STATISTICS

  • Nearly half (46 percent) of the ABA-exposed respondents met the diagnostic threshold for PTSD, and extreme levels of severity were recorded in 47 percent of the affected subgroup. Respondents of all ages who were exposed to ABA were 86 percent more likely to meet the PTSD criteria than respondents who were not exposed to ABA. Adults and children both had increased chances (41 and 130 percent, respectively) of meeting the PTSD criteria if they were exposed to ABA. Both adults and children without ABA exposure had a 72 percent chance of reporting no PTSS (see Figure 1). - Evidence of increased PTSD symptoms in autistics exposed to applied behavior analysis | Emerald Insight.
  • Adults with ASD described a wide range of life events as being experienced as traumatic. Findings indicate that adults with ASD may be at increased risk of PTSD development following both traumas meeting DSM‐5 PTSD Criterion A and non‐DSM‐5 traumatic events that do not meet Criterion A. - More Details
  • "We know that about 70 percent of kids with autism will have a comorbid psychiatric disorder," says Connor Kerns, assistant professor of psychology at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, Canada. Depression, anxiety and obsessive-compulsive disorder are all known to be more common among autistic people than in the general population.
  • "We know from the literature that individuals with autism are much more exposed to bullying, ostracizing, teasing, etc.," Golan says. "And when you look in the clinic, you can see that they’re very sensitive to these kinds of events." Among autistic students, Golan and Horesh have found, social incidents, such as ostracizing, predict PTSD more strongly than violent ones, such as war, terror or abuse, which are not uncommon in Israel. Among typical students, though, the researchers see the opposite tendency. More Details
  • Epilepsy affects a remarkable 25% to 40% of patients with ASD, compared to 2% to 3% of the general population, GI disorders affect as many as 85% of patients with ASD, Chronic sleep problems affect anywhere from 50% to 80% of children with autism - and therefore, their parents, As many as 85% of children with autism also have some form of comorbid psychiatric diagnosis, and 35% are taking at least 1 psychotropic medication as treatment. ADHD, anxiety, and depression. More Details
  • The Swedish study found that adults with autism and a learning disability are 40 times more likely to die early due to a neurological condition than those in the general population. More Details
  • Anxiety affects 11-40% of children and teens on the spectrum, Depression affects between 7-26% of autistic adults. More Details
  • The researchers found that people with autism died 16 years earlier at an average age of 54. Adults with the condition and learning disabilities died more than 30 years earlier than people without autism at an average age of 39.5 years. Adults with autism and without a learning disability died on average 12 years earlier, at 58. More Details
  • Nearly 42% of young adults on the autism spectrum never worked for pay during their early 20s. Young adults on the autism spectrum who worked after high school held an average of about three jobs total during their early 20s. Nearly 80% worked part-time and earned an average of $9.11 per hour. Full-time workers earned an average of $8.08 per hour. More Details
  • Yet a whopping 85% of college grads affected by autism are unemployed, compared to the national unemployment rate of 4.5%. More Details
  • 32.1 percent of people with autism had had a partner and only 9 percent were married. This contrasts with the statistics of the general population where about 50 percent of adults are married. More Details
  • Autistic adults experienced a wide range of life events as traumatic, with over 40% showing probable PTSD within the last month and over 60% reporting probable PTSD at some point in their lifetime. Many of the life events experienced as traumas would not be recognized in some current diagnostic systems, raising concerns that autistic people may not receive the help they need for likely PTSD. More Details
  • Participants had the most success in relationships in which their atypical behavior was normalized. Specifically, this occurred among friends who accepted and appreciated their social differences and through common interests where these differences were not a concern. In other relationships, participants felt that they were expected to adhere to social norms, but found it uncomfortable and/or were not sure how to act in some contexts. Therefore, finding friends who did not expect this was a welcome relief. Participants who were socially isolated wanted more opportunities to meet other people, such as organized social groups, but were not sure how to access these. More Details

ND Friendships Survey (NDF Original) - N=75

  • 100% agreed their friendships with Neurodiverse friends are different than friendships with Neurotypical Friends.
  • 99% agreed they would utilize a Neurodiverse Friendship platform to find an authentic friend.
  • 84% prefer their friends understand that their energy levels for social activities vary.
  • 80% prefer a friend who is willing to talk about hard things and be vulnerable.
  • 77% prefer a friend with shared values.
  • 77% prefer a friend who wants to grow and learn.

