People with ASD like everyone else

What is Autism?

Inspiration Hub , Knowing Psychology

Those who have watched the popular Korean drama It’s Okay to not be Okay, know that Gang-tae’s brother Sang-tae has autism and he always needs Gang-tae’s support in life. You might wonder: Are people with autism self-isolated and they cannot communicate well with others? Is Sang-tae’s behaviour in the play only dramatic effect? How do people with autism behave in reality? How do I get along or communicate with them?

To find the answers, Siu Pin consulted colleagues from the Student Disability Support Services of OSA to clarify these questions.

Q:   What is Autism?

A:   Autism, or Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), is a neurodevelopmental disorder. The term “spectrum” refers to a wide range of symptoms, challenges, as well as abilities and strengths.

Q:   What are the symptoms of autism?

A:    People with ASD show two main categories of symptoms: Difficulties in social interaction and communication, and repetitive patterns of behaviors with narrower interests. For example, for social interactions, they might have difficulty in processing complex social cues and understanding implicit social rules. It might affect their interactions with others.

Q:   How to get along with people with ASD?

A:   We should treat them as everyone else. Like each of us, they have their personalities, preferences, strengths and weaknesses. The characteristics of autism, such as difficulty in understanding other people’s thoughts, narrower interests, or repetitive behaviours, are only part of them.

People with ASD like everyone else
ASD is a neurodevelopmental disorder.
They sometimes like to be alone and sometimes want to have companions or make friends. They may need more ideas and tips on how to build friendship and get along well with others. With patience and care, we can all do our parts to help them integrate into society. With more understanding and less discrimination, the world will be more beautiful.