The Autism Documentary – Synopsis & Background
Aspergers Society is an autism documentary created by the autistic community, for the autistic community. Thomas created his film as part of his final year project and took the decision to incorporate voices from autistic students alongside his key speakers. With no prior experience in film and a very small budget, the autism documentary was filmed, edited and promoted with the limited resources available to him.
Here’s the kicker; the statistics around the mental health and quality of life experienced by individuals with autism are severely under-appreciated. There is a wealth of information and statistical analysis out there that show how tragic a diagnosis of autism can actually be… but don’t be fooled. The high rates of bullying, isolation and unemployment suggest these high rates of mental health may not be explained by wholly by the inherent differences in biology and neurocircuitry.
The word ‘autism’ comes with many prejudgements and expectations that are almost automatically retrieved from our brains when we hear it. Disabled, strange, vulnerable, the weird kid; these are all common things that many people would associate with the condition. Many people on the autistic spectrum do not believe they are disabled, and would never choose to be any other way. Autism is generally seen to be a list of sensory, behavioural and social difficulties, but it is also associated with a whole host of intellectual gifts, positive personality traits, and valuable talents.
Bullying, alienation, severe mental health disorders, unemployment, lack of support, anxiety, depression, suicidal thoughts and acts. These may just be simple words on a page, but you only has to do a quick internet search to find evidence for just a few of these unpleasant realities. The terrible truth is… assuming autism is ‘BAD’ thing may be hiding the very real issues that lie below the surface. These issues lay silently in the dark, afflicting thousands of individuals both young and old without any discrimination, but the label.
Watch the full-length autism documentary on Thomas’ YouTube page ‘Aspergers Growth’ and let him know what you think!