zaterdag 26 januari 2008

'Underdiagnosed' Girls With Autism Struggle to Fit In!!!


This is all because the female brain is predisposed, wired towards empathy, and empathy is the urge to co-operate, to form alliances, to please and be accepted (the herding instinct).

Now scientists finally realized that girls who have autism are difficult to diagnose EXACTLY because of these empathic predisposition of the female brain! No kidding!!!! Read on...

Some Researchers Say Girls Can Mask Symptoms of Autism

Eight-year-old Kaede Sakai has autism. "I had a really hard time getting her diagnosed," said her mom, Kristi. (ABC News)

By JOHN DONVAN Jan. 23, 2008

At first glance, 8-year-old Kaede Sakai is a typical first grader. She's a smart student, and most of the time she is kind and cordial in class. But recess is an exercise in frustration for her because no matter how hard she tries to fit in, she just doesn't click with the other kids.

It's heartbreaking to see, especially for her mom.
"[She's] been very sad lately, because a lot of the kids have their play as a set group," said her mother, Kristi Sakai.

There's something about how Kaede approaches play that turns off a lot of kids.

"She's inflexible and has difficulty engaging properly with other peers," said her mom. "She needs them to do things her way, period. And kids aren't able to do that." And while Kaede might appear like nothing more than a little girl having a bad day, it takes someone who has seen a lot of autistic children to recognize that Kaede has autism.

Brenda Myles, one of the lead researchers specializing in the quite narrow field of girls with autism, said autism can be more difficult to detect in girls.

Difficulty of Diagnosis

"Almost all the research is on boys," said Myles. "Well, first of all there are more boys than girls with autism spectrum disorders, but second of all, girls are underdiagnosed."

For a while, the Sakais dealt with the consequences of this narrow field. Kristi Sakai sensed something was wrong when Kaede was very young, but she struggled with a diagnosis. "I had a really hard time getting her diagnosed," she said. "The early intervention people would not recognize the things that I was seeing even though they were identical behaviors as the boys."

The Sakais also have two sons touched by autism. The family lives in a rural area of Oregon, not far from Eugene. It's the kind of place where everybody tends to watch out for everybody else. And in Kaede's family, that's important.

Kaede's brothers, Tom and Kito, have many issues, including an inability to give and take in conversation, and intolerance of various physical stimuli, like certain kinds of clothing. "[Kito] would pull at the feet of his pajamas and scream until we would take them off," said Kristi Sakai.

The boys also have nearly uncontrollable fits of fury that can last for hours and be set off by being given the wrong shirt or because a familiar routine was changed at the last minute. The boys, however, were more easily diagnosed with autism.

The Need to Please

Kaede's autism was harder to detect. She exhibited some of the symptoms her brothers did, but she was able to control others, leading many to believe that she did not have autism. "So she had the sensory issues," said her mom. "That was the first thing I noticed. But she wasn't having the big meltdowns though, which is what other people were saying: 'Well, she doesn't have what the boys have.'"

Kristi Sakai believes that those differences disguised her daughter's symptoms when she took Kaede to be evaluated. "She wanted to please them, so whatever they asked her to do, she would throw her whole heart into it and do what the adults wanted," she said.

It is exactly this desire to please that Myles believes may explain how a girl with autism could fool the experts, so to speak. "We overtly teach social skills to girls," Myles said. "They are told not to get angry, they are told to be nice, they are told to share -- all of those behaviors."

Myles believes these social skills are not as ingrained in boys as they are in girls. "It's more appropriate, if you will, for a boy to have a tantrum and major meltdown than a girl," Myles said. When girls do melt down -- as Kaede does at home -- it's often dismissed as nothing serious, precisely because they are female. "People roll their eyes and say 'drama queen,' even me," said Kristi Sakai.

Some researchers and psychologists believe that symptoms of autism in girls might therefore be more mild, or more easily explained away as something else.

In addition, girls are typically more developed in certain social and conversational skills, further masking possible indications of autism.