How would you compare your friendship with your Neurodiverse friend to friendships with Neurotypical friends?

  • "Neurodiverse friends are more accepting when I need a break or don't have the energy to hang out.  They remind me that I have limits and that boundaries are good.  They don't make fun of me when I do something socially "weird".  We can provide each other with support when struggling through a depressive episode or something similar."
  • "They understand me, they're honest, and they accommodate my needs without question. They take me at my word, forgive me, and assume the best of me."
  • "My neurodiverse friends understand me and my neurotypical friends make fun of me."
  • "I feel better understood. Also i'm less lonely bc i'm not the only "outsider" i feel perfectly accepted and appreciate and it's way easier to not mask around them."

What is special about your friendships with your Neurodiverse friend?

  • "It just feels like there's more openness, acceptance, and understanding with ND friends.  NT friends expect me to do things the "normal" or most acceptable way, and I think they expect me to be meaner than i am.  ND friends know that I'm not like that."
  • "All my life, my deepest desire has always been to find friends that give me the effort and love I give them. Something special about ND friends would be basic understanding and acceptance. It's both amazing and sad how much those things mean to ND."
  •  "Too many things to count but mostly it is just a comfortable feeling cause there isn't a "required" method of communication and discussion. It's way more freeform and loose without a "normal" filter on it."
  • "The depth of the relationship. There often isn't any social code and they just say what they mean and respect my boundaries and differences."

TRAUMA QUOTES/STATS (Adverse Childhood Experiences: Lifelong consequences and how to overcome them - Dr. Angelo Pezzote)

  • Conversion of trauma: adverse childhood experience, disrupted neurodevelopment, social, emotional and cognitive impairment, adoption of health-risk behavior leads to disease, disability, and social problems.
  • The best protection against relationship is secure relationships - Alex G shared a quote with me "you only need 30% of your needs met by a caregiver to have a secure attachment"
  • ⅓ of individuals with eating disorders endured child abuse
    • People with anorexia often have difficulties making friends and sustaining social relationships even before the onset of their condition. Because high levels of social discomfort and withdrawal persist even after they begin eating regularly and return to a normal weight, these social difficulties are not likely to have been caused by anorexia or malnutrition. The review pointed to numerous studies of people with anorexia that documented rigid patterns of thinking and behavior, an insistence on sameness and difficulty with change - all of which are commonly seen in people with autism. Lastly, neurocognitive studies showed that people with anorexia have trouble with what Treasure calls "seeing the forest for the trees," and also with mentally switching between different tasks. These traits, the researchers pointed out, are also seen in people with autism. More Details
    • I know there is strong overlap between autistic women and eating disorders - will find more
  • 66% of Americans have at least 1 ACE, if one, there's a 50% chance out of that sample they will have 3 others.
  • 1/5 americans have been molested before 18 (Autistic women at increased risk to be in abusive relationships - have endured more sexual trauma - will dig into this more).
  • ¼ americans have been physically abused
  • 4+ ACES - 350% more likely to commit suicide
  • 6+ ACEs 3,000-5,000% more likely to attempt suicide
  • 40% of trans people attempt suicide (look into - overlap between trans and autism).
  • If you are gay, you are 6x more likely to attempt suicide, 8x more likely if rejected by parents (look into - overlap between autism/gender fluidity and gay comm).
  • BIG INFLUENCER ON TRAUMA: belongingness - essential human need. Being excluded/ostracised is excrutiating. Physical AND SOCIAL pain are registered in the same way (activate the same region in the same way - social rejection FEELS like physical pain).
  • Both physical and emotional injury cause disability (i.e., meaning anxiety/depression/PTSD).
  • Executive function is compromised during chronic stress. (environmental - autistics are completely overwhlemed by overstimulating/stressful environments. We perceive different situations as stressful and our EF is limited in those environments).
  • The first 3 years of live are correlated exponentially with developmental delays (ex if you have 5 aces before age 3, you have an 80% chance of developing a developmental delay)