More Than A Number blog

{April 17, 2009}   Not all Autistics are Rainman!

The 1988 movie “Rain Man” is fascinating and good movie fare. There are a very select few with Rain Man’s skills. He has a condition called savant syndrome that results in an extreme talent at one specific area yet generally an otherwise low IQ. These skills can include card counting (like Rain Man), calender memory, an obsessive knowledge about one specific thing (such as baseball statistics or U.S. presidents) Half of savants are considered to be autistic.

However, it does get really annoying when people automatically assume autistic=rain man. I especially have no desire to let anybody know I’m autistic where I am right now; the Borgata at Atlantic City. Although I wouldn’t be allowed on the casino floor anyways since I’m not 21 until July. In any case I can assure you I have average skill at card games, I certainly cannot card count. I am lucky to remember today’s date, let alone one 50 years ago. Every autistic person is different, so please do not insult us by assuming we have the same skills as a movie character or somebody on the news. Just like non-autistics, we are each unique.


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