last thing I want to say about the sia mess before I go do fun things – let’s talk about internalized abelism and gatekeeping, in the #ActuallyAutistic community! Especially if you are late diagnosed like me, you’ve probably have been and are often still ableist. A thread
that sucks to hear when you first read it, doesn’t it? I know it did when I first realised it myself. But after years of only “knowing” a community via bad rep in media, via stories others who are ableist told about them, there are bound to be ideas in your head that are harmful.
And here is the kicker – you can be ableist without any malicious intent. I certainly had none, I wanted the best for everyone and still do. But I was, and still am, ill informed. And that’s not a one time thing, you can’t just realise you are ableist and stop.
You have to work on educating yourself and that’s gonna be a lifelong project, even if you are in the autisitc or disability community yourself. And it’s very tempting to hide behind your own disability, but it’s your responsibility to do better, for yourself and others.
And while you can’t just shake internalized abelism over night, what you can do instantly is sit back and listen. Try to get as many perspectives of members of the autisitc and disability community as you can – listen critcialy and with compassion
Because some of the things said will make you go “No but that’s harsch I don’t do that”, they’ll make you feel like you gotta defend yourself. And yes, you should stand up for yourself , but I urge you to first listen harder, bc it might be your internalized abelism speaking
And I’m still bad at it too, I hear that voice all too often, bc I’ve had my experiences questioned and gaslit so many times in my life that my first reaction is often anger and defense, but within our community we owe it to each other and ourselves to do better than that
Especially if some of the discourse within the community might stem from our own internalized abelism. There are so many of us and we are all so different and gatekeeping labels, definitions or words instead of trying to learn from each other is not going to get us anywhere
Your internalized abelism is not your fault, but it’s your responsibility to work through and unlearn. It’s not an excuse for shitty behavior either, on the contrary, being aware about your own biases should be the catalist for more listening, apologies and compassion.
Anywyas, that being said, this was a gentle reminder aimed at the autistic community and not meant to excuse any of Sia’s behavior bc while she def has some internalized abelism to work through, rn she’s just being a shitty person under any definition lol