It’s time to start submitting your stims and getting the conversation rolling! The idea of this blog is to explore how stimming is experienced by autistic people, and to build a database of behaviour types. What are your stims? How do they feel? What parameters of the stim are the most relaxing? What music is best for stimming?
I want to hear how happy you all become when you do your favourite stims. I want to see diagrams of what kind of movements have the biggest effect. I want to see pictures of what you imagine when you stim. I ask not just what stims you have, but how you conceptualise stimming as a sensory experience.
I’m interested in what triggers them as well (add warnings if they’re traumatic). One of my major triggers is actually reading about stimming, so this will be an interesting blog to run!
The blog is currently run by Alyssa.
It should be clear to most of you that I’ve almost entirely stopped posting here. Joey has left, and I have neither the time nor spoons to carry it on alone. I think it was a worthwhile project, considering we introduced many people (autistic and allistic) to the concept of stimming. It’s been a blog born out of my excitement about learning the term, and contains every article I’ve read and every video I’ve watched.
I’ve requested moderators here before because I can’t really run it on my own. Now I think I’m going to leave the blog. I no longer have the ideas or energy to be the main contributor. If anyone wants to take over the blog, send your Tumblr email address so I can add you.
In the event that someone does take over, I’ll still be a keen follower. I may even submit videos and ask questions.
But if no one comes forward, I’ll make the blog into an archive of links so people can find the information in future.
I wrote about the concept of ‘running’ in 5 Helpful Stimming Metaphors. In the post I recommended imagining flying over fields or through city streets, and hand flapping as if to move the ground under you. Now when I watch time lapse videos of train or car journeys, I do exactly the same. The ground moves under me, and I sweep it along like spinning a globe.
A good moving timelapse video doesn’t wait long at traffic lights. It has to be relatively long too: 4 minutes can be syncronised with music, but 30 seconds is useless. The pleasing aspects seem to mirror those of rollercoasters, long straights that are punctuated by sharp turns. I like the experience of seeing other cars pulling towards and away from the camera too, as it makes it feel like a shared experience.
Most of my time lapse videos are of London, and there is a precise reason for this. I have talked about Jamie T far too much already to interest you, but I maintain his music is the sound of London. I associate it strongly with the many trips I have made there in the past year, more times in fact than the rest of my life combined. I grew up in a small town, so seeing the fast pace of city life is fascinating.
My stimming seems to be based around hyposensitivity, especially to visual stimuli. I imagine that many of you prefer a relaxed stim, and sometimes I do, but I usually want everything fast. Fast music gives me a goal to reach, and the more I synchronise my movements with it the better. ‘Running’ stims are about escaping anxiety and other unpleasantness.
I guess it’s a well kept secret that you don’t need to go anywhere to achieve that.
I’ve posted some of my favourite London time lapse videos and one from the US. If you have any time lapse videos to submit, or any other type of video, head to the submit page, click ‘submit a text post’ and change it to ‘video’.
I haven’t forgotten about you. I have received your kind and thought-provoking messages. I just haven’t had the spoons to answer them. I’ve been dissociated and my reading comprehension is quite bad. To do these questions justice I need to feel as though I am giving an informative and accurate answer.
I do get a lot of anxiety from feeling too ignorant to comment on any of this. I I worry I’ll be told I’ve got everything wrong or am doing something that isn’t helpful to the autistic community. I guess this is the anxiety that people often get in activist circles. Perhaps it also shows an understanding of privilege, and a wariness about generalising upon the experiences of others.
In any case, if anyone wants to help queue interesting, self-advocating posts and shape the future of this blog, submit your email in a text post. More moderators will mean messages still get dealt with when I don’t feel up to it. I wanted this to be a vibrant community, and it was always my worry that it wouldn’t be successful. We have 175 followers, which should be enough to start a conversation and get some well researched posts together.
It isn’t just that I feel under pressure and want others to share the load. I feel partly responsible for this, because I decided to start the blog. No one has forced me to do it, so I shouldn’t really complain. But I think the conversation is lacking so many voices, and I know that there are many of you who are as passionate about stimming as I am.
I know I’m not the only one who is excited to be having this conversation. I know Joey is too. I know some of you have submitted videos, while 175 of you have come here for a reason. My main point is that the blog should not run on our energy and enthusiasm alone. Not because I feel too tired to keep up the posting rate, but because there is so much more we can achieve together.
Signal boost if you deem it appropriate!