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My life is a crazy, unpredictable, jumbled mess of fun. Each day creating adventures and stories that will last a lifetime 

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Star Trek and Autism?

A few months ago on one of the Autism pages on Facebook (no clue which one) I and my BFF answered a question.

The question was, "Are there any movies or tv shows that show an Autistic or Asspie type person learning to interact with those around them?"

Answer came pouring in, by the time I read through and responded I was somewhere in the hundreds of comments. I had read most of the answers before me and had been disheartened by what I read.

Instead of ANSWERING her question, they were simply naming movies that had an Autistic person in them.
For multiple reasons this doesn't actually mean that they are showing How that person Interacted with others. There are a few that show interaction, but not many.

I had to think HOW to answer without making people mad, and giving the person the answer they were seeking.
It went something like this, "To see long term social interaction I recommend watching Star Trek. Data, 7 of 9 and Spock all had to learn to "fit" in with those they didn't fully understand. Both Data and 7 of 9 had to learn social cues, facial response and recognition, humor and each found friendship."

Farther down the list I had a few that praised my thinking of the series and how it would relate as they had only been thinking of those with the large labeled A on them.

For a week now a letter has been sitting in my inbox from a mother who read my post and took it to heart for her then 13 year old son. I told my BFF last night about the response and she encouraged me to "Blog it" as it might benefit more out there who didn't read the one day conversation.

To respect names and privacy I will be rewording and shortening her response leaving out names and other personal details.

To T-
Thank you so much for your response to the question (see above). I and my son have literally watched hundreds of movies since that conversation and out of all of them, your recommendation was the best.
My son J liked the movies about him, but didn't learn much about interacting. Until Star Trek. I want you to know that his 14th birthday party was a Star Trek bash including 4 "new" friends from school.
His favorite person on the shows (so far) is Data. He loves how while Data does try to learn, he gains acceptance from those around him by not pretending to be like them, but simply by being himself.
Thank you for understanding the question that someone else asked, I don't know if your response helped them but it has helped my son J.

Respectfully S-

So for those out their with children heading into teen-hood or already there that might help seeing someone "similar" to them, learning how to interact, make friends and find acceptance for who they are. I recommend the series. Best part is that they are a cleaner show, low sexual situations and language.

You might end up with a Trekkie on your hands, but if they are standing in line dressed up as Data NEXT to their best friend it might be worth it.

Star Trek The Next Generation - Data - Male sentient robot.
Star Trek Voyager - 7 of 9 - Female human turned and raised as a machine then brought back into humanity.
Star Trek Original Series - Spock - a Vulcan who represses emotions and lives and thrives on Logic
If your on a budget you can get a disk at a time through Netflix.

I am also making a page up at the top of my blog linking all of my Autism rants into one area for those that follow my blog for the occasional rant, and so if you need to refer someone to one of the rants it will be easier. :)
Also I still need people to support my Walk for Autism - please click the blue thermometer on the side of my page!

As always each person on the spectrum is vastly different I know that what advice I am giving will only affect a percentage. However, its nice to look outside the box and find things that may help.

Hope everyone is having a great and wonderful day!
The sun is calling me and I am going to go play in dirt now!


Tired Mom said...

Very awesome!!! =D

Dawn Marie said...

I am glad that you heard her question, and gave a well thought out response. I'm sure that she will appreciate it, after reading through all of those comments of course.
I would also think that Bones character on TV would be another example. She is learning how to be friends with people and learning how to read body language, she is an intellectual that does not process emotion the same as the others on her team. She is trying to learn, and in the process her demeanor and manners have changed and softened a bit through the seasons.

Blessed Rain said...

Dawn Marie - True and I do love Bones but its not always a young teen that does not understand everything can watch. I would recommend that more for an adult crowd. ;)

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