What Do We Mean By “Neurodiversity”?
We define neurodiversity in the broad sense of standard neurological variations (i.e. neurotypes) which are just as normal in terms of human variation and just as important to one’s own identity as any other component which constitutes one’s sense of self – the idea being that without the part of us which makes us autistic or dyslexic, for example, then we would no longer be ourselves, as it is so integral to who we are as people and so intertwined with our own identities and ways of being and interacting with the world.
Moreover, we want to queer pathology here insofar as we seek to keep the parameters of what neurodiversity means fluid and open in nature, so our definition is inclusive of and will explore, but it is importantly not limited to, the following areas of neurodiversity:
- Developmental Coordination Disorder (DCD) / Dyspraxia
- Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)
- Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD)
- Tourette Syndrome
Where did Practical Neurodiversity come from?
Practical Neurodiversity was created by Ally, who is autistic and has ADHD and has just finished the last part of her master’s in psychology.
The idea initially came in December 2020 and, through collective burnouts and some stop and starts, gradually came to fruition before properly starting later in 2021. The concept came after Ally had designed a simple and easily adaptable communication tool which she wanted to share with other people who may benefit from what she calls an, “absurdity of an Excel hack”, but they did not know where there was a space for people like her to centrally share resources, tools, lifehacks, stories and just ways to navigate a neurotypical world. Ally had seen bits and pieces scattered all over the internet, but nothing in one central space where the neurodiverse community could come to share knowledge and stories; so, she, with the help of some friends, ultimately created this rather informal and ongoing project, which is the resource library and sharing space of Practical Neurodiversity.