Taylor Morris is a high school senior who was diagnosed with Autism when she was 2 years old. She started as an advocate for Autism and Asperger’s Syndrome at age 17 with a simple 10-minute video. Since then she has started a video blog called – ‘Meet Taylor Morris’ and she is regular speaker in the webinars held by Autism Women’s Network. Watch the video, find out more about Taylor and read a commentary by Mohua Chatterjee here.
Sources: facts and picture [http://autismwomensnetwork.org/bio/morris] and
Taylor Morris is a high school senior who was diagnosed with Autism when she was 2 years old. She started as an advocate for Autism and Asperger’s Syndrome at age 17 with a simple 10-minute video. That video was supposed to be an awareness video about what it is to be like when a child is Autistic. It was meant to give an oversight of the Autism and learning tool for parents with Autistic Children. Autism is not a visible disability; the child with Autism has difficulty communicating with the outside world. To others they might appear to be rude, unruly children not trying hard enough to learn things which are taught. In reality, it is not true, an Autistic child feels trapped inside a world of his/her own from which nothing reaches the outside world.
Children learn a lot from the environment, about appropriateness of behavior, but a child with Autism has to be taught. Autistic people are often talented and good with detail oriented jobs. In her Youtube video, Taylor Morris talked about her stages of life, while she struggled and finally succeeded to reach the “normal” world. She expressed her displeasure about not being able to touch fleece, it might sound weird to people who doesn’t feel that way, however there are people who hates a particular food or have allergic reaction to peanuts they are considered “normal” according to standard definition of normalcy. Actually the word “normal” cannot be defined precisely and it really varies from person to person. She derives pleasure in being able to do things differently. Taylor’s success story started with her video on you tube, it was apparent from the number of shares, her audience wanted more of it. She started a video blog called-Meet Taylor Morris. She made her debut as a runaway model for the First Annual New York Autism Fashion Show. She is regular speaker in the webinars held by Autism Women’s Network.
Commentary by Mohua Chatterjee –
More often than not, people sound like ableist, without even realizing their mistake. Due to Hollywood’s portrayal of Autistic individuals, people construct stereotypes about Autistic children and adults. Not all People with Autism are Mathematical genius or musical prodigies. Some Autistic children could be talented, but that could be true for children with other form of disabilities as well. Taylor Morris in her video asked a rhetorical question to audience about the definition of normal. She also said how relative the word normal is! She is proud of her accomplishments without being “normal” in other people’s terms. Autism is the most common form of disability in America, yet people seem to care less about it. Taylor Morris story is a testimony to the fact, Autism may not be a hindrance to an independent life, but it could become a special ability to see things from a different perspective. Taylor Morris’s story is an also an example of the fact -people with Autism can live an independent, happy productive life, if they are taken care of by their parents from childhood and do not think of their children as “hopeless”.