According to Shana Nichols, a psychologist at the Fay J. Lindner Center for Autism, a girl's autism might even pass unnoticed if a test for conversational ability is kept short enough.

"You might be able to engage in a back-and-forth conversation with a girl to a greater degree than with the boys," said Nichols. "In a one-to-one, five-minute conversation in passing, they could greet you and answer a couple of questions back and forth. But when you go beyond that, then you begin to see the hole or the gaps in her social understanding."

Girls Being Targeted

Nichols regularly holds an informal support group for teenage girls with autism, meeting with them in Bethpage, New York.
Many of the girls she sits down with can hold a conversation quite well and appear to have a sort of high-functioning autism. But all have stories about being picked on mercilessly because they were odd somehow -- literally disabled when it came to surviving the more sophisticated social complex of teenage female society.

Victoria Roma is a teenager who attends special education classes in New Jersey and intends to become a marine biologist. Roma has superb language skills and is highly motivated, but she has difficulty picking up subtle social skills and therefore struggles to fit in.
"It's a challenge for me to be aware of everything," explained Roma. "Am I flapping? Was that a joke I just heard? Should I be laughing? Should I not be laughing? Should I be serious at this time? Can I be a little silly at this time?"

Brenda Myles, the autism researcher, believes girls with autism might struggle to fit in with their peers even more than boys with autism, because of these missed social cues.
"There's no doubt that girls are being targeted," said Myles. "And because they don't understand those social cues, and in many cases they are not interested in those typical girl behaviors, they don't understand sarcasm, they are often left alone or targeted."

The Sakais don't want Kaede to be targeted or left alone, which is why she is getting lessons on how to make friends with a special education teacher she spends time with at school. While her teacher takes her diagnosis seriously and understands the challenges she faces, not everyone in her regular elementary school does.

"Nightline" recently followed Kaede around school and met a faculty member who was skeptical, suggesting that the children's challenges had to do with the way they were parented. Myles said that kind of reaction is "heartbreaking, and indicates a gross misunderstanding of autism spectrum disorders. And I'm not blaming that indiviudual staff member, but he or she doesn't understand."

Of course, autism is something none of us really understand. Even the determination of whether "girl autism" is different from "boy autism" is an unanswered question. But one that is worth asking.

All I can say is: FINALLY!!!! Scientists are slowly discovering that females are indeed different than males, and this includes AUTISM!!!

Video: Diagnosing Girls' Autism
Video: Autistic Girls Go 'Underdiagnosed'?
Story: News You Can Use: Resources on Autism
Story: Autism Group Launches Web Site Aimed at Forewarning Parents
Story: Researchers Raise Eyebrows With Autism Findings
Story: Kids With Asperger's Syndrome: 'Bullied on a Daily Basis'
Story: Autism: What's in a Number?

zondag 13 januari 2008

Autistics are actually 'aliens.' MRI reveals...

Culture influences brain function, MIT imaging shows

January 11, 2008 -- People from different cultures use their brains differently to solve the same visual perceptual tasks, MIT researchers and colleagues report in the first brain imaging study of its kind.

Psychological research has established that American culture, which values the individual, emphasizes the independence of objects from their contexts, while East Asian societies emphasize the collective and the contextual interdependence of objects. Behavioral studies have shown that these cultural differences can influence memory and even perception. But are they reflected in brain activity patterns?

To find out, a team led by John Gabrieli, a professor at the McGovern Institute for Brain Research at MIT, asked 10 East Asians recently arrived in the United States and 10 Americans to make quick perceptual judgments while in a functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) scanner--a technology that maps blood flow changes in the brain that correspond to mental operations.

Brain activity in East Asians and Americans as they make relative and absolute judgments. The arrows point to brain regions involved in attention that are engaged by more demanding tasks. Americans show more activity during relative judgments than absolute judgments, presumably because the former task is less familiar and hence more demanding for them. East Asians show the opposite pattern.

