ABA is abuse… yes all ABA.
The ultimate objective of ABA is to make the Autistic child indistinguishable from their peers. This holds NeuroDivergent People to NeuroTypical standards, which is cruel and sets us up for failure.
We are not and will never be NeuroTypical – ignoring this fact helps nobody.
ABA’s messaging suggests that natural Autistic ways of doing things are wrong and you are broken, and therefore must be corrected – that the Autistic Person is broken and must be molded to be more palatable to non-Autistic people.
This harms Autistic people’s sense of pride and identity.
ABA forces, autistic people to communicate, socialize, regulate, and move in ways that are unnatural and sometimes even uncomfortable in order to ease the lives of people around them or make them more attractive to their peers.
ABA teaches Autistic People that their own needs are less important than pleasing and making people around them comfortable. Making us overly compliant, leaving us more vulnerable to manipulation and abuse.ABA teaches children by rewarding them for “acceptable behaviors” – regardless of if these behaviors are natural or even comfortable for the autistic child.
For example, let’s take eye contact. As an Autistic person, eye contact can feel like a very intimate experience (an experience that I wouldn’t feel comfortable sharing with someone I did not know very well). Forcing me to make eye contact with a stranger can make me feel very uncomfortable almost as if they’re looking at me in my underwear. We wouldn’t and ask a child to let an adult touch them in a way that made them uncomfortable.
ABA teaches Autistic people that it’s okay if you are uncomfortable, as long as you are pleasing other people.The goal for autistic people should be to help them express and get their needs met, not to teach them that their needs are less valid than the needs of people around them.
Even the sales pitch, ABA uses as manipulative, ABA uses fear mongering tactics to scare parents into unnecessary early interventions for Autistic children.
They scare parents by telling them all the things their kid may never do because they are Autistic and set up ABA as the only solution to the “problems” of having an Autistic child.
They guilt trip parents. They claim that you need to start ABA as soon as possible to give Autistic children the best chance at life and if you don’t do ABA, they’re going to make you out to be a bad parent, because you “must not want the best for your child.”
ABA is expensive. I poked around online for just a few minutes and I found a bunch of different prices that range from $15,000 a year to $50,000 a year.
Services can cost from $100 to $120 an hour. And so if a family is even paying for 10 hours a week, that’s easily $1000 a week, times 50 if we give the kids a couple of weeks off in the year, that’s $50,000 right there for just 10 hours a week of ABA.
Some kids are in ABA for 40 hours a week or more on top of school or during school. These poor kids have no childhood. They are constantly under this behavior modification framework and the costs for Autistic Conversion Therapy can be astronomical over an Autistic Person’s lifetime, when there are better things parents could spend their money on that would actually help their child, instead of this horrible abusive manipulative “therapy”.
Autistic people do not need therapy just for being Autistic. If you want to help your Autistic child and you are being pressured into ABA therapy, please remember the following:There is no way to know what your child will be capable of as an adult.
Don’t let anyone pressure you into something you’re not comfortable with and may regret in the future.
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