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Dawn Wall and Free Solo films (Read 16356 times)

SA Chris

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#50 Re: Dawn Wall and Free Solo films
November 20, 2018, 02:06:58 pm
Cos that's what the medical professionals here in the UK refer to it as. Nowadays Aspergers is described as a part of ASD, which is a more collective term.

I'm not suggesting it's bad to say "on the spectrum" but people do tend to use that phrase in a derogatory way (I know I certainly have in the past).

(I have a child with ASD so I am reasonably informed).

I have one too, and can confirm this. However, in the US Asperger's is still considered a separate condition, whereas in the UK it's regarded as part of the spectrum these days.

Ged

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#51 Re: Dawn Wall and Free Solo films
November 20, 2018, 03:00:59 pm
Any ideas about free solo?

Ged

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#52 Re: Dawn Wall and Free Solo films
November 20, 2018, 03:05:35 pm
I've not seen the film yet, but working in education I do find the overuse of the terms a bit annoying. It seems like anybody who is a bit quirky and good at remembering facts is labelled, by non experts I hasten to add, as "on the spectrum". It seems to be a bit of a trend thing, along with anyone who likes to be tidy being described as, or describing themselves as, OCD.

I think it's probably fairly insulting to both the person being misdiagnosed, and to people who are "neuro-atypical". (this label seems to be becoming more widely used as it removes the disorder part).

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#53 Re: Dawn Wall and Free Solo films
November 20, 2018, 03:25:58 pm
Agree Ged.

Also, there is the misconception of correlation between something "neuro-atypical" and the use of the word disorder.

I've had many discussions about "Asperger types" in climbing, and
in my own struggles, it was suggested many years ago that I have an assessment for Asperger's - which came back negative.

I'd suggest that Honnold's experiences in relation to "the wall" are far easier for us to relate to than we'd like to recognise. He just finds that environment far more comfortable than the "off the wall" environment of normal (?) life, than (some of  ;)) the rest of us.

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#54 Re: Dawn Wall and Free Solo films
November 20, 2018, 06:52:37 pm
I'd suggest "intelligent" rather than "on the spectrum".

I thought it was typically the case that those with aspergers are often very intelligent

Dunno. I am not expert. Honnold seems to me remarkably similar to lots of successful people I have met in academia and especially in my previous career, mostly male but not exclusively, who combine a hyper-rational approach to life with perceived insensitivity. My suspicion is that the eagerness to label them as "on the spectrum", "unempathic" or abnormal in some way is born from factors like jealousy or intellectual incomprehension rather than any kind of understanding of clinical psychology. Honnold's foundation is a good example of how people like that can be misunderstood. He appears "cold" to some but actually donates a third of his income and makes a considered objective effort to make the maximum long-term impact from his foundation rather then being blown around by whatever fashionable emotive concern has most recently hit Facebook. Not unlike Bill Gates actually.

From the little I know from endless research since earlier this year after some things happened, what you're missing with that description of 'intelligence' is that someone with ASD may be very good at thinking logically and understanding systems. But they will have very limited 'emotional intelligence' - they'd find it hard to see the world from another's viewpoint, at understanding emotional reciprocity, to imagine what someone else is feeling, to understand how they are perceived by others. In short all the elements of empathy. It isn't not caring, it's being poor at appropriately displaying that they care in ways that people without ASD understand. In addition various sensory issues and being prone to shutting down when overloaded by sensory stimulus.

'Intelligence' and understanding and reacting appropriately to other people's emotions aren't mutually exclusive. There are plenty of very intelligent people who are also very good at understanding others' emotions. Many of the most successful people have both.

Regards the concept of donating money to causes; donating in a rational thought-through way is an example of logical thinking. It doesn't mean someone understands how to relate day-to-day with empathy with the people closest to them. You could argue the point about what's of most benefit to 'cause xyz' - intelligently focused financial contributions or some personal TLC. Depends on the cause no doubt. That's not directed at Honnold, I have no idea.

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#55 Re: Dawn Wall and Free Solo films
November 20, 2018, 07:24:22 pm
Regards the concept of donating money to causes; donating in a rational thought-through way is an example of logical thinking. It doesn't mean someone understands how to relate day-to-day with empathy with the people closest to them.
No, but I don't think I wrote that. We were discussing whether Honnold is "on the spectrum". I am happy to defer to your knowledge, but it seems to me that functional smart people with Honnold-like characters are so common that assigning them some kind of pejorative label like "on the spectrum" is both lazy and somewhat offensive, and, perhaps more importantly, unhelpful to kids and adults who are actually in need of professional help for ASD etc.