John Gabrieli, the Grover Herman Professor of Health Sciences and Technology and Brain and Cognitive Sciences, left, and McGovern Institute research scientist Trey Hedden display the results from their recent psychological study.

The results are reported in the January issue of Psychological Science. Gabrieli's colleagues on the work were Trey Hedden, lead author of the paper and a research scientist at McGovern; Sarah Ketay and Arthur Aron of State University of New York at Stony Brook; and Hazel Rose Markus of Stanford University.

Subjects were shown a sequence of stimuli consisting of lines within squares and were asked to compare each stimulus with the previous one. In some trials, they judged whether the lines were the same length regardless of the surrounding squares (an absolute judgment of individual objects independent of context). In other trials, they decided whether the lines were in the same proportion to the squares, regardless of absolute size (a relative judgment of interdependent objects).

In previous behavioral studies of similar tasks, Americans were more accurate on absolute judgments, and East Asians on relative judgments. In the current study, the tasks were easy enough that there were no differences in performance between the two groups.

However, the two groups showed different patterns of brain activation when performing these tasks. Americans, when making relative judgments that are typically harder for them, activated brain regions involved in attention-demanding mental tasks. They showed much less activation of these regions when making the more culturally familiar absolute judgments. East Asians showed the opposite tendency, engaging the brain's attention system more for absolute judgments than for relative judgments.

"We were surprised at the magnitude of the difference between the two cultural groups, and also at how widespread the engagement of the brain's attention system became when making judgments outside the cultural comfort zone," says Hedden.

The researchers went on to show that the effect was greater in those individuals who identified more closely with their culture. They used questionnaires of preferences and values in social relations, such as whether an individual is responsible for the failure of a family member, to gauge cultural identification. Within both groups, stronger identification with their respective cultures was associated with a stronger culture-specific pattern of brain-activation.

How do these differences come about?

"Everyone uses the same attention machinery for more difficult cognitive tasks, but they are trained to use it in different ways, and it's the culture that does the training," Gabrieli says. "It's fascinating that the way in which the brain responds to these simple drawings reflects, in a predictable way, how the individual thinks about independent or interdependent social relationships."

Gabrieli is the Grover Herman Professor of Health Sciences and Technology and Brain and Cognitive Sciences, and holds an appointment at the Harvard-MIT Division of Health Sciences and Technology. This study was funded by the National Institutes of Health and supported by the McGovern Institute.

My comments:

How does this reflect on Autism and the autistic behavior, you may ask. Well, let me tell you a secret about autism. An autistic person, unlike the connotation of the word autism that points to the wrong direction by using the Greek word auto meaning self, and the notion that autism is a developmental disorder that causes the person to close themselves inside their own self, is an extremely social individual. The place to see and understand this somewhat oximoron as it seems to the neurotypical mind about autism and socialization, is Aspergia.

Autistics (and Aspergers) need others so much, we crave so much to connect with others, that we have unbelievable enough a very highly developed sense of the collective, so highly developed that when we don't receive the means to connect as we so much want and need, we turn against this internal need, and reject it, exclude it from our lives and become loners.

Autism is the result of a malfunction of the connection of the individual to the group, the collective. This malfunction begins with the bonding with the mother. Fraud once said that and mentioned the term 'Frigid Mothers' but even though his train of thought was pointing to the right direction, the term he used was very, very wrong!

What Freud did not understand was the way the female brain operates, and assumed that the the only purpose that a female has is to produce babies and care for them: the stereotype of the perfect Mother. The kind of perfect mother that religion portrays in the form of Maria and the baby Jesus in her arms.

What Freud did not understand is that the female brain is far more complex than that. And the role of the mother is only one aspect of its abilities, needs, and ambitions. If the female brain is not allowed to develop and embrace all of its capabilities, it also malfunctions, and it becomes unable to produce the 'perfect mother' that a child needs.

Society has in many ways contributed to this malfunction. In the 50s for example women were 'locked' up in marginal lives in suburbian-white-picket-fenced houses, isolated, unappreciated and very bored!

