Am I an AUTISM Expert? No.

I remember watching a CBC Documentary “The Trouble With Experts” back in 2015. http://www.cbc.ca/player/play/2651996758 

It essentially outlined how anybody can call themselves an expert. You didn’t need any kind of accreditation to utilize this title– You just COULD. Now, that got me thinking about self-proclaimed Autism Experts, yeah, you may know the ones. They are bright-eyed and bushy-tailed and able to create a profit off of this. I’m certainly not talking about Amythest Schaber who I have the UTMOST respect for. (so please, don’t think that for a moment!) I’m talking about the ones who actually attend talks and tell people how to profit off of their different abilities and have acquired a mass amount of social media followers. I want to make one thing inherently clear: I AM NOT AN AUTISM EXPERT. I will begin to preface my videos by giving a little schpiel about this. My views, my opinions, yada-yada-yada. I’ve been asked for advice and I try to make sure they know that I, in no way, have any kind of training or expertise. I just live by experience. I want to share my story in the hopes that people relate with me but don’t go thinking I’m some kind of shrink. I do this blog because I love writing, taking photos, making videos and trying out things in my very own way.

If it’s too good to be true, it probably is. ALWAYS ASK QUESTIONS. It’s more than OK to be a skeptic.

-Margaux

ask blackboard chalk board chalkboard

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

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2 NEW Videos!

CBC Docs POV Presents Love, Hope & Autism

Firstly, I want to say thanks to CBC for giving me the chance to view this incredible film before it even airs on Sunday, March 18, 2018 at 9 PM.

Love, Hope & Autism centres around fraternal twins Fraser and Hallee Fresco and their journey growing up. Their bond is beautiful. Fraser is Autistic and Hallee is not. The special connection Fraser has with his Cameraman Father is so unique and really amazing. I loved seeing all their adventures captured on screen. The fact that so much of it is footage captured by the Father during the twins childhood provides a fresh perspective like nothing i’ve seen before.

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I hope you have the chance to watch it and open the discussion of how diverse Autism really is and how it can bring some families together, much like it did for the Frescos. There is still a complete lack of funding and resources for adults on the spectrum and this film definitely brings it to light.

For more information, please check out:

@cbcdocs #CBCDocsPOV

 

” Autistic burnout is real guys and i’m feeling it real bad.”

I tweeted this out yesterday and I am still feeling the same way today.

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Explaining it to people is devastatingly hard. I commend the attempt at understanding but unless you’ve experienced it yourself, you never know. For me, the exhaustion kicks in, both mentally and physically. The light sensitivity happens and being able to see gets increasingly difficult. Trying to be social is virtually impossible and continues to drain energy that is barely left. I get goosebumps, I physically look ‘drained’. My attempt at tasks that require my fine motor skills becomes a course in ‘how many times can I fail?’

Autistic burnout isn’t a made up thing- I just wish it was easier to explain to people. It’s not an excuse and it’s not like I consciously (or unconsciously) decided to be perceived as lazy or unreliable. There’s such thing as ‘too much’ and I feel as though that’s where i’m at.

This happens to me, and i’ve documented it before:

 

New Videos!

Disclaimer: This is my own opinion and should not reflect the brands or companies I have graciously partnered with.

My plight as a Millennial

I never decided to be part of the Millennial or Me Generation.

I have heard that nearly half of Millennials rely on their parents for financial help! I think there’s a very common misconception that we all have that “luxury”, Simply put: We don’t.

Being nearly 30 years old, I have always known I do not want to have children. I am perfectly content with my beautiful, spoiled rotten Cats and constantly worry about the economical and environmental state of our fragile planet.

I have had plenty of time to potentially advance my career. I never knew what to pursue. The idea of student debt is a frightening preposition. In hindsight, I could have gone in to some kind of broadcasting or film job but it’s very oversaturated and there is never a guarantee that I could or would be able to make ends meet.

That brings me to my next subject, home ownership.

There is absolutely no way in today’s climate that I would ever be able to own a home. Firstly, I work at a job I enjoy but it’s only minimum wage. (surprise, surprise!) Secondly, with homes starting in the million dollar range, my only hope would be winning the lottery and, to be honest, I would probably skip town if that ever were to happen.

My social life is virtually non-existent. It’s so funny how we are in the age of technology and social media. Yet, we are so incredibly disconnected from each other.

I will say that I’m a content creator. There’s nothing truly unique about that other than my autistic perspective. That, sometimes, can sadly be seen as limited or not equal to the rest of the population. There are lots of us who want to change that often misunderstood perception and believe me: I’m working on it!

If  you happen to have baby boomer parents like me (or the generation that followed), some (not my own) don’t always understand what we go through.  For instance, I have heard of parents who own their home and can’t understand that their offspring will ever have the chance to be able to have the same lifestyle as them. That can really cause some deep family conflict. I often wonder if a common ground or sense of understanding  can happen here because the divide is so deep.

I would love to see affordable housing, an increased hourly wage and more support. I also believe that healthcare needs more funding. We really need to consider how all these things impact our mental health because I truly believe the state of the economy, the planet and our changing and dividing times impact us more then we even know and it’s not always positive.
Photo Credit:Nathan Dumlao

What’s my time worth?

I have been suffering from some of the worst anxiety lately. Sleepless nights accompanied by cold sweats, tossing and turning and waking up repeatedly. I’m irritated during the day and I want to be silent at night.

I’m wholeheartedly frustrated.

