Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Not Going Silent on November 1

Many bloggers are writing about the whole going silent on facebook and twitter thing on November 1. As I make the rounds of blogs on the Special Needs Blog Hop, I've noted that I won't be. So many of my facebook and twitter friends are autistic. If we went silent on that day, would that not isolate them more? Bah.

Instead I say, go to the blogs by individuals on the spectrum and say hi. Read some entries. Learn what their lives are like. Our children will one day be autistic adults. We want to make sure our children have a good support system, well, let's be a good support system to the autistic adults who are in our midst now.

Updated to include our list of bloggers on the spectrum.

Bloggers on the spectrum:

Blogs By Folks on the Spectrum


jillsmo said...

That is a VERY good idea. How about starting a list? Maybe a blog hop?

Kim Wombles said...

Put the list in the post, jillsmo!

Cheryl D. said...

I'm not going silent on November 1st. I think it's a silly idea!

What an impressive list of blogs! Wow!

Anonymous said...

I am not going silent either. I do like your idea about making it a real teaching day.

dluvscoke said...

I guess I'm "out of it" because I hadn't heard a thing. Thanks for the information. Good thinking!

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the great list of my fellow spectrumites! Some I recognize; many are new to me! I will enjoy visiting new people to celebrate Autistic Speak-Out Day!

Anonymous said...

Hello there,
Thank you so much for putting me on your list. I didn't know anything about this silent day. I really look forward to getting comments on my blog from my bloggy friends, it would have really upset me to not have anyone visit and not understand why.
We spend so much time in silence, I think this is a really silly idea and I'm glad you are standing against it. I look forward to reading more of your blog. Thank you.
Love and hugs. xx :)

Kim Wombles said...

Hi alienhippy,

I found you through Laura's blog and added you then! I enjoy reading your blog. :)

No, silence when your friends are on the spectrum seems a cruelty, not a show of solidarity.

Love and hugs back to you!

Marianne said...

Hi there

My name is Marianne and I'm part of the Communication Shutdown team.

I hope you don't mind, but I thought I could jump in and clarify a few points. We understand social networking sites are important tools for people with autism so we are in no way suggesting that people with autism shutdown and be silent. We simply believe that if neurotypicals (especially those who have no prior engagement with the autism community) go without the social networks they increasingly depend on, they will feel a sense of social disconnection which will encourage a greater understanding and empathy (not sympathy).

We are lucky to have the support of Dr Temple Grandin and she put it well when she said, “I can remember the frustration of not being able to talk. People will have some idea of what this feels like when they take part in Communication Shutdown.”

We also see the online badge as a sign of solidarity and hope that when neurotypicals go quiet, autistic voices can be louder on Nov 1.

So we hope that both the shutdown and the shoutout can complement each other as we do seem to share the same goal. And we would love to share your experiences with our supporters to further educate them. So thank you for compiling this list, we'll be sure to stop by too.

Kim Wombles said...


Since there are still many people who do not use twitter or facebook, and since these people who sign off for the day can still talk and go on about their real world social lives, they won't get anywhere close to awareness of what it's like to be autistic.

Not going on facebook isn't going to give anybody an idea of my son's life or my daughters's lives. And if folks aren't on facebook, twitter, the internet, it doesn't follow that autistic's voices will be all the louder. Who will be listening to them? Really?

No, no, and again no. So, the NTs give some money, get a badge, get to say they're next to Temple Grandin, and feel good about themselves while the autistic individuals who use the social media for their primary communications find themselves further isolated because their NT friends have gone suddenly silent.

I'll pass. And when I choose to give to charities, I'll directly give to those charities where I know how my dollars are spent, and I won't be doing it so I can show a nifty badge and toot my own horn about how aware I am. I'll continue to advocate for awareness, accommodations, and acceptance by running this directory with Kathleen and by communicating directly with autistic individuals.

Oh, and I'll be teaching my three children, who just happen to be on the spectrum, to be wary of gimmicks and promotions that don't actually help the people they purport to.

kathleen said...

I am sorry that I wasn't around today-and only saw this now. I absolutely back what Kim has written 100%.
I respect the work of Temple Grandin she is a well known voice in the autism community..However, her fame does not mean that she speaks or represents every autistic person. Nor does her stamp of approval make the decision to "go silent" right. I find it horrifying that this organization believes it does so. Perhaps if they spoke to other autistic people and asked them what they wanted-they might learn a thing or two.

Marianne said...

We have a very simple way for people in the wider community to listen to autistic voices.

We are fully supporting Autistics Speaking Day and would love to share your experiences with our supporters. We would really like to give your voice more reach, while at the same time giving our supporters a deeper understanding of autism.

We will keep an eye on your blog and with your permission, we hope to share any of your positive experiences or challenges with our supporters when they get back on November 2. As well, please feel free to email me at

Many thanks and hope you have a great Autistics Speaking Day.

P.S. Kathleen, we quote Temple Grandin but we also quote other people on the spectrum who support the campaign too. There is however a spectrum of opinions out there and we are simply trying to unite under a common goal, even when we agree to disagree.

kathleen said...

Marianne-in your first comment you said "we are lucky to have the support of Temple Grandin" ...had you said "We have the support of many people on the spectrum.." I might think differently. But you didn't. I stand by my first comment.

JESSICA said...

My daughter suffered from autism for more than 2 years which we started experiencing in her when she turned 1 year and 5 months we all thought it will end but got even worse as days went by. We tried all several treatments and therapy prescribed by various doctors we met but to no avail, she lost total concentration and always complain of sensitivity to sound . She usually tells me she haves poor eyes contact. This were steady disorder that disrupted her entire life, even at night she slept less because of this.It was during a casual conversation with a friend that i learned about Dr Williams herbal medicine I was able to contact him on his email address. and give him all the necessary information that he needed,few day later he sent me the herbal portion and his medicine was able to restore her back to normal and she is very okay now without any side effects whatsoever. If you have autism, do not hesitate to contact him on for advice and for his product. I hope this also helps someone out there



Autism Blogs Directory

Related Sites

General Science-Related Blogs