Such women had only two choices: to embrace this forced-upon-them lives, or reject them. Accepting made them good wives and mothers, rejecting them and becoming depressed made them bad wives and probably frigid mothers.

Now back to the bonding issue. If the person with 'autism' does not succeed to experience the pleasure of bonding, or if something happens that shatters that pleasure, or distorts the paths towards that pleasure, or receives negative experiences such as pain and fear from the act of bonding with another individual and primarily the mother, then secondarily the father, this person will exhibit an even more pronounced degree of autism.

This is because the negative experiences had a grave influence upon the way the person perceives the need to bond with others and the need to be part of a collective. I once said that an autistic person has a very strong instinct of the pack and that he/she will accept a top dog, if the top dog proves to be a good leader and offers all the talents a good leader has: a strong sense of direction, a strong sense of bonding with the pack, a strong sense of protecting the pack even with his/her own life, a strong sense of belonging to the pack and a strong sense of knowing that if he/she does not succeed to fulfill all of these prerequisites, someone else from the pack will claim her/his leadership and become the top dog.

Autism, and the autistic behavior is the reflexion of the circumstances that caused the individual to either be rejected from the collective or to reject the collective. Autism is the mirror of how society, how the family, how the mother and then the father, teach and guide the individual towards integration and accumulation within the group, the collective.

Autism is the exposure of all the malfunctions that have now surfaced, and have become visible.

Freud was a genius. He saw this coming but he worded it in a way that caused a lot of people to disagree with him, people that were very short-sighted, because what Freud had once foretold science is slowly discovering now.

I am also aware that many of the things that I write here will be seen under the same 'ignorant' eye and will be thought as the senseless rantings of an autistic mind. That is fine with me. The future holds my justification, and I know that I am right.

zaterdag 12 januari 2008

The Autistic Brain

There is so much I am half aware about my past. So many things and events whose details elude me because they seem like a memory that forms a picture with many pieces missing, like a puzzle unfinished but with the puzzle box picture gone and lost. I somehow feel I will never know what the real picture ever was, but always see the fragments that are still there.

A child's memory has so much to hold and work through and accumulate. A normal child's mind has a lot as it is, without even trying to imagine how it is for an autistic child's mind. That is why autistic children avoid so much. Their mind can accumulate an X amount of information and then it gets overloaded.

Now here is the question, what if there is a threshold?

What if there is a threshold of pain, of discomfort, of unpleasantness, when the mind becomes indeed overloaded, but like the human body once it reaches this threshold of physical stress, the brain reacts by going into a different mode: the super-power mode.

When we are physically active, in the gym for example, we know that there is no gain, without pain. We all think 'NO pain, NO gain' when we go over the pain threshold to gain a well-trained body. Once we go over the threshold of pain and physical overload, the body goes into a new 'level' also known as the adrenaline level where the adrenaline and testosterone fill the muscles, giving the body an almost super-power ability. This ability enhances the endurance of pain and cold, the ability of speed, agility and strength.

What if the brain has a similar threshold?

Let's think about it for a moment. Actually, we already know that the brain does have a similar threshold. Studying for an exam, or even better taking the exam, shows the same 'NO pain, NO gain' policy.

Why should it be different for the autistic children?

Well, first of all one might say, because they are autistic. And THAT is bad enough!

Really??? Why is it bad enough?

Because they have all these problems! All these disabilities, disadvantages, abnormalities, dysfunctions, damages in their brain.

And you assume that because they are not exactly like you, correct? And you are convinced you are able, advantaged, normal, functional, and have no damage in your brain what-so-ever? Hmmm...

Well, what if your brain is unable to understand theirs because theirs is a completely different model. Something like Windows XP not being compatible with Windows 3.1, for example.
No, don't get me wrong. The Windows XP can't be understood by the Windows 3.1, the 3.1 can be perfectly understood by the XP. Only, your brain is the Windows 3.1 version.

Your brain works with MS-DOS you need verbal commands because your communication is set in words, sentences, typed or verbal commands. The Windows XP brain works with pictures, pictograms, images. This is the enhanced autistic brain.