I feel like I’m someone who can relate to a fuzzy picture on an old television. Sometimes it’s in focus and sometimes it’s just completely static.

 

When I reach out to corporations and companies I hope my time is valued. I hope that the work I put in to it is either offered with some kind of trade like being provided a service in exchange for a review.

So here I am.

I approached one of the largest computer/tech companies.

They are trying to create a resurgence in the marketplace with products marketed to Millennials in hopes that they will be converted from silver products to colourful cubes. Oh, did I mention their net worth is 200+ BILLION DOLLARS? 

Naturally, I would have expected compensation for my time. Knowing a computer is an expensive and hefty piece of equipment to offer me, I would have been happy with  money that I could use to reinvest in items for my blog (a microphone?!) to better my content.

Apparently this corporation does not have the budget to pay me to essentially borrow their item and spend time analyzing it and reviewing it. I am just entirely blown away and what I’m trying to do is show neurodiverse (and neurotypical) individuals products that would enhance life. I like to interject my own humour and thoughts. I love to interact with all of you and hear your precious feedback.

Brands: Please value our time as bloggers. If you say you’re going to cross promote us, please post our content on your website and channels as well. Please provide us some kind of incentive and show us that we are appreciated. Please WORK with us.

Margaux

 

Fundraisers and Charity Events

I’m not really here to knock the amazing work different foundations do (not all of them).

I just find it quite curious how voices continue to be silenced. I feel like there’s so many Autistic advocates who would be very interested in the opportunity to be heard by a room full of people who can make a change by donating funds.

I am aware that companies do this because, for the most part, it makes THEM look good.

Recently, a local Autism Centre had a lavish winter fundraiser with plenty of large companies and corporations who were quite pleased to contribute monitarily.

I was on twitter when my feed was absolutely bombarded with images of the event. My Boyfriend reminded me this was a BUSINESS FUNCTION and of course they are going to exclude Autistic individuals and that it’s more of a PR event.

I have been doing my very best to get the word out because I believe that people who are Autistic can contribute their voice to these kind of issues. When I found out about this event while it was happening I quickly sprang in to action.

Not only did I write each and every company that contributed, but I also wrote the board of directors for the Autism Centre that hosted the event. I did get one response which said I could BUY A TICKET for the event or I could become an “advocate” for this centre by making a $15 donation. Seems kind of backwards.

Please, Include us. Consider us as very knowledgeable advisors. Listen.

Margaux

 

Logan Paul

To those who have struggled or continue to struggle, I am there for you.
I know how hard it is to deal with anxiety/depression/loneliness/social anxiety etc. I deal with these things often and I don’t know what life would be like without struggles.

I am so saddened that there are people out there who feel like they can exploit other people’s pain for their own personal gain.

This is the first time and I hope the last time I hear of this inconsiderate and ignorant individual. I also hope that he becomes less ignorant and learns from this gigantic mistake he made. I still believe he knew what he was doing and what the outcome would be. Seems incredibly calculated. It’s definitely a way to make the national (and international) news media.

Defending his behaviour is minimizing the pain that people suffer on a daily, weekly, yearly, lifetime basis. This person had a family. We need to honour those living and those we’ve lost.

Please seek out your local resource, family and friends for help. (I know that they aren’t always the best.)

YOU MATTER.

Love,

Margaux

My Story: Part 1

I was born near the end of the 80s. A time of plenty.

My entrance in to the world was a rocky one. I was born with a couple of birth defects and had surgery shortly after I was born. I had another surgery months (or weeks?) later.

I grew up in an upper class neighbourhood (in Vancouver, BC Canada) in a big pink house that wasn’t much older than me with my family being the very first owners. The houses surrounding us were mostly heritage homes, few of which are still standing today.

I attended a religion-based private/community school from Nursery 3 up until the 6th grade. It was horrible and I spent nearly every day crying. I’d start my day with a sense of dread, spend the middle of the day battling with my own self esteem as those around me diminished it any chance they got. I’d come home and have one of my parents ask me how school was or what I did. It was the last thing I wanted to answer and I would get scolded for being evasive.

I then transferred to a private school and the very same problems followed me there. 6th grade and part of the 7th grade. I wanted to vanish, forever. The kids were just as cruel but they didn’t spend 9 years of their lives growing up with me- not that it made any kind of difference.

I transferred schools again, this time it was a multi-modal program with another very high price tag for me to attend (yes, the last two schools definitely cost notable chunks of change). I had made a couple of friends, but I still felt like I wasn’t supposed to be there. I wasn’t sure where I would ever fit in. This time, it was a couple of teachers that I clashed with. Mr. H – he got mad at me through my ’emo’ years for wearing a spiked bracelet. He told me it was banned and that I was NEVER to wear it again. I kept asking why? What was wrong with it? I didn’t get a solid answer. I was very upset. I went to the office and the receptionists were talking about me right behind my back. I called my Mom and within NO TIME at all she came to the school and confronted the teacher. She asked him, point-blank, if he thought it was some kind of “S&M thing” and he wouldn’t say anything! She then confronted the receptionists and they admitted they were talking about me.

I love my Mom so much, she’s always been my #1 and ALWAYS been there for me. She’s my best friend.

The second teacher, Mr. F was the art teacher. He told me once that all my art looked the same and constantly excluded me from events that were meant for everyone. It was a struggle to KNOW that i was purposely left out.

This is Part 1 of my story. If you’re interested in knowing more, please let me know.

Love,

Margaux