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The Medical Model of Disability and Autism & The Importance of Neurodiversity Affirming Practices for Autistics

Posted by Krystie Yeo on

The medical model of disability is an approach that has been used for years to try and "fix" autistic people. This model targets the differences in characteristics between autistic people and neurotypicals, and aims to correct them.

However, this approach has led to nearly 50 years of autistic masking, burnout and extremely high rates of mental illness in the autistic community.

How does the Medical Model of Disability Affect Autistic People?


The medical model of disability leads to a lot of negative consequences for autistic people.

One of these consequences is called "autistic masking."

Autistic masking is when an autistic person suppresses their true selves in order to conform to neurotypical standards. This can be extremely exhausting and lead to a lot of burnout.

In addition, the high rates of mental illness in the autistic community can also be attributed to the medical model of disability.

This is because the constant pressure to conform to neurotypical standards is not only exhausting, but also deeply damaging to one's mental health.

The medical model of disability is an outdated approach that needs to be reconsidered.

The pressure that it puts on autistic people to conform to neurotypical standards is not only unrealistic, but also harmful.

If we want to create a more inclusive world for all, we need to start by changing the way we view differences.

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