Girls, low birth weight and the Autism Whisperer

If you have read the newspapers you will be aware that there has been no shortage of newsworthy stories related to Autism. The research into mapping regions of the brain continues to be hot news, we are now being told by the US-based Center for Disease Control and Prevention that girls with low birth weight are more likely to have an Autistic Spectrum Disorder.

However, the topic that interested us was about Jim Carrey. It seems that his partner Jenny McCarthy has dubbed him ‘The Autism Whisperer’. Ms McCarthy has an Autistic son and Jim Carrey has discovered that this little boy responds better when he is whispered to, indeed it was reported that this child did not respond
to ‘normal’ speaking volume. Of course there are many possible reasons why this may be good for this child. However one of the reasons may be that this child is responding because he suffers from hypersensitivity and as a result doesn’t cope with loud noises which result in a sensory overload (common in ASDs). It is therefore likely that Jim Carrey has discovered sensory overload in Autistic children and is displaying good Autism practise by altering his own behaviour rather than making expectations of the child.

Those who have been on our Autism training courses will know that we promote the Triad of Imparments along with sensory differences as being amongst the key areas of knowledge necessary to understanding ASDs (see diagram bottom of page). Additionally we believe that sensory differences underpin everything and should be addressed first.

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