The world lit up in blue on April 2 for World Autism Awareness Day.
As we reported recently, cities across the world lit up blue for World Autism Awareness Day. And it’s an important day to have, because misconceptions about autism persist even today.
The “Light It Up Blue” campaign included 11,000 landmarks around the world, which were cast in a blue glow to bring awareness to autism, according to an Autism Speaks statement. The blue lights are a symbol of the autism community.
Myths persist about those who have autism, a neurodevelopmental disorder that often results in impaired social interaction, as well as difficulties in verbal and non-verbal communication.
One myth is that people with autism don’t want friends. In reality, people with autism simply struggle with social skills, making it tough to interact with peers. They seem shy or even unfriendly, but they do want to communicate.
Some believe that people with autism are unable to express or even feel emotions. In reality, they have emotions like everyone else, but their difficulty in communicating those feelings are what make it seem like they don’t. In addition, people with autism can understand the emotions of others, especially when those emotions are communicated directly.
Another myth is that people with autism aren’t intelligent. In fact, many people who have autism have high IQs.
Just because someone is autistic now doesn’t mean they’ll be that way forever. Children with autism can make enough improvement in their early years that they can eventually be determined to no longer be autistic, which is why it is important to deal with the issue when signs first manifest themselves.