It's been an interesting week here at Countering. I've followed some of the suggestions of a few friends regarding the site.
I added a counter less than two weeks ago; that's been a pleasure to see tick up and let me know that I either have a dozen people who come back all the time or a fair amount who give the site a lookover. If it falls somewhere between the two, I will be thrilled.
I created a mirror of Countering at Wordpress, www.counteringaoa.wordpress.com. Gotta get over there and make it a better mirror of this, I suppose. Wordpress is slicker looking, so maybe it will work better for folks who find this site too cluttered. I'll try to keep the content identical, so it won't matter which site you look at.
I created and quickly added friends in as admins a facebook group, CounteringAoA: Following the Science on Autism, http://www.facebook.com/groups.php?ref=sb#/group.php?gid=91368243169. Last check, we are up to 138 members. How lovely is that?
I plotted with Kathleen and Angela on how to move forward on creating an online place to promote a more positive, accepting view of autism, and we added in Leitia to our woo fighting warrior princesses group. She leapt on creating a forum, http://www.raisingautism.co.nr/, and it is now up and running. I hope you'll join us at both the facebook group and Raising Autism, whether you have children on the spectrum or with other special needs or with no labels, just their very own issues.
We'll have more progress on this front in the upcoming months, as Kathleen takes on the webpage and nonprofit side of it. We'll engage in more plotting on how to change how ASDs are portrayed. We'll refine our goals on what we want to accomplish and how best to do so. And where and when to get our woo fighting costumes (capes, bustiers, and go go boots, got it?)! We'll be a busy bunch, but it's time to to make a stand and make sure that our children with ASDs and the adults with ASDs know that we SEE them, accept them, appreciate them as they are. Where help is needed to achieve greater functioning, we want to be there to help. We do that not by bending, folding, spindling or mutilating individuals on the spectrum to fit into a neurotypical world (teach at a college and you quickly realize the myth of neurotypical, both in the students who come through your classes and your colleagues). We do that by promoting an acceptance of diversity and accommodations while as parents guiding our children through the world and suggesting ways to smooth their paths.
Plenty else went on this week, but that's the major bit of it on the Countering front.
Now, to assessing our success (not just mine and my woo fighting friends at Science Rocks, Countering, and Raising Autism, but the larger woo fighting side):
Age of Autism has 621 followers.
Age of Autistics (it's antithesis and the "squatter" -- my ass) has 845 followers.
Age of Autism has 1200 fans.
Countering AoA has 138 members in less than a week.
I hope we will see in the months ahead our numbers surpass AoA. That our group, both at facebook and at Raising Autism, will become supportive, active, dynamic communities where parents and individuals with autism know they'll get a warm welcome, a laugh, a virtual hug, and acceptance. And information to counter the woo and misinformation that abounds out there.
So, spread the word. Let's make a joyful noise!