People First Language


Living la Vida Autistic

All throughout my college education the importance of people first language was pushed heavily. For those unfamiliar with the concept people first language is pretty simple. Instead of saying the autistic boy you should say the boy with autism. The idea is that the person is more than just their diagnosis.

When working with the ABA company, I disclosed my diagnosis to my supervisor. “I’m autistic,” I said. She tut-tutted me and said that I needed to use person first language. I replied that when speaking of a client I would always use person first language but when speaking for myself I would refer to myself as autistic. Because I am. Autism is a pervasive developmental disorder. It is always with me because it is me. Its in my brain and my sensory organs and every interaction I will ever have with anyone or anything. That’s not to say that…

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