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2/24 - Application of Neurodiversity

laurentanel's picture

While reading Nick Walker’s blog titled “Neurodiversity: Some Basic Terms and Definitions” I had a few questions relating to the adoption of the term “neurodivergent”. The term is defined as, “having a brain that functions in ways that diverge significantly from the dominant societal standards of ‘normal’.” Just by reading this, it is an easy to grasp concept. However, when put into the social context of our society, where if the line of ‘significantly’ drawn? If all human mines are part of a large neurodiverse scale, where is the definition of those that would be considered divergent? Ideally, this would not have to be questioned if all minds were treated equally. But what if we also factor in a medical perspective? Doctors think in pathology and western medicine is based on diagnoses and categorizing people. How would the more holistic approach of neurodiversity be incorporated into a medical setting? I feel that this idea of neurodiversity misses the problem that a lot of people face when reaching out for health care. Many people are discriminated against and judged by doctors if their neurodivergence does not meet society’s stereotyped standards. The neurodiversity paradigm claims to reject pathology of largely innate neurodivergence. However, the structure of our current medical system does not make this route very possible if seeking treatment is the goal.