As some kind of key word to somehow know and understand what “Autism” or “Autistic Disorder” is in layman’s language, it would help but to mention the word “auto.” When this term is appended to other terms such as “auto”matic , “auto”mobile and the like, it is rather easy to have a rudimentary knowledge and appreciation about what is “Autism” in essence and basic manifestation. Thus it is that someone diagnosed to be suffering from an autistic personality disorder acts with certain abnormal predictable features, behaves with some rather strange repetitive elements. “Autistic Disorder” like many other adverse personality constitutions, comes as some kind of an inherited behavioral disequilibrium.
While the said constitutional adversity has a good number of erratic manifestations, following are considered as its more common and prevalent diagnostic features as a qualitative impairment in social interaction:
“Marked impairment in the use of multiple nonverbal behaviors such as eye to eye gaze, facial expression, body postures and gestures to regulate social interaction.”
“Failure to develop peer relationships appropriate to one’s developmental level.”
“Lack of social or emotional reciprocity.”
“Marked impairment in the ability to initiate or sustain a conversations with others.”
“Stereotype and repetitive motor mannerisms… whole body movements.”
(DMS-IV, 299.00, APA, 4th ed., 1995)
Again, it is said that the basic features or manifestation of “Autistic Disorder” consist in the well noticeable abnormal or impaired personality development in socio-affective interaction and communication. In other words, someone autistic has a seriously restricted program of interests and pursuant activities – with the subject party either unconscious or unmindful thereof. As expected, there is no objective socio-ethical or moral question about responsibility or accountability on the part of the autistic person. This is what the same is, this is how the same behaves, and that’s it.
Needless to say, someone autistic may try hard to be otherwise specially when made conscious of what people think and/or say. But the Personality Disorder remains – apparently with no permanent cure found up to this time. It can be said that being simply “quiet” and remaining “quiet” are the over-all traits of someone affected/afflicted with “Autistic Disorder.”