Viewpoint: Why we need to better understand sexual orientation, gender identity in autism

genderdysphoria
Image credit: Dan Page/theispot

In contemporary media, portrayals of autistic people are typically stereotyped and conventional: heterosexual, cisgender and, more often than not, naïve. Lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, questioning/queer and similar (LGBTQ+) autistic identities, unfortunately, remain taboo.

However, emerging evidence suggests that autistic people are more likely to identify outside of conventional genders and sexualities than the general population is.

So what does it mean to be autistic and gender-diverse? To find out, we followed 22 autistic gender-diverse adolescents for nearly two years5.

Most of the autistic adolescents recalled having gender-diverse inclinations in early childhood. However, many were reluctant to express their gender identity because they worried about bias and harassment. And yet it seemed urgent to most of them to address their gender needs.

Related article:  Understanding the 'little brain' could be key to treating autism, addiction

[O]ne-third of the participants said other people had questioned their gender diversity because they are autistic. For example, they said people had told them that their gender diversity is an obsession rather than a ‘real’ experience, or that the experience is a feature of autism itself. They found these assumptions distressing.

We know that one of the most protective factors for youth in a gender or sexual-orientation minority is understanding and support from important people in their lives. This is likely to be even more true for those on the autism spectrum.

Read full, original post: Why we need to respect sexual orientation, gender diversity in autism

Outbreak
Outbreak Daily Digest
Biotech Facts & Fallacies
Talking Biotech
Genetics Unzipped
Video: Test everyone – Slovakia goes its own way to control COVID

Video: Test everyone – Slovakia goes its own way to control COVID

As Europe sees record coronavirus cases and deaths, Slovakia is testing its entire adult population. WSJ's Drew Hinshaw explains how ...
mag insects image superjumbo v

Disaster interrupted: Which farming system better preserves insect populations: Organic or conventional?

A three-year run of fragmentary Armageddon-like studies had primed the journalism pumps and settled the media framing about the future ...
dead bee desolate city

Are we facing an ‘Insect Apocalypse’ caused by ‘intensive, industrial’ farming and agricultural chemicals? The media say yes; Science says ‘no’

The media call it the “Insect Apocalypse”. In the past three years, the phrase has become an accepted truth of ...
globalmethanebudget globalcarbonproject cropped x

Infographic: Cows cause climate change? Agriculture scientist says ‘belching bovines’ get too much blame

A recent interview by Caroline Stocks, a UK journalist who writes about food, agriculture and the environment, of air quality ...
organic hillside sweet corn x

Organic v conventional using GMOs: Which is the more sustainable farming?

Many consumers spend more for organic food to avoid genetically modified products in part because they believe that “industrial agriculture” ...
benjamin franklin x

Are most GMO safety studies funded by industry?

The assertion that biotech companies do the research and the government just signs off on it is false ...
favicon

Environmental Working Group: EWG challenges safety of GMOs, food pesticide residues

Known by some as the "Environmental Worrying Group," EWG lobbies for tighter GMO legislation and famously puts out annual "dirty dozen" list of fruits and ...
m hansen

Michael Hansen: Architect of Consumers Union ongoing anti-GMO campaign

Michael K. Hansen (born 1956) is thought by critics to be the prime mover behind the ongoing campaign against agricultural biotechnology at Consumer Reports. He is an ...
News on human & agricultural genetics and biotechnology delivered to your inbox.
Optional. Mail on special occasions.
Send this to a friend