Thursday, May 14, 2020

Spectrum's Incel article and comments from "sex therapist" Amy Gravino and neurodiversity proponent Sara Luterman

A new article in Spectrum magazine on Incels has been recently gaining traction.  For those who don't know, Incel is a contraction for the words involuntary celibate or people (usually men) who can't find a sexual partner who want one.  The old saw misery loves company rings true here in that there have been a variety of forums on Reddit and other places where these men have been able to hook up and commiserate.

There has been some controversy in this movement in that a small percentage of them have engaged in nasty misogynistic rants against women.  Some of them have even threatened outright violence.  A very few of them have even committed murder.  The most well-known example of this is Elliot Rodger, "the virgin killer".  He's an individual whose mother labeled him a high functioning autistic in divorce papers.  Frustrated at not being able to find a girlfriend or even knowing how to ask a woman for a date, he went on a killing spree, murdering several women.  Alek Minassian, another individual, praised Rodger and then ran over some persons with a van, frustrated at not being able to have sex.

Because of these outliers, there has been a tendency to paint autistic men who can't find girlfriends with a broad brush and label us as "entitled" "stalkers" or bad people.

The problems of involuntary celibacy are very real for many autistic men.  The vast majority are not violent or misogynists who have a feeling of "entitlement".  We just want to have normal heterosexual relationships the way non-handicapped men do.  It is wrong to label us all this way and it does not help the situation.

But what if one of the people is someone who is a counselor who wants to give autistic individuals (as far as I know only men and no women) advice about sex and labels themselves "The Dr. Ruth of autism"  An individual named Amy Gravino has done this.

These are strange words from someone who claims they are a sex advisor like Dr. Ruth and states they want to help autistic men find dates and make a living from it.

I not only believe these comments are not helpful, but they are sexist and ableist bigotry.

Ms. Gravino obtained a masters degree in Applied Behavior Analysis from a lower tier college.  Afterwards, she became a "certified autism specialist" from some diploma mill.  She has a job at Rutgers University in New Jersey where she plies her trade without any type of state clinical license.

I never felt I was entitled to have a woman for sex.  I never wanted to make others miserable.  I realize there are some autistic men who stalk women.  I am not one of them and I never defended this.  I certainly never defended Elliot Rodger or Alex Minnasian.

The author of the spectrum article did engage in a bit of sensationalism in my opinion and I suppose it should be no surprise that it elicited a bigoted reaction such as this.

Though autistic men who have a disability that prevents them from having a girlfriend are by no means entitled, I do believe they deserve empathy.  They do not deserve to be stereotyped in a groundless fashion.  I pointed this out in a polite email to the author of the spectrum article and he replied and acknowledged this.

This is a real problem for many autistic men and others with disabilities and people should not use this as fodder for sensationalism and bigotry.

Though my loneliness and celibacy has caused me frustration.  I'd rather have it than be a client of Ms. Gravino.

Another female neurodiversity proponent who has weighed in on this is writer Sara Luterman:

Sara Luterman is someone who has repeatedly published in Spectrum magazine, Washington Post, and many other outlets.  I don't share her view that the article was sympathetic to incels.  Though it was fairly well-balanced, if anything it provided an unflattering portrayal of of autistic men frustrated by celibacy.  The article mentions Adam Lanza and Seung-Hui Cho whose mass shootings had nothing to do with sexual frustration.    I don't believe most autistic men are vulnerable to being turned into incel extremists.  They are mostly likely born that way and don't become Elliot Rodgers or Alex Minnisians vis-a-vis indoctrination.  This is a very insulting statement in my opinion.

One last point to ponder is Luterman's statement virtue-signaling autistic women as opposed to males because the males are the ones who engage in mass shootings.  In the general population of mass shooters, regardless of sexual frustration being the issue or not, it is far more likely  that men will commit a mass shooting than women.  This is likely due to hardwired sex differences in the brain.  So this is an unfair apples to hurricane comparison. 

I can only hope anyone reading this post will be wary of the Amy Gravinos and Sara Lutermans of the world. 


Anonymous said...

Wow. Hit a nerve, did see?
See you a bit to clearly for your liking?
All you are doing is PROVING HER RIGHT.
You ARE who she is talking about.

Anonymous said...

Wow. I can't believe you have the audacity to criticize her. Sounds like you are what she is talking about. You are literally stalking her Twitter, teating apart everything she says. Get a life! Also she never claimed to be a therapist. She is a counselor/aid. So your comment about her being a therapist practising without a license is false information. She is amazing. She has been PERSONALLY INVITED to tons of speaking engagements.. including if I'm not mistaken the UN. She is sought out because of her work and her knowledge.
She is kind hearted and an amazingly sensitive and sweet soul and anyone that can't see that is blind.
It a little obsessive and crazy that you not only stalked her Twitter, but wrote a blog post on her..
That's straight up stalking and you should be lucky she doesn't report you to the police.

jonathan said...

