It’s time we start acting like it

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A nonbinary person checking their phone while lying in bed, with a neutral expression on their face. Photo by Shane on Unsplash

There’s a new, hot transphobe out on the prowl for some delicious outrage clout. She’s written a book so transparently cruel and poorly researched that a major retailer swiftly banned it and many independent bookstores refuse to stock it. The book’s been panned by every interviewer who possesses even a shred of scientific knowledge or respect for trans people’s humanity. In many ways, the evil has already been defeated; the bad idea has lost in the court of public opinion, and the trash has been swiftly and unceremoniously taken out.

But on another level, this book has been a raging success. It’s generating exactly the kind of shallow, frantic attention its author always intended. Before the book came out, this author was a relative nobody with some decent bylines. Now that she can crow about being “cancelled” for being a bigot, she is a conservative darling. …


Good leadership makes life easier for employees and students, not harder

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Photo by J W on Unsplash

Earlier this week, I offered a workshop on compassionate pedagogy for the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. My compassionate pedagogy framework is based on my deep-seated belief that laziness does not exist, but unseen barriers do. When a student struggles, it’s almost invariably because they have too many demands on their plate, or they are dealing with hidden challenges their professor either can’t see, or refuses to appreciate as valid. When we approach our students with a spirit of openness, flexibility, and humility, we can lessen their pain, and if not level the playing field for them, at least stop contributing to their feelings of shame and stress. …


Neurodiversity exists on a spectrum — so where do we draw the line?

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Photo by Gavin Biesheuvel on Unsplash

Welcome to the third entry in Autistic Advice, a semi-regular column where I respond to questions about neurodiversity, Autism acceptance, and disability rights from Autistic people and their allies. You can anonymously send me questions via my Curious Cat askbox.

Before we dive in, a bit about me: I am a 32-year-old Autistic psychologist who didn’t realize they were on the spectrum until their mid-20’s. My whole family is full of people with Autism-spectrum traits, and I have been active in the Autism self-advocacy community for about six years. On Medium, I’ve written extensively about my experiences, and the experiences of other adult Autistics whom I’ve interviewed for various projects. …


The world we lost seems to be roaring back to life. So why do you still feel like garbage?

Rearview of a woman looking out a window forlornly.
Rearview of a woman looking out a window forlornly.
Photo: Photographer, Basak Gurbuz Derman/Getty Images

This past Saturday, I stood in the middle of Chicago’s Andersonville neighborhood and watched as dozens of people danced, banged pots and pans, honked their car horns, and cheered in celebration of Joe Biden’s electoral victory. The good news of that day was swiftly followed by more good news — the hilarity of Giuliani’s Four Season’s Landscaping press conference, the wins in Georgia and Nevada, and then on Monday, Pfizer’s announcement of a 90% successful Covid vaccine.

Those few days felt bright and filled with possibility, as if the world we lost in 2016 had suddenly come roaring back to life. It was still a world beset with problems, but it felt like one where hard political work could make a dent in things, and lives could truly be saved. …


Autism advice from a neurodiverse psychologist

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Photo by Marten Newhall on Unsplash

Welcome to Autistic Advice #2, a semi-regular column where I respond to questions about neurodiversity, Autism acceptance, and disability rights from Autistic people and their allies. You can anonymously send me questions via my Curious Cat askbox.

Before we dive in, a bit about me: I am a 32-year-old Autistic psychologist who didn’t realize they were on the spectrum until their mid-20’s. My whole family is full of people with Autism-spectrum traits, and I have been active in the Autism self-advocacy community for about six years. On Medium, I’ve written extensively about my experiences, and the experiences of other adult Autistics whom I’ve interviewed for various projects. …


Time to give your faith in humanity a booster shot

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Two people chatting outside, wearing masks and social distancing. Photo by Kate Trifo on Unsplash

When the news broke that France and Germany would soon be entering a second lockdown in an attempt to reduce spread of the Coronavirus, my friend Naomi quickly took to Facebook .

“The second surge will hit Florida in full force soon too,” she wrote of the state where she lives. “And all because people insisted on having house parties and high school football games.”

She was far from alone in feeling this way. Across all social media platforms, I saw friends, family, and acquaintances scolding their neighbors for lacking sufficient quarantine discipline. …


What looks like apathy is more commonly trauma, exhaustion, and burnout.

At the University where I work, students get sent a lot of digital surveys. They get surveys from the university library and the tech help desk. They get surveys about their classes, and surveys about the University’s approach to environmental sustainability. This summer, they received a survey about the presence of police on campus and one about whether or not the spring semester should be moved entirely online. There are diversity and inclusion surveys, budget surveys, tuition surveys, and surveys on where the student activity fee should go.

The response rates on these surveys are dismal. Twenty percent if you’re lucky; often far more like 10%. Every time a new survey gets added to the pile, it makes matters even worse. Sometimes I hear university administrators bemoan our students for being so unreliable and unresponsive. Don’t they want to be heard? …


Don’t name their experience for them. Give them agency. Let them forge their own path.

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A meadow of purple flowers. Photo by Click and Learn Photography on Unsplash

TW: this piece includes brief descriptions of abuse, manipulation, and sexual assault

October is National Domestic Violence Awareness Month, a fact I was reminded of today when I walked past a church absolutely smothered in shiny purple DV awareness ribbons. I’m usually not one for “awareness” days or months, their sentimentality always rings false to me, but seeing the church ablaze in purple gave me a sudden trauma flashback.

All at once I was transported back to 2010, when I was caught up in an abusive relationship but wasn’t ready to admit it yet. Back then, seeing a such a glaring reminder of my abuse would have sent me spiraling into self-doubt and denial for the rest of the day. …


When the systems have failed you, personal responsibility is hard.

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Photo by Kobby Mendez on Unsplash.

Winter is descending upon Chicago, and all my quarantine coping mechanisms are dying like the leaves. The skies are gray and a cool slick wetness covers everything. The coffee shop patio I sat at all summer is closed. Now when I try to sit outside, my joints get stiff and a chill rapidly seeps into my core. The lake is frigid. The parks are muddy and devoid of people.

To share a drink in the backyard with a couple of friends, I need a parka and layers of blankets. To find privacy I have to hide at the topmost floor of my apartment’s dusty stairwell. …


Autistic Advice #1: A New Column by a Neurodiverse Psychologist

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Photo by Robert Collins on Unsplash

Welcome to Autistic Advice, a new, semi-regular column where I respond to questions about neurodiversity, Autism acceptance, and disability rights from Autistic people and their allies. For the past month or so, I’ve had a Curious Cat question box open, and have accepted questions from educators, parents, and Autistic people themselves. You can anonymously send me questions there as well.

Before we dive in, a bit about me: I am a 32-year-old Autistic person who didn’t realize they were on the spectrum until their mid-20’s. My whole family is full of people with Autism-spectrum traits of one kind or another, and at this point in my life I socialize with fellow neurodiverse people almost exclusively. On Medium, I’ve written extensively about my experiences, and the experiences of other adult Autistics whom I’ve interviewed. …

About

Devon Price

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