Quote
You could argue the point about what's of most benefit to 'cause xyz' - intelligently focused financial contributions or some personal TLC.
A large portion of this excellent book is devoted to that topic. Emotional/ "empathy"-driven giving is clearly helpful for specific causes that have the appropriate emotive triggers to pull people's attention. But it is easy to argue that it is better for the world as whole if large-scale altruism is rational, cost-effective, data-driven, etc.


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#56 Re: Dawn Wall and Free Solo films
November 20, 2018, 07:34:51 pm
You might be better reading Do all cats have Aspergers by Kate Hoopmann.
A patient who had the diagnosis reckoned it would help most people understand the condition and how it effects you.

petejh

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#57 Re: Dawn Wall and Free Solo films
November 20, 2018, 08:38:43 pm
No, but I don't think I wrote that. We were discussing whether Honnold is "on the spectrum". I am happy to defer to your knowledge, but it seems to me that functional smart people with Honnold-like characters are so common that assigning them some kind of pejorative label like "on the spectrum" is both lazy and somewhat offensive, and, perhaps more importantly, unhelpful to kids and adults who are actually in need of professional help for ASD etc.

It might be offensive if they didn't have aspergers. But if they did and bearing in mind it's a spectrum condition that ranges from very mild to very severe- it isn't black and white, then saying they were on the spectrum or that they had many traits in common with ASD shouldn't be offensive or pejorative at all -  it's simply acknowledging a developmental fact. However functional you might think someone appears to be, ASD does affect how they interact with people. If they or their partners/family don't think it negatively impacts them then great.


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#58 Re: Dawn Wall and Free Solo films
November 20, 2018, 10:24:26 pm
Another perspective is that people often use the term to describe unusual or ‘unsettling’ behaviour or traits in others. Creating an explicit spurious link between this ‘unsettling’ behaviour and those who may be affected by the diagnosis of ASD. Some quotes from a blog on the subject below.

“Such use and misuse of descriptive labels related to identity have historically been linked with prejudice and discrimination, as they come to represent something more sinister over time,"

‘By using the slang term "on the spectrum" or "autistic" to describe people who have trouble socializing, communicating, or empathizing, we insult people who fit the actual diagnosis — and spread some insidious myths about autism in general.’

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#59 Re: Dawn Wall and Free Solo films
November 21, 2018, 03:37:21 am
First of all - this thread reminds me why I love most of the people on this forum - intelligent, thoughtful, and reasonable which all seem so hard to find these days...

I have a daughter who is special needs.  She has an incredibly rare genetic disorder (around 200 known cases). Seeing and being part of the special needs community, there is a huge range of disorders.  For over a decade there was discussion and/or questions from teachers, teachers aides, parents of other special needs children, and other random friends and parents about whether she was autistic.  The answer from our end was always no.  It didn't fit her. 

As the years went on we saw so many kids diagnosed autistic.  In my opinion (untrained) many of the diagnosis were because parents wanted a diagnosis, autism has a huge amount of funding, and it's an easy answer to give people.  I say that because if we had wanted we could have easily had our daughter labeled that way from medical professionals in order to make sure she got the help she needed.  In the 90's, every kid who had issues at school was ADD or ADHD.  Now autism "spectrum" is becoming a catchall of a different kind.  I think it's bullS^&*, and as Habrich mentioned it has alot to do with money. 

I'll also throw this one out there having lived and breathed special needs for nearly 20 years - unless you are trained and have examined the person - EVERYONE should STFU about discussing "on the spectrum" or "maybe autistic"  or any other diagnosis.  It is rude as f%^& whether it is true or not. 

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#60 Re: Dawn Wall and Free Solo films
November 21, 2018, 01:43:31 pm
Good post, albeit rather blue on the spectrum.

BrutusTheBear

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#61 Re: Dawn Wall and Free Solo films
November 21, 2018, 02:14:02 pm
So.... over the last 5 years I have become a Specialist Teacher running a unit to include pupils with communication and interaction difficulties in mainstream education. 
Perhaps.,?!I am qualified to comment on some of the a

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#62 Re: Dawn Wall and Free Solo films
November 21, 2018, 02:17:37 pm
Apparently the insect overlords decided that you aren't? Censorship is everywhere  :ninja:

SA Chris

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#63 Re: Dawn Wall and Free Solo films
November 21, 2018, 02:25:34 pm
don't leave us hanging...

