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      Depression, Mental Health and Crisis Support   06/04/2017

      Depression, Mental Health and Crisis Support   Depression and other mental health difficulties are common amongst people on the autistic spectrum and their carers.   People who are affected by general mental health difficulties are encouraged to receive and share information, support and advice with other forum members, though it is important to point out that this exchange of information is generally based on personal experience and opinions, and is not a substitute for professional medical help.   There is a list of sources of mental health support here: <a href="http://www.asd-forum.org.uk/forum/index.php?showtopic=18801" target="_blank">Mental Health Resources link</a>   People may experience a more serious crisis with their mental health and need urgent medical assistance and advice. However well intentioned, this is not an area of support that the forum can or should be attempting to offer and we would urge members who are feeling at risk of self-harm or suicide to contact either their own GP/health centre, or if out of hours contact NHS Direct on 0845 4647 or to call emergency services 999.   We want to reassure members that they have our full support in offering and seeking advice and information on general mental health issues. Members asking for information in order to help a person in their care are seeking to empower both themselves and those they represent, and we would naturally welcome any such dialogue on the forum.   However, any posts which are deemed to contain inference of personal intent to self-harm and/or suicide will be removed from the forum and that person will be contacted via the pm system with advice on where to seek appropriate help.   In addition to the post being removed, if a forum member is deemed to indicate an immediate risk to themselves, and are unable to be contacted via the pm system, the moderating team will take steps to ensure that person's safety. This may involve breaking previous confidentiality agreements and/or contacting the emergency services on that person's behalf.   Sometimes posts referring to self-harm do not indicate an immediate risk, but they may contain material which others find inappropriate or distressing. This type of post will also be removed from the public forum at the moderator's/administrator's discretion, considering the forum user base as a whole.   If any member receives a PM indicating an immediate risk and is not in a position (or does not want) to intervene, they should forward the PM to the moderating team, who will deal with the disclosure in accordance with the above guidelines.   We trust all members will appreciate the reasoning behind these guidelines, and our intention to urge any member struggling with suicidal feelings to seek and receive approproiate support from trained and experienced professional resources.   The forum guidelines have been updated to reflect the above.   Regards,   The mod/admin team


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Everything posted by Aeolienne

  1. 'Cruel' pauper funerals don't allow family and friends to mourn loved onesThere is no ceremony to attend if a pauper funeral is organised by Exeter City CouncilFamily members are not able to attend services paid for by Exeter City Council - also known as a pauper's funeral.In such instances the local authority pays a third party to carry out a closed cremation of the body.No ceremony is held and the council is not told when the cremations are taking place - so it is not possible for the family and friends of the dead person to attend.An investigation carried out by the Sunday Times said that in a leaked letter a city council official told a grieving man: “The body is passed to the crematorium in Exeter, who arrange a closed crematorium...this is not open to friends or family, I’m afraid.”Earlier this month, Devon Live reported how residents in Magdalen Road, Exeter, were planning their own fitting farewell for popular community figure Monica Law, 82, after being told a closed cremation had been arranged for her by Exeter City Council which they were unable to attend.In response to the Sunday Times investigation, an Exeter City Council spokesman said: "The council pays for the services of a third party to carry out ‘closed cremations’ in these circumstances.“In these cases we may write to friends or family informing them of the situation. However, there is no ceremony to attend."Because of this arrangement the council is not aware of when these funerals take place.”More than 110 MPs have told Theresa May to act on the funeral poverty “crisis” following the Sunday Times investigation.The MPs signed a letter to the prime minister describing the findings as “a national disgrace”. They demand a system to stop councils using “sickening” tactics to deter poverty-stricken residents applying for public-health or pauper’s funerals.“Councils across the UK are indulging in cynical punishment of the poor."A no-frills funeral is one thing, but it is unfathomable that the poorest families are being banned from attending those funerals full stop,” it reads.“One woman was told ‘don’t bother’ when trying to attend her brother’s public-health funeral last December. This behaviour must end.”The campaign is led by Carolyn Harris, Labour MP for Swansea East, whose son, Martin, eight, was killed in a road accident in 1989. She used a load and a “whip-around” to pay for the funeral.Exeter MP Ben Bradshaw said: “This feels like we’re returning to the cruelty and indignity of the Victorian age."Funerals are when we have the chance to say goodbye to our loved ones and celebrate their lives with family and friends."Their dramatically rising cost and the growing poverty suffered by some families under this Government are making tragic cases like this all the more common.“People can apply for help with funeral expenses from the Government’s Social Fund, but this has not kept up with the rising cost of funerals and the Government should review this as a matter of urgency.”Source: Exeter Express & Echo via Devon Live
  2. Moments That Relax You

