ABA: The Harms

The field of ABA has done damage to autistic/disabled people, and continues to do damage. We practice in an ableist society, and our therapy for autistic children is built upon ableism. Autistic adults have been telling us for years that ABA is likened to “conversion therapy” for them, and causes many problems for them in the future.

I hope one day our field will be truly helpful and stop causing harm. I don’t know what that will look like. I will keep fighting to change the field until it stops harming, in whatever form that takes. Yes, I am an ABA provider, but that does not mean that I am not fighting to change our field, and to make ABA services truly helpful.

You may have heard that ABA is the “gold standard” for autism treatment. I am here to tell you that autism does not need to be treated. Autistic folks need help navigating a neurotypical world, and there are challenges associated with autism that may need extra support and accommodations, but an autistic child will always be autistic… and that is just fine!

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