Friday, April 18, 2014

Autism Understanding & Acceptance 2014 Day 19: "The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nighttime"

Another pivotal book for me: The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nighttime.  

Unlike The Reason I Jump, this is not written by a person with autism, but instead was written by someone who had worked with several young men with autism spectrum disorders.  This fictional main character is a young adult male who discovers that the neighbor's dog is dead, and the adventure that ensues when he tries to unravel the mystery of why.  Sounds a little dark, I know.  I must add that the character never says that he has autism, nor do his parents (also characters in the story).  But as you read it, especially for those of us who live in the world of autism, you pick up on what's different about this character very early on.  He creates strict routines that he must follow, rules for what constitutes a good day or a bad day, explains why he does not like the color yellow...all of it completely logical but completely different from any train of thought that us NTs (Neuro Typicals) would have.  Fascinating book - and again, I feel I gained insight as to how the mind of these very different but completely abled brains think.

This book had a wide range of reactions by its readers.  Many people thought it was hilarious.  Others found it very depressing.  I can see why both reactions occur.  For me, I was just completely transfixed by this main character and his thought processes.  

As I'm typing this entry, and thinking about yesterday's post about The Reason I Jump, I'm realizing that much of the reading I've done on the subject of autism, and much of what motivates me, is trying to get inside their brains.   Not books on potential cures, exposing "Big Pharma" or books by another mom whose child has recovered.  Nope.  I want to understand how T thinks, if at all possible.  

My confession: I am fascinated by the autistic mind.  (Good thing, isn't it?)

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