    Another discount is available on Forest Holidays, this time for 5%: More info
  3. The Australian Interrogative Intonation

    Even worse is the excessive use of "like". Aaagh!
  4. We should create our own country. 悠哉國.

    Why? What if none of his descendants want to do the job, or are any good at it? Is it really fair to subject anyone to such expectations? Look at the damage caused to the current heir to the British throne: Prince Charles, a victim of monarchists' cruelty (originally written in 2003, prior to Charles's second marriage)
  5. We should create our own country. 悠哉國.

    Royalist? How are we going to choose a monarch?
  6. reasons to smile and be happy.

    Here's another one, the aptly-named Frensham Great Pond near Farnham in Surrey: The secret beach in Surrey that you might not know exists
  7. It's all well and good having assistance to "deal with social signals in workplace situations" but there's the small(!) matter of having to get through the interview process first.
  8. TallStick is an early stage social enterprise creating digital solutions that support autistic children, their parents and teachers. They have a long-term goal of open sourcing data in order to model the cognitive function of those with autism and improve their lives, and are looking for feedback from parents of autistic children (up to age 16) Link to survey
  9. Hello guys!

    This is a mixed-gender forum. Please address us collectively as "everyone" or "people".
  10. Aspie meet ups

    Since I last posted, two Meetup groups in my area have come in to being, Adults with Autism - West Midlands and Adults with Autism, Leamington Spa. I have attended some of their meetups, albeit infrequently. The first one (Birmingham-based) have settled for the first Sunday of each month which is no good for me as that's when I volunteer at Foundry Wood nature reserve.
  11. should we stop artificial inteligence?

    On the subject of artificial intelligence... Google Glass is a hit for children with autism
  12. I took part in the first series, when I was 40. However my contribution was reduced to a short film on BBC3. I admit to feeling quite envious when I watched the second series and saw how the format had changed. If only I could have benefitted from assistance with creative job searching techniques; maybe if I had the programme makers wouldn't have needed to fake a happy ending. Contrary to what the video implies, what I was actually offered was a temporary job as an agency worker at National Grid, earning less than a graduate trainee. Less than a year later I was told that I hadn't displayed sufficient analytical ability to be upgraded to a permanent role, and out I went. So much for Aspies and their special talents!
  13. Learning French - Aspergers

    Check out this new initiative from Aston University (in Birmingham): National centre set up to promote learning all kinds of subjects in a foreign language Year 10s at one school make a grade-and-a-half more progress after learning their usual school subjects in French A national centre dedicated to the teaching of school subjects in a foreign language has been launched. The scheme, led by Aston University and Bordesley Green Girls’ School with input from Birmingham City Council, forms part of efforts to increase uptake of students deciding to continue studying modern languages, and to raise achievement levels across all subjects. Learning Through Languages UK will connect the existing community of teachers and lecturers that deliver lessons in a foreign language, known as CLIL (Content and Language Integrated Learning). The ultimate aim is to develop a ‘golden thread’ of language learning from primary school through to university. Dr Emmanuelle Labeau, Co-Director of the Centre for Language Research (CLaRA) at Aston University and one of the lead academics, said: “Across the country there are pockets of activity in CLIL, but these remain fragmented and lack sustainability. Evidence of CLIL’s application in other countries has shown how a national centre can spread the word and use of CLIL and consequently the improvement in both language acquisition and achievement. We believe that language is a skill that can be accessed by all, and given the right approach, children from any context and at any level can achieve success.” Bordesley Green Girls’ School has seen a rise in all key stage three subjects thanks to the adoption of CLIL. 89% of students at the school study languages at GCSE and 81% of those girls said that they enjoy the subject. Judith Woodfield Head Teacher said: “Year 10 students who have studied geography, business and science in French in years 7 and 8 are making over a grade-and-a-half more progress in humanities subjects, a grade higher in French and two-thirds of a grade higher in other Ebacc subjects. “We believe that our international curriculum is developing the problem solving skills needed to access the more challenging GCSEs. Nationally modern foreign languages are not being taken up by all students as they are perceived as being harder. Our students enter the school well below the national average, but their tremendous motivation towards languages and learning subjects through languages is ensuring that that they have the best possible chance of reaching higher levels of attainment.” The centre was launched at the school on Friday April 27th, with representatives from the Department for Education, teachers’ associations and distinguished scholars due to attend. Original article
  14. Autistic Writer Seeking Readers

