The neurodiversity view is that differences aren’t deficits and are part of the mainstream. But it doesn’t mean that “diagnosis” or “disability” are bad words or concepts.
Being diagnosed with a disability gives people protections under the law. It allows kids to have special education or supports at school. And it can help employees get accommodations and other supports at work.
Acknowledging that neurodiversity and disability coexist has other benefits, too:
It makes it less likely that kids will be overlooked or fall through the cracks in school.
It makes it clear that everyone has challenges that deserve support.
It encourages research funding.
It’s important to recognize both neurodiversity and disability. These terms aren’t interchangeable. But each term is valuable. Plus, both terms can sometimes be part of self-identity.
Learn about the
laws that protect people with disabilities
and help them get supports.