BrutusTheBear

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#64 Re: Dawn Wall and Free Solo films
November 21, 2018, 02:38:50 pm
Sorry to keep you hanging folks... will edit and re-post ASAP!

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#65 Re: Dawn Wall and Free Solo films
November 21, 2018, 03:54:41 pm
ADHD?

habrich

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#66 Re: Dawn Wall and Free Solo films
November 21, 2018, 04:20:03 pm
If I may be allowed a minor meander back toward the original topic ...

I downloaded and watched Dawn Wall yesterday. As a movie it didn't seem in the same calibre as Free Solo at all, visually or as a piece of storytelling. I suppose there is some small screen vs big screen bias in my opinion (I have seen FS twice in cinemas), also that I have read The Push and seen much of the Dawn Wall footage before. But, still, it just didn't engage in the same way as Free Solo. I love the short section at the end of FS where the music swells as Alex returns to his hangboard. Maybe a cliche but I found it really inspiring.

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#67 Re: Dawn Wall and Free Solo films
November 21, 2018, 05:01:17 pm
So.... over the last 5 years I have become a Specialist Teacher running a unit to include pupils with communication and interaction difficulties in mainstream education. 
Perhaps.,?!I am qualified to comment on some of the a
  or perhaps I'm too 'in it' but maybe feel like I can at least address some of the above from an informed perspective.

So I am actually at school right now and did get dragged away to support a pupil!  Then I retyped the post and then lost it all, wasn't sure I could be arsed at that point...

ASC - Autism Spectrum Condition - At present this is the diagnosis in the UK.
ASD- Autism Spectrum Disorder - No longer in use, disorder implies something is wrong.
Asperger's - No longer a diagnosis in the UK.  Was used to describe those that are 'higher functioning'.  Some people self-identify as Asperger's or Aspi.  Asperger was a Nazi Doctor/Scientist.

According to the Autism Education Trust there are 4 key areas of difference:

Interacting - the way they interact, play and develop relationships.
Processing Information - their attention, interests and how they learn.
Sensory Processing - the way they communicate, understand and use language.
Communication - taking in and perceiving sensory information. This may include hyper (high) or hypo (low) sensitivity to the 5 senses, as well as balance and body awareness.

To suggest that someone is 'ASD' or 'on the spectrum' because they have particular interests or a personality type or are socially awkward etc. is simply not on.

Every individual I have worked with is so completely different to others that the only way to truly meet their needs is to understand and know them as an individual.  They could be brilliant at verbally communicating or may be completely non-verbal.  They could extremely sensitive to noise or seek out very noisy environments.  They could be great at playing and interacting with others or may be completely uninterested in interacting with other people.  They could have a really strong specialized interest or have a broad/ varied range of interests.  The one thing that binds all of the young people I work with is that the world they have to function within can cause huge anxiety, stress and mental health issues.

Phrases like 'we're all on the spectrum somewhere' can really frustrate people within the autistic community because they might say something like 'so you're on the spectrum are you...when was the last time you were so crippled by anxiety that you couldn't leave your house?'

I don't diagnose people but I do have knowledge of the process and of the thresholds for a diagnosis in the UK.  In my opinion Honnold would not get a diagnosis.

SA Chris

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#68 Re: Dawn Wall and Free Solo films
November 21, 2018, 05:41:22 pm
Interesting, cheers. The report we got for my son after an assessment by local team definitely used ASD. Maybe Scotland is behind the times?

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#69 Re: Dawn Wall and Free Solo films
November 21, 2018, 07:34:33 pm
Yes. It’s a first but I think Devon may actually be ahead of the times for once!

Of course a diagnosis is only useful to help to explain the difficulties someone is having, give access to specialist support services etc. and help to start to understand how to function better.  Whether Honnold or anyone is or not is kinda irrelevant assuming they function happily in the world. 

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#70 Re: Dawn Wall and Free Solo films
November 22, 2018, 11:25:34 am
Phrases like 'we're all on the spectrum somewhere' can really frustrate people within the autistic community because they might say something like 'so you're on the spectrum are you...when was the last time you were so crippled by anxiety that you couldn't leave your house?'

