NeuroDiversity, inclusion, & belonging
for parents, caregivers, educators, employers—and anyone who loves or supports neurominorities
Free resources for you
- 10 Ways to Support Autistic College Students
- Are There Benefits to Disclosing My Disability to an Employer?
- College Guide for Students with Disabilities
- Demystifying Autistic Gender
- Double Empathy Problem
- How to Access College Disability Services and Accomodations
- How to Create Neuroinclusion for the Autists in Your Life
- How to Navigate College with ADHD
- Inclusion Can’t Survive Neuronormativity
- Meters: Autistic Self-Care
- Neuroinclusion in the Workplace
- Professional Guide for Working with Students with Disabilities
- Resource Guide for Students with Learning Disabilities
- Resource Guide for Students with Psychiatric Disabilities
- Resource Guide for Students with Physical Disabilities
- This is What Autistiphobia Looks Like: Why Autistic Advocacy Matters
- What Does Neurodivergent-Inclusive Workplace Look Like?
- What does it Mean to be Neurodivergent?
- Why Accessibility Matters for BIPOC Students with Disabilities
Connect with the neurominorities in your life.
If you’re confused about neurodiversity and neurodivergence, you’re not alone. As the neurodiversity and disability civil rights movements continue to rise, it’s easy to get lost in misinformation.
But you certainly need to learn how neurominority minds work, what we value, and what challenges we face to gain our trust and support us.
Even seemingly “small” errors like refusing to accommodate someone without a diagnosis, disbelieving unique perspectives, and mistakenly describing neurominorities with inaccurate (often medicalized) terms, can weaken personal and professional relationships.
I’m here to help.
In my work as an university classroom instructor, life coach to Autistic teens and adults, and (neuro)diversity and inclusion advocate, I’ve applied the neurodiversity paradigm, research, lived experience, and deep empathy to coach and mentor countless neurodivergent people, their loved ones, the professionals who support them, and the companies who employ them.
Everyday I maintain my personal wellness and success by living the values of the neurodiversity paradigm. Because true neuroinclusion—neurobelonging—stems from neurodiversity paradigm.
I’d love to teach you.
Who is this for?
Anyone who supports neurominorities, whether you’re neurotypical or neurodivergent. I work with caregivers, typically parents, as well as educators and managers.
support your neurodivergent loved ones
support your neurodivergent employees
support your neurodivergent students
For parents, families and caregivers
I regularly coach parents of neurominorities, and would love to help you and your neurodivergent loved ones navigate common challenges like meltdowns, executive functioning, burnout, sensory overwhelm, advocacy, accommodations, and school and career planning.
Plus I’ll equip you with relevant resources that will guide you on your path toward neuroinclusion. So you can your loved one can truly connect and prioritize joy.
I’ve spoken with many employers on the topic of neurodivergence, equipping them to better support your neurodivergent employees.
I’m happy to answer any questions you may have about neurodivergence and neurodiversity, and will provide you with the knowledge, resources, and strategies you need to support and advocate for the disabled and neurodivergent people in your remote or in-person workforce.
To fully include and support neurominorities you must know the neurodiversity paradigm. I taught a variety of undergraduate writing courses for five years while earning a Ph.D. So I’m familiar with the challenge of teaching classrooms of diverse learners.
My bespoke neurodiversity trainings are universally designed to equip not only caregivers and employers, but also educators with the knowledge and skills to support the neurominorities in their lives.
Hire me and you’ll learn about the neurodiversity paradigm from an experienced advocate who has worked with many Autistic and nonautistic professionals.
I’ll work with you or your teaching staff to equip you to better support your neurodivergent students, answer any and all questions, present different neurotypes, explain terminology, and share resources to promote continued self-learning.
“The Slippery Rock University community had the honor of welcoming Bernard Grant to speak on a virtual panel regarding the disparate impacts of COVID-19. A neurodiversity champion, Bernard spoke of their own experiences during the pandemic and their expertise being an autism personal coach. The university community greatly benefited from Bernard’s thoughtful insights and contributions, highlighting autistic and neurodivergent experiences and voices.”
“Bernard has everything a great coach needs. The combination of their instincts, education, lived experiences, and their ability to ask questions so the client understands their own needs, all make Bernard exceptional. Our conversations leave me feeling thankful and hopeful.“
Bernard came highly recommended from an independent education consultant to our neurodiverse family two years ago. They offer excellent life coaching to me, as a neurotypical mom and wife to a son and spouse who are neurodivergent.
Whether in 1:1 or family sessions, Bernard’s appreciative inquiry approach emphasizes assets and agency. Warning: Bernard’s questions will make you think critically and carefully! They often share resources as follow-up tools we can use to navigate life better together. Scheduling is convenient and simple. All of us have benefited from Bernard’s helpful and timely services.
“Whenever I have a question, need advice, or need a different perspective on something, whether it’s about autism or life in general, I know I can count on Bernard. Their ability to tease out the key issues, contributing problems, and provide sound logic to help me frame my thoughts is among the best I’ve ever seen. When I engage with them in dialogue on any topic, I know it will be a fruitful conversation because of the care they take to research the topic and provide an unbiased perspective through their unique lens.