    Do you really consider yourself to be an autism suffererer? (emphasis mine)
  15. What's so hilarious?
  16. Former altar boy facing years in jail for planting home-made bomb on Tube train A weapons-obsessed student is facing years behind bars for planting a home-made bomb on a busy Tube train. Former altar boy Damon Smith built the device at home with a £2 clock from Tesco after finding an online al Qaida article entitled Make A Bomb In The Kitchen Of Your Mom. Smith, 20, claimed it was a hoax but was found guilty of possession of an explosive substance with intent following a trial at the Old Bailey. The autistic defendant, who smiled in the dock, will be sentenced by Judge Richard Marks QC later. On the morning of October 20 last year, Smith, then aged 19, packed a rucksack with explosives and deadly ball-bearing shrapnel as he headed to college in Holloway, north London. He was caught on CCTV as he travelled on the Jubilee Line, casually flicking through a text book before getting off and leaving the bomb on the floor, timed to go off within minutes. At least 10 passengers were in the carriage at the time and some of them spotted the abandoned rucksack and alerted the driver. The driver at first dismissed it as lost property and took it into his cab and carried on towards North Greenwich, jurors were told. During the journey, he spotted wires coming out of the bag and raised the alarm as he pulled into the station. Had Smith's bomb worked, it would have exploded just as commuters were being ordered off the platform, the jury heard. The defendant went on to college and, on returning home in the evening, checked the internet for news of what he had done. Upon his arrest by counter-terrorism officers, Smith admitted making the bomb but claimed he only meant it to spew harmless smoke as a Halloween joke. He told police he had been inspired from watching someone on a YouTube channel called Trollstation doing a bomb prank. A search of Smith's home in Rotherhithe, south London, revealed his fixation with guns, explosives and other weapons. Police seized a blank-firing self-loading pistol and a BB gun, both bought legally, as well as a knuckleduster and a knife which he showed off in an online video. Police also uncovered torn-off scraps of shredded paper with bomb-making instructions on it and a "shopping list" of components. Smith told police he was interested in Islam but denied being an extremist even though he posed next to an image of the Brussels-born Islamic terrorist alleged to have masterminded the attacks in Paris in November 2015 In his defence, extracts of a psychiatric report were read out confirming an autism spectrum disorder. He had been interested in bomb-making since the age of 10 and said it was "something to do when he was bored". Smith, who grew up living with his mother in Newton Abbot, Devon, said he had thought about putting a bomb in a park but decided it would be "more funny" to delay train passengers. Original link: http://www.aol.co.uk/news/2017/05/25/former-altar-boy-facing-years-in-jail-for-planting-home-made-bom/
  17. Cambridge University's Autism Research Centre is conducting a study in order to identify changes in the human DNA which contribute to autism and/or mathematical ability. This research project aims to understand whether individuals diagnosed with autism have specific variations in their genes that contribute to both autism and mathematical ability. More information
  18. Moments That Relax You

    Writing in today's Guardian, Simon Jenkins appears to be accusing the Forestry Commission of privatisation on the sly by selling off its stake in Forest Holidays. How much of this is scaremongering? For instance, he claims that: Chalet parks in public forests offend every dictate of rural planning. They are space-hungry, traffic-generating and energy-inefficient. Today, buildings (and jobs) should be concentrated on and around existing settlements, not left to sprawl wherever the money is good. Surely whether chalet parks generate traffic depends how they're run. For instance, they could have: up-to-date information about public transport access readily available both on their website and at the forest park (merely mentioning Traveline doesn't count), a shop on site within walking distance, the option to have groceries delivered on arrival, deals with local restaurants, discounted rates for anyone not bringing a car, a shuttle bus service from the nearest railway station etc. Moreover, is Simon Jenkins seriously suggesting that people should only take holidays "on and around existing settlements"? Might as well camp in your local park! Will we stand by and watch the privatisation of our forests?
  19. Gingerism

