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"People need to know"

Yes. People need to know about that stuff. It's also teachers and "therapists" that could benefit from this knowledge.

An example: one thing that NEVER worked was trying to "take" my special interests/obsessions away from me. I was homeschooled since the fifth grade but my mother was against incorporating my special interests/obsessions into the lesson plans because "it wasn't going to be like that when I went to college" (though actually she didn't think I would be able to go to college), and she eventually gave up homeschooling me. Telling me that if I wanted an education, I would have to get it myself....but I was never told where or how to. I also wasn't allowed to learn to drive and we lived in a VERY rural area with no public transit systems. I was also told it was my fault my mother stopped working with me. She would push me to the point I would have a meltdown...then punish me for the meltdown. I think that very often autistic children are really misunderstood in these ways.

And yes, I did go on to persue my special interests. People have often told me it would be impossible for me to be a veterinarian (and for example to focus on being a veterinary technician instead), but I didn't listen to them. Animals were always my special interest, and my chosen path turned out to be veterinary medicine of exotics and wildlife. I learned a long time ago not to take advice when I didn't ask for it.

Jessica, USA (ASD)