If you ever have the opportunity to connect with Bernard, please do yourself the favor and take the time to do so. You will absolutely love the conversation and see their love for humanity. If you are ever in the position of interviewing them for a job, please take the time to explore their amazing reasoning and problem-solving skills—they are top-notch and will be a powerful asset to your organization.“
The neurodiversity paradigm
Short for neurological diversity, the term neurodiversity refers to the variety of all human minds. This natural concept highlights the infinite variances in human neurology that shape each person’s thinking and behavior styles.
Neurodiversity is a biological fact that stems from biodiversity, the variety of all living organisms on Earth. Neuro means “nerve,” and refers to the human nervous system. Diversity means “variety” and is the measure of a given variable within a population.
If skin, eye, and hair colors—and body sizes, gender identities, and sexual, religious, and professional preferences—are forms of human diversity, then so is human neurology. And while individual humans cannot be neurodiverse, any space that contains at least two humans is neurodiverse.
All humans have neurology, so neurodiversity includes all humans. Everyone thinks differently, as human neurology is shaped by each person’s genetics, environments, and the experiences they have within those environments.
The neurodiversity paradigm recognizes that while most cognitive styles are typical (neurotypical/neuromajority) many others diverge from typicality (neurotypicality). These cognitive styles are neurodivergences.
The neurodiversity movement
Everyone follows paradigms—mental models, frameworks. Neurodivergent advocates created the neurodiversity paradigm to refute and liberate themselves from the pathology paradigm, bolstered by the DSM and autism industrial complex.
Under the neurodiversity paradigm, divergent minds are not “disordered,” a subjective value judgement with no biological basis. All human minds (neurodiversity) are vital forms of diversity.
When accepted and internalized, the neurodiversity paradigm provides a model of living free of judgement (of “disorder”), enabling neurominorities. The neurodiversity paradigm fuels the neurodiversity movement—a civil rights movement that adheres to the social model of disability, challenging the pathologization, medicalization, discrimination, and general social inequality society imposes on neurological minorities.
Diversity fosters stability. By viewing neurodivergences as natural variations in human cognition, a logical way of viewing human minds, the neurodiversity paradigm opposes the pathology paradigm created by the medical model to dismantle oppressive social dynamics that disable neurominorities.
The neurodiversity movement and paradigm exist to dismantle neuronormativity, creating a world in which all humans can live authentic lives.
What is autism?
A more productive question is “Who are Autistic people?” I’ll start with a short definition of the Autistic neurotype:
Autism is a neurotype, a cognitive style attuned to monotropic, logical, systems thinking. Each Autist lives in their own space and time.
First, the medical community’s definition of autism is profit-driven, incorrect, and autistiphobic—ableist.
The DSM’s “diagnostic” criteria for Autistic people is a list of value judgements and psychological projections. Autistic people are the true experts on autism, as allistic people cannot experience life Autistically.
Autism is a natural neurological variant (a neurotype), a cognitive style attuned to monotropic, conceptual, systems, and logical thinking. Each Autistic neurotype is specialized, unique, though Autists share many similarities.
Each Autist lives in their own individual spaces at their own individual times. Autists are factual, direct speakers, and most adhere to fairness and honesty, and are devoted to their interests and values.
Most Autists find neurotypical culture and communication confusing, just as most neurotypicals are confused by Autistic culture and communication. (See: the double empathy problem.)
Autistic minds consistently absorb large amounts of information from their environments. So Autists tend to notice details neurotypical people tend to miss and can experience sensory overwhelm due to lights, sounds, and scents that neurotypical people can tune out or fail to notice.
Autistic disabilities are wide-ranging and are often inconsistent between each day and each person. Common Autistic challenges include executive functioning, situational mutism, unreliable short-term memory, the double empathy problem, and vulnerability to discrimination, including physical and psychological abuse (attitudinal barriers).
Common Autistic strengths include logical, pattern, conceptual, visual, and orthogonal, non-linear thinking; visual and long-term memory; intuitive empathy and creativity; advanced analytic, research and leadership skills; and hyperfocus/tenacity.
Calmness during emergency situations is another Autistic strength, of which there are many. So Autists work at every level of every profession. Though traditional workplaces are commonly hostile towards Autistic professionals, and to disabled professionals in general.
Note: Autism is simply one neurotype. And many neurodivergent people are multiply neurodivergent, which means their neurology contains multiple neurodivergences. An example: many Autistics are also ADHDers.
There are many different cognitive styles within the human population. These include bipolar, dyspraxia, neurotypical, synesthesia, dyslexia, dyscalculia, PDA, ADHD (VAST, attention hyperactive, kinetic), gifted intellect, narcissism, Machiavellianism, psychopathy, traumatic brain injury (TBI), Down syndrome, Tourette syndrome, etc.
Contact me if you’d like to learn more.