and thinking differences, so this concept can benefit them. This can help kids frame their challenges as differences and not be thought of as deficits. Neurodiversity is based around science and brain study that kids with learning and thinking differences apart from their peers, those differences appear based on how the brain is “wired.” The view on Neurodiversity should be that brain differences are normal. Activists in the autism community were embraced by this term, and since then advocates have been fighting the stigma and promote inclusions in schools and workplaces. To rid the thought that something is “wrong” with people who are Neurodiverse, communities should engage with those people for not be stigmatic. By doing this communities are building up those with Neurodiverse conditions confidence, self-esteem, and motivation.
For the most part we use technology throughout our day. As the hbr.org would say, “Neurodiverse people frequently need workplace accommodations, such as headphones to prevent auditory overstimulation, to activate or maximally leverage their abilities. Sometimes they exhibit challenging eccentricities. In many cases the accommodations and challenges are manageable and the potential returns are great. But to realize the benefits, most companies would have to adjust their recruitment, selection, and career development policies to reflect a broader definition of talent.” Technology plays a huge role in school and work environment. To communicate with individuals there’s a phone at their hand or sending an E-Mail through a computer because it is doubtful that people nowadays write letters. Speaking of traditional to modern times it was very true that reading and writing are essential for school and jobs, but there are people who just can’t do that and that shouldn’t be anything to be ashamed of because in school there are teachers to help the student out by using different method, so the student can understand what is going on and the same thing applies in the work environment.
However, Neurodivergency is complicated which shows limitations. As stated in the hbr.org article, “Especially in large companies, HR processes are developed with an eye toward wide application across the organization. But there is a conflict between scalability and the goal of acquiring neurodiverse talent. “SAP focuses on having scalable HR processes; however, if we were to use the same processes for everyone, we would miss people with autism,” says Anka Wittenberg, the company’s chief diversity and inclusion officer. In addition, the behaviors of many neurodiverse people run counter to common notions of what makes a good employee—solid communication skills, being a team player, emotional intelligence, persuasiveness, salesperson-type personalities, the ability to network, the ability to conform to standard practices without special accommodations, and so on. These criteria systematically screen out neurodiverse people.” This is very harmful and neglatory because it shows me that Neurodiverse people can be excluded. Being talented can happen to anyone whether it you’re Neurodivergent or Neurotypical, but media implies that ND’s are outcasts. An example of exclusion was the artist Sia, she made a movie called ‘Music’ and it was about the a girl named Music who’s navigating through life as well as being on the autism spectrum. Then again, many people who are Neurodivergent expressed their thoughts especially on Twitter targeting Sia for being exclusive with the casting, because she casted Maddie Ziegler who is able-bodied and Neurotypical as star of the lead role. Neurodivergent folks were infuriated on how many ticks or simulations were stereotypical portrayals of autism. All the more, Neurodivergent people deserve a chance to shine as many Neurotypical’s and shouldn’t be limited despite being talented.
In addition to all this talk about autism we are going to discuss on a neurological disorder that is ADHD. Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder (ADHD) is one of the common neurological and mental disorders affects children as well as many adults. Some symptoms include inattention, hyperactivity, and impulsivity. Here is Tammy’s story on psychiatry.org, “Tammy, an 8-year-old third grader, was halfway through the second grading period when her parents asked for another conference with her teacher. Her grades were very low with failure to complete class assignments and inconsistent performance on homework… A decision was made for treatment with stimulant medication. Tammy had an expected response. She was especially pleased when she was moved to a higher reading group and she was picked for her school basketball team. Her medication was tailored for school time since her evening and weekend behaviors were not a problem.” By reading this story I can infer that many folks who “suffer” with this mental disorder makes people inpatient with them will make the person who has Attention Deficit Hyper Disorder feel worse about themselves and that’s something you don’t want to do. People who have ADHD don’t want to be declined by anyone. Already they feel like a burden to their family, friends, and peers. It’s important for everyone to be equal because we all fight for equality in society, so why are people with ADHD or other mental disorders unintentionally considered less? The root of my research question is getting society to realize that people who are Neurodiversity can still be in the workforce, can go to school, can do things a “normal” person can, etc.
Work Cited Page:
Source: Team, The Understood. “Neurodiversity: What You Need to Know.” Understood, Understood, 23 Feb. 2021, www.understood.org/en/friends-feelings/empowering-your-child/building-on-strengths/neurodiversity-what-you-need-to-know.
Source: “Understanding Neurodiversity and Its Impact on Disability Perceptions.” All Belong, 26 Aug. 2015, allbelong.org/understanding-neurodiversity-and-its-impact-on-disability-perceptions/.
Source: “Neurodiversity Is a Competitive Advantage.” Harvard Business Review, 18 July 2017, hbr.org/2017/05/neurodiversity-as-a-competitive-advantage.
Source: Sinfield, Jacqueline. “Is ADHD a Learning Disability?” Verywell Mind, 21 Jan. 2021, www.verywellmind.com/is-adhd-a-learning-disability-4116126.
Source: “Tammy’s Story.” Patient Story: ADHD, www.psychiatry.org/patients-families/adhd/patient-story.
Source: What Is ADHD?, www.psychiatry.org/patients-families/adhd/what-is-adhd.
Cited in MLA Format