Famous personalities who grappled with autism

Famous personalities who grappled with autism

Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) refers to a range of neurodevelopmental disorders that can lead to impaired social interactions, along with communication and language problems. The symptoms of the disease may range from severe handicap to lesser behavioral issue. The patient may also exhibit repetitive and rigid behavior.

Due to trouble in communicating their thoughts and feelings, the patients may find it difficult to understand other’s expectations. Moreover, an autistic person may also find it difficult to express his thoughts and ideas through hands, gestures and even facial expressions.

But despite their inability to communicate and relate to others, patients suffering from ASD may have developed skills in other areas, including art, music, memorizing facts or solving math puzzles. Due to this, they are often found to score higher in nonverbal intelligence tests.

Here is a list of people who made it big in their respective fields in spite of suffering from ASD. The idea is to inspire patients and destigmatize the disease, and spread the word that autistic people are no different and can be assimilated into the society with a little care.

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart: The greatest composer of the world was rather a strange and impulsive man. There is still dispute if he was suffering from Asperger’s syndrome, a form of autism, since he despised staying alone. He was seen making unusual facial expressions and had a constant urge of moving  his hands and feet. From the letters shared between the musician and his family, historians revealed an incident when out of boredom, he would start jumping and hurdling over tables and chairs, and would also act like a cat.

James Durbin: James Durbin, a singer and guitarist, hogged the limelight after he finished fourth on Season 10 of American Idol. He was quite open about his Tourettes and Asperger’s syndromes. His debut album, Memories of a Beautiful Disaster, got wonderful reviews.

Michelangelo Buonarroti: Best known as the sculptor of David and the painter of the ceiling at the Sistine Chapel, he was one of the great descendants of the High Renaissance movement. Notorious for his brusque manner and vile personal hygiene, he was a workaholic who despised social gatherings. This immaterial genius was described by his contemporaries as both bizarre and terrible.

Courtney Love: Actress and songwriter Courtney Love never liked calling herself autistic despite having poor social skills. The disorder was not something that hurt her career in any way. Her rough childhood could be a testimony to the same. She was arrested for shoplifting at the age of 14, moved away and became a stripper two years later.

Boys four times more likely to exhibit symptoms of autism

Autism usually appears during the first three years of life, however, some children may show signs right from birth. There are others who seem to develop normally at first, but may encounter the symptoms when they are 18-36 months old. Boys are four times more likely to exhibit symptoms of autism, as compared to girls. Anyone can suffer from ASD, irrespective of family income, lifestyle, racial, ethnic, or social boundaries or educational levels.

Children who are autistic may show repetitive, stereotyped body movements, such as rocking, pacing or hand flapping. They may have unusual responses to people, attachments to objects and resistance to change in their routines, and may exhibit aggressive or self-injurious behavior. And, at times, they might fail to notice people, objects, or activities in their surroundings. Some children with autism may also develop seizures.

Road to recovery

Any kind of mental health illness can make one’s life hell. But there is hope, provided the symptoms are not ignored and acted upon at the right time. Medication and support can go a long way in making life smooth for anybody suffering from any sort of mental health disorder, including autism.

If you or your loved one is suffering from any mental health issue, the California Mental Health Helpline can help you find one of the best mental health facilities in California. Call at our 24/7 helpline number 855-559-3923 or chat online to seek information about mental health treatment centers in California.