Friday, February 27, 2015

#TheDress Reveals Something Pretty Profound About Autism

I must admit, I got sucked into the dress debate last night. We were having dinner with friends and their teenager daughter asked what colors we saw in the dress. I saw black and blue, my husband saw white and gold. It was pretty much split between the people in the room. I instantly texted friends and posted on FaceBook because I wanted to be right. I COULD NOT see white and gold? How were others seeing it, when it was clearly was black and blue.

This morning, many articles came out, confirming that the dress was blue and black, but I saw pictures with the contrast different, and finally I could see the white and gold. I was perceiving colors as they were, where others were compensating for the poor lighting in the picture.

Among other articles, BuzzFeed posted one entitled "#TheDress Reveals Something Pretty Profound About Autism." The author, Virginia Hughes, brings to light the idea that finally the general public can understand what it is like to have sensory differences, like those diagnosed with Autism. Sensory differences are a characteristic of Autism as of 2013, when the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders included it in the diagnostic criteria for this disorder.

With #thedress, I have a better understanding of the differences individuals with autism may experience when perceiving their environment, and now I have an example from pop culture to better explain these differences when talking to teachers, parents and peers.

Visit BuzzFeed to read the entire article.


 Shelly spent way too much time last night on what color the dress was.

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