    "Being born with red hair made me a world champion" says triumphant Titian teenage taekwondoka Jordyn Smith.
  20. The Asperger's Moneysaver

    Moneysaving guru Holly Smith, who has Asperger Syndrome, lifts the lid on her condition and how it helps her to help others find bargains and save cash. Every week Holly shares coupons, deals and moneysaving tips and tricks on social media, and reaches over 7 million people. This uber savvy supersaver even went viral a few years agp with a jaw-dropping stunt, which saw her do a £1164.39 shop paid for entirely by coupons. While Holly has built an amazing online community and is an inspiration to many, she has had a challenging life because of her Asperger Syndrome. A form of Autism, it has meant she’s suffered at the hands of bullies and struggles with social interaction. But it has also given her the passion and single-minded gift for moneysaving. Diagnosed aged 26, Holly’s Asperger’s brings many life challenges, but it fuels her love of money saving and making a difference to other people’s purses. Meeting her family, we’ll gain a candid insight into her Asperger’s and how it impacts on her life. Putting her moneysaving skills into action, Holly meets chronic credit card spender Amber, who is living beyond her means and heading toward deep financial water if her habits don’t change. Holly challenges Amber to give up her cards and live 'cash-only' for a week to see if she can stay within a £100 budget. How will she manage without her precious plastic? As Amber wrangles with moderating her online shopping and coffee buying habits, Holly shows her ways to make her money go further, for instance through ‘wombling’ - a clever way to save money at supermarkets by finding discount-code receipts in car parks or shopping trollies. As well as Amber’s money saving journey, Holly meets someone else with Asperger Syndrome for the first time. Rosie, who is at university and wants to become a teacher, is an inspiration to Holly who left school aged 15 with no qualifications. She discovers how attitudes and understanding of her condition is changing and people have more hope today than ever to succeed to pursue their ambitions in a society that is not always understanding towards people who are different. Catch up at: Radio 1 Stories: The Asperger's Moneysaver
  21. On the face of it, a very similar premise to the BBC's Employable Me series. Still, raising awareness is all to the good (so long as they don't assume that Aspies only want to do software testing). Catch up here: https://www.my5.tv/the-special-needs-employment-agency/season-1
  22. An alleged computer hacker will find out later if he has successfully challenged a ruling that he can be extradited to the US. Lauri Love, 32, from Stradishall (nr Newmarket), Suffolk, is suspected of hacking into FBI, US Central Bank and Nasa systems. Speaking on the BBC's Today programme earlier his father said his son was "very distressed" and "afraid". Two judges sitting at the High Court in London are expected to give their decision on Mr Love's appeal later. Lord Chief Justice Lord Burnett and Mr Justice Ouseley heard argument on his behalf during a hearing in November that extradition would not be in the "interests of justice" for a number of reasons. These included the "high risk" that Mr Love, who suffers [sic] from Asperger syndrome, would kill himself. Lauri Love: Hacking suspect awaits extradition appeal decision
  23. BBC Project - Aspergers and Employment

    This report The graduate employment gap: Expectations versus reality may be of interest: Link I wonder if the aforementioned Ben is contributing to the lower average salaries of law graduates?
  24. BBC Chris Packham - Aspergers and me

    The bit about him being in a relationship with a zookeeper surprised me a bit, because I'd seen him quoted in press releases by the Captive Animals Protection Society (who are anti-zoos). Then again, just because he gives them the odd soundbite doesn't mean he buys into their entire philosophy. It's a bit like Martina Navratilova lending her support to PeTA's anti-fur campaign whilst turning a blind eye to their blanket opposition to animal experimentation ("Even if it led to a cure for Aids, we'd still be against it"). Here's a rather provocative piece by Chris in his capacity as a zookeeper's significant other: Why killing Marius the giraffe was justified - even though it's a PR disaster
  25. He was fired from Google for arguing that men may be more suited to working in tech than women. Now James Damore opens up about his regrets – and how autism may have shaped his experience of the world "I see things differently": James Damore on his autism and the Google memo