Fine have her report me if she believes I did something illegal. I did not stalk her. I was following a thread on John Robison's feed which she posted on also. Counselor versus therapist is a matter of semantics. She's an unlicensed individual who makes a living giving sex advice who got certified from a diploma mill.

The autism world is occupied by all sorts of vulnerable desperate people and this is the only reason she has been invited as a speaker. If people want to hear her speak and think she has something to offer that is only their opinion. I don't share that opinion and don't believe anyone should have her as a client.

Anonymous said...

Amy is someone that does need to be called out. She is constantly on a high horse in a very non-productive way. She has taken advocacy and turned it more into a victim mentality of “the whole world is against me because I’m autistic.” As someone who has dealt with life long chronic illness and also mental health obstacles, it irks me that she uses whatever platform she places herself on as a means to highlight her victim hood and make outlandish, sexually demeaning comments about men in their 70s.

jonathan said...

Hi Roger,

You're correct, there are autistic men who are like that, but Gravino should not be expressing such contempt for these people she claims she wants to help. It's wrong for her to paint all involuntarily celibate autistic men with a broad brush and it's wrong for them to claim that they use autism as an excuse.

She has a masters degree in applied behavioral analysis and is a certified autism specialist from some unaccredited institution which no one would tolerate for any other condition.

I have no idea why Rutgers would hire her, but I guess it's the nature of the low standards of science and everything else that is applied to autistics. Like why would cambridge university hire simon baron cohen when he says people who want to end autism are the same as nazis and members of the KKK and also was behind that study that tried to show that autistics had super human vision which turned out to be a hoax.

Anonymous said...

Looks like there are a few ND follower loons trolling you on this thread.

Sex is a need just like any other not life dependent but long terms essential need, like feeling wanted, socialisation in NT`s, and meaning. Absence of these things over time have a long term negative effect on health, stress levels and life expectancy. Unfortunately because its sex it comes with its fair share of hypocracy and BS.

Although that's not an excuse for criminal behaviour in some men.

There`s more than just celibacy that makes an Incel anyway.

Looks like she`s just virtue signalling to her feminist friends, "men clear the area please behind the blast zone please!"

Anonymous said...

You are an incel. Incels are haters. You are a hater. Couldn't be simpler. If you say you aren't an incel the first thing you should do is apologize to Amy while getting treatment for your inherent lack of ability to love and appreciate.

Anonymous said...

Dude, read about how "incel" doesn't *only* mean involuntarily celibate these days.

Then, ask yourself if you really want to apply that label to yourself given the people who celebrate "incel" as a terrorist movement. Specifically, making girls and women terrified that if they don't submit to painful sex [see footnote] with an anti-social guy, he will kill them.

Footnote: Scroll down for how painful it can be when a man doesn't care what the woman he's fucking thinks. Tearing, bleeding, etc. even long after the first time. When a woman has difficulty finding a sex partner, even though many random guys would agree to have sex with her, she's having difficulty finding someone she can trust to not hurt her before, during, and after sex.

Anonymous said...

Take a look at

"" “Some people in the femcel and incel communities are like, ‘Oh, I’m so hideous, no one will ever touch me,’” she says. “Well, anybody with a brain knows that’s bullshit. If you’re a woman and you have a vagina, there’s a man somewhere willing to have sex with you. Now, whether his hygiene is up to par, whether he treats you like a person, whether he shames you and abuses you and calls you a ‘disgusting cow’ afterwards and whether you’ll feel worse about yourself than you did before, well, that’s all negotiable. I’m sure any one of us could set up shop behind a dumpster and let the first drugged-out creep cop a feel, and any incel could, too. But who wants that? Who wants to stoop that low?"

Will said...

Most autistic men do not want see let alone a romantic partner. Minassian an Armenian militant (genuine women hater; which is rare) will just blame the "Turks" for his terror attack he did not have autism. Rodger may have had "Asperger's" but I doubt it. Schizoid personality disorder,ADHD or both is what Rodger most likely had. Freaking tired of "autism" overdiagnosis regardless of the who or the why if that over diagnosis

Anonymous said...

I actually envy transgendered people. They get to feel relief when they transition into the gender they feel like. I am autistic and want to be normal but I can't transition into normal.

A.Riverrat said...