Thanks for this post Brutus, really useful and a fantastic, important perspective. This particular comment is something I've wondered about semantically. Given that a spectrum extends from zero to one, then the above must be true, so is the term spectrum something that needs changing? In no way defending that abhorrent statement, just wondering about language of classification!

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#71 Re: Dawn Wall and Free Solo films
November 22, 2018, 12:57:14 pm
(Wading in) I think spectrum is a good term in that it makes people realise its not a ‘you’ve got X or you’ve got Y’ type situation - it makes people realise (hopefully) that there are shades of grey in the ‘defninitions’. Though there are probably many shades of grey or multiple spectra.

Of course its bad when the word or term is used pejoratively.... As an academic - most people where I work (myself included) are somewhere on some grade of scale :)

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#72 Re: Dawn Wall and Free Solo films
November 22, 2018, 06:03:11 pm
If there is something I have learnt from the work I do it is that it is near impossible to place people on a sliding scale and that the over arching term ‘autism’ goes nowhere near describing the myriad of neurological differences that exist.  If we just take sensory processing as an example the variance of sensitivities and needs from one individual to another,in the small cohort I work with, is massive.  Not only is variance between individuals massive but each individuals’ sensory needs and sensitivity can change wildly in different situations/ environments.  In diagnosis people are given a series of tests/ questions/ problems/ puzzles that then produce a score.  Each person is very different, if you think Dustin Hoffman in Rainman is the only way a person with autism presents you’d be very wrong.  Sure there are certain stock things we can all do that are ‘autism friendly’ eg. Use simple literal language, allow time for people to process information, keep things calm and quiet, make sure folk understand what is going to happen next etc. Etc.  But I increasingly understand that a person centred and individualised approach is necessary for people who don’t fit into categorised boxes hence the use of ‘spectrum’ I guess.  The spectrum is not on one frequency but across a range of frequencies with variance in ‘severity’, a 4 dimensional spectrum if you will.. :-\

Apologies this has very little to do with Honnold :off: 

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#73 Re: Dawn Wall and Free Solo films
November 22, 2018, 08:43:48 pm
...a 4 dimensional spectrum if you will.. :-\


See the spectrum wheel thingy just down from the top in this link:

https://happylearners.info/asd.html

My 12 year old daughter has had an autism diagnosis since junior school and appears very 'high functioning', she requires almost zero additional support at school yet there are certain areas where she would be considered much further along the spectrum. I think trying to give (or doubt) an autism diagnosis from simply meeting (or watching) someone is impossible in many cases.

We had many people (who knew us and our daughter well) express similar views to Sasquatch
...In my opinion (untrained) many of the diagnosis were because parents wanted a diagnosis, autism has a huge amount of funding, and it's an easy answer to give people.  I say that because if we had wanted we could have easily had our daughter labeled that way from medical professionals in order to make sure she got the help she needed.  In the 90's, every kid who had issues at school was ADD or ADHD.  Now autism "spectrum" is becoming a catchall of a different kind.  I think it's bullS^&*, and as Habrich mentioned it has alot to do with money.

although maybe more along the lines that she was simply a bit of a tricky child. During the period pre and immediately post diagnosis she was struggling with some really serious issues (I won't go into details on a public forum) a few of which only became apparent to us once she had her diagnosis and we discussed things with her a lot.

One of the things that is tricky is that 'high functioning' autistic kids are the ones that are the most hard to diagnose, the ones who most often avoid getting 'spotted' by teachers or parents and the ones who can get labled as having fussy parents i.e. not being autistic. Yet this same group, especially when undiagnosed, suffer from really high rates of self harm, eating disorders and suicide.

Although I have used functioning labels in this post they are really frowned upon by the autistic community as they can minimise the difficulties of autistic people with good language skills and severely underestimate the abilities of, for example, non-verbal autistics.

I think a lot of autistic people hate the comment that 'everybody is a bit on the spectrum'. Although many people deomonstrate some behaviours that could be classified on the spectrum, autism is a specific neurology, and 'a little bit autisitic' is equivalent to saying 'a little bit pregnant'. There is a vocal community of autistic adults and self advocates - I think it is important to listen carefully to what they have to say. For example, my daughter doesn't like it when she is described as having autism, she would say she is autistic - and I think this is pretty common in the autistic community. You wouldn't say a person suffered from gayness or lefthandedness...





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#74 Re: Dawn Wall and Free Solo films
November 22, 2018, 08:44:30 pm
ps really looking forward to going to see the freesolo film, can't wait.