What is Neurodivergence?

“Neurodivergent” is not a diagnosis. It is not a term in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5). Since it is not an official diagnosis, it is used as an umbrella term in an effort to move away from pathologizing mental disability.

Although advocacy for neurodiversity acceptance begun with autism and the management thereof, it has grown to include many other neurodivergent types and mental health illnesses, such as bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, anxiety, obsessive-compulsive disorder and depression, to move away from the medical model of disability.

The more society accept and understand that people’s brains work differently, the easier it would be for neurodiverse people to function and thrive in society and move away from the stigma attached to mental health illnesses.

“Indeed, as at least one study on first person narratives indicates, it is precisely the case that schizophrenic spectrum persons tend to flourish, like everyone else, when they come to accept and affirm themselves for who they are.

The schizophrenic spectrum, in other words, must be welcomed into the arms of the already blossoming neurodiversity movement – where it could be seen, as with autism, a reclaimed way of being rather than merely an imposed label to reject.”