Thank you for speaking out on this. As an Autistic woman, although I was diagnosed at 24 (but it was a clinical diagnosis, some stuff in life had happened and my parents suggested a psychologist just to talk.. and then they referred me to this n that etc etc) I am independent and am lucky with who adopted me, but my life has been far more dangerous in cis environments around people who are not Autistic. This is a no brainer. Misogyny is everywhere but to take some bad actors and vilify an entire community is unfair. why are we pegging people in our community as these monsters when one group of trolls or bad actors cannot speak for an entire demographic, it’s just insane. I identify as non-binary, but I am a woman. And this type of Incel hate is nothing but destructive and makes my life as a welder and female navigating this world (while also being Autistic) that much harder. We don’t need any more stereotypes about Autistic men nor do we need more Autistic stereotypes, period. As we also could use without anymore stereotypes about women. Period. Thanks for sharing.

Anonymous said...

One reason for such disagreement over 'incel' is that it is a neologism and will mean something to one person, something else to someone else, and nothing at all to quite a lot of people. Which is a shame as there is a lot to discuss. Alana, who coined the term 'incel' initially, referring not to an ideology but to a predicament, reacted to the Toronto van killings by trying to change attitudes to the root causes of both the alienation and the violence with a new project called 'Love not Anger'. Autism is clearly a common reason for the frustration, but some kind of progress in relationships or acceptance may be possible. Quite a lot of links from 2018 in this forum post:

I'd suggest focussing on the content of what is said about autism and romantic rejection rather than who's saying it. However, I can see why someone who has not themselves faced the extremes of what might be called 'austracism', or whose main knowledge of autism is through ABA, may be less credible. The Spectrum article is good, mentioning some positive initiatives that might lead to more understanding. Maybe they will also counter the common, distorted media image of people (mostly men) hyper-competitively vying for money, status, power and sex, which probably contributes both to the initial alienation and sense of injustice. The Sasson paper also looks good, pointing to countering discrimination and stereotypes in wider society as well as some personal factors like 'clothing choices, grooming habits, gaze patterns, or body posture' that can probably be changed. It took me extra years, but I did have some rewarding relationships with people who are still friends.

Anonymous said...

"as well as some personal factors like 'clothing choices, grooming habits, gaze patterns, or body posture' "

Yeah, people *actively* discouraging younger people from learning attractive personal factors are part of the problem.

Like, they'd rather have you grow up with few friends and no dates because they want you to spend more time studying instead of chatting with friends/settle for the marriage they want to arrange instead of finding a partner yourself/spend more on the media they're selling than on outings with your friends/etc.

Anonymous said...

i honestly never got the "entitled" argument? like what? how am i entitled to wanting a girlfriend, thats something normal that 99% of neurotypical men get at least once in their lives

lol at all the bluepillers attacking you last year for this dude

Tiffany said...

I'm an autistic woman that has been harassed by autistic men that knew their behavior was wrong, and you missed the whole point of Amy Gravino's tweets. I know not all autistic men are bad, but there is a percentage of them that purposely harass women and use their disability as an excuse for it.

Anonymous said...

[not sure if this went through the first time, sorry if it's a duplicate!]

Also see . Parts of that comment from an Autistic woman are:

"...The help I got for this from psychiatrists were crap except for the meds, the meds help alot. I keep being told to join Autism support groups which I do not feel safe in because many parents harassed me to be their son's friend, if I said no they went through my mom who said yes, although she's learned to be less of a people pleaser and would say no now. The thing is most of the parents of Autistic young men who did this were gifted at emotional abuse and manipulation. That's the first reason I don't feel safe at Autism support groups. The second is there are no consequences, everything is explained away as 'They have Autism!' If you complain now you're one of those high functioning people ableist against low functioning people. You're villified for saying no, and especially as a woman to a man because, 'Now you rejected him and hurt his ffffeeelllinnngs, you don't know how hhhaaarrddd having Autism is!'...

"...I'm bringing Autism up because the common excuse for their misbehavior is they are socially awkward. Meanwhile I want support for becoming independent without being told I must join an Autism support group with people who may have violent meltdowns, or can't help touching me or harrassing me to be their girlfriend. I have no idea why this is so hard to get through psychiatrists and therapists thick heads. I am not safe in a room of cognitively impaired men who can't manage their libidos."

About the part about her mom having helped moms of Autistic men try to harass her, she said "I want support for becoming independent" so maybe she still lived with her mom when she made this comment?

elias monarchist said...

virgin loser
society need enforced monogamy
as jordan Peterson said

enforced marriages
without beauty or income criteria
for the common good

a type of fasicst society
without personal liberty in choosing partner

that is the only solution
public executions
of incels
of women who defy social rules
and guys who have wealth and
harem of women

execution for them too
you need enforced equality
by fasicsm by brutal force

you need the destruction
of modern liberal world
by force
like talibans in Afghanistan

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