The Difference Between the Autism Community & the Autistic Community


Hi everyone.  I’m Christa, the Neurodivergent Rebel.  I was diagnosed autistic at the age of 29, and finding the autistic community really changed my life.  And, I want to be very clear and say the autistic community, because the autistic community is very different from the “autism community.”

This week I wanted to explain to everyone how those two communities differ very greatly.

The autistic community is the community of autistic people themselves.  If you are not autistic, you are not a member of the autistic community – I’m sorry – because you, by definition, are not autistic.

The autism community is very different, and it includes parents of autistic people who are not autistic themselves.  It includes medical professionals, therapists, doctors, and people who support and regularly work with autistic people.

People in the “autism community” not the autistic community may be (hopefully!) our allies of autistic people, but they are themselves not autistic.

And one would hope that the autism community of non-autistic people were great allies to the autistic community, but unfortunately, a lot of autistic people are nervous when they hear people refer to themselves as part of the autism community, because we worry that a lot of people in that community sometimes take advantage of autistic people.

We’ve got medical “professionals” and people peddling therapies and other things.  We’ve got lots of people talking about autistics in the autism community; whereas the autistic community is autistics trying really hard to speak with whatever communication methods we use for ourselves.

So those are the differences between the autism community and the autistic community.  I myself am part of the autistic community, although these two communities do overlap and intersect.

Alrighty guys, thank you so much for hanging out with me this week.  Talk to you next time.  Bye!




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3 thoughts on “The Difference Between the Autism Community & the Autistic Community

  1. Hi there! Thanks so much for sharing this! I’m part of the autism community. My toddler son was recently diagnosed. As a mother of a child in the autistic community I find the experiences of autistic adults so valuable in helping me be the best mom I can be to my son. Recently my husband and I were discussing that he believes he may be autistic. Can you direct us in what steps we should take to find out? Thanks in advance!

  2. Interesting point of view and I can both agree — but there is more weight behind my disagreeing with you…and I claim the later because of your primary point of the autistic community for autistics only — that is an important point of what you say, but.

    The autistic community, if it is to grow and become understood, it cannot become insular, that is fine for the individual if they seek it. But the ‘community’ is that community. It is a mix of all people. And I would suggest that there are many who wish to know about communicating with autists on their own level. In a safe environment.
    Autists have been dominated by fear sometimes and that fear is what stops them from thriving. Trust is a huge bond and if in protecting the individual we throw the baby out with the bathwater, nothing is serviced here.
    The knowledge gained in a community is good for all — how are we to break myths and misconceptions in the community is close to teaching the world what autists think of themselves and the outer world they inhabit.

    Granted there are unmentionables that suffer us mate crimes, but the experience will fix that, and autistics have to live in this world with all others of diversity. They have to learn to recognize the ones who take advantage of our graces.

    Polarity is killing the world, there is a detriment in neuro tribes that separate itself from the greater whole. Neurotypicals (such a horrible term) are not the enemy. Isolation and fear are…

    This is how secret societies are formed and really exclusion is unconstitutional by all people’s rights. Freedom is a serious matter…freedom for all.

  3. The Autistic community, if it is to grow and become understood, it cannot become insular, that is fine for the individual if they seek it. But the ‘community’ is that community. It is a mix of all people.

    Like the Black community, amirite? (-_Q)

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