All you need to do is 'click' on an image to activate and manipulate it. Words are becoming redundant. No one uses verbal communication around XP, no one needs to tell the computer what to do, you just activate a picture by 'clicking' on it. This method of communication with a computer is much more efficient and faster.

An autistic kid's brain also works faster exactly BECAUSE of that difference. Thinking in pictures, is a much faster way of thought processing. We know that because we know that the human brain-even the normal children's and adult's brain, for that matter-processes our daily lives, the daily experiences and all the input from these experiences through dreams. Dreams, and dreaming is nothing more that the fastest possible way for the brain to go through all the data, analyze it, classify it and store for later use and for further expansion.

What if the enhanced human brain has adapted this mode of operation, the dream or R.E.M. state to process experiences in BOTH the awake and the asleep periods of the human life? What if what Temple Grandin calls 'thinking in pictures' is nothing more that the enhanced model of operation of the human brain?

Articles that I have added here through links show that:

A. the autistic brain has more gray matter than white matter in the areas where thought process takes place.
B. that the autistic brain grows faster that the neurotypical children's brain
C. the autistic child's thought process and behavior is different than that of the neurotypical children.

The autistic child thus needs a specific way of 'operating' through educating and developing its advanced mind. If this specific way is not used the child will start malfunctioning, creating self-generated stimulation to escape the boredom it feels, because if a brain that is build to absorb, and accumulate more information faster does not get to fulfill its ability, this brain gets bored and begins to create means to fill in the shortage of stimulus and experiences.

This is not something unknown to science. When a person has a limb amputated, will often complain that it feels like there is a phantom limb there. This is because the area of the brain that was accustomed to receive stimulus from that limb was now facing a 'silence' a non-stimulus state. But the area of the brain is still functional even if the limb that produced the stimulus is gone. The brain then creates self-generated stimulus that a 'feels' like a phantom limb. This also happens with people who are blinded or loose their hearing. They continue to see flashes of light, colors and shapes or hear sounds of voices for a long time after their brain stops receiving stimuli from their eyes or ears.

In the same fashion, when the enhanced brain that has vast areas that are ready and functional to accumulate stimulus, does not receives it becomes bored, it becomes 'autistic' it goes into auto-stimulation through hyperactivity, through stims, through obsessions, through day-dreaming, through sleep, through anyway it can. In the beginning, when the child is young, this situation of self-generated stimulus is the greatest because the brain is at its peak capacity and ready for learning. By NOT receiving the adequate AMOUNT of stimulus it feels almost like what someone goes through when they try to withdraw from nicotine, or alcohol, or any substance.

The reason is that the brain is in a state of high alert, as if it's in a super-power mode of adrenaline and testosterone, ready to run in full capacity and LEARN! But then the learning comes in as drops, in insufficient amounts, in an inappropriate format, in an inappropriate time frame, and so on the brain does not fulfill its needs.

The autistic brain is set in the autistic learning mode. It is not accidental that many parents of autistic kids choose home schooling. They have realized this very significant difference between neurotypical kids and their own. They see that their kids learn in a different way, that they need to be also TAUGHT in a different way, so that the information, the stimulus they receive is adjusted and is sufficient to their autistic brain needs and bandwidth!

If the autistic brain thinks in pictures, then maybe it also learns better through pictures, through images, through moving pictures, through animated pictures. After all they do say that a picture is a thousand words.

To me as an autistic person this significant difference is so obvious that I constantly wonder how it is possible that so many scientists have not realized this as well.

Then when I think about it the answer to this question is also very obvious and clear. They are after the money. You see if these scientists would tell the millions of parents with autistic kids:
"Hey, your kid is fine, it's you and me who are not, because we are too stupid to even comprehend the abilities of your kid's brain and we have no idea how to teach your kid's brain so that it reaches and fulfills its potential."

Do you think that the parents would turn around and say:
"Gee doc! That advice you just gave us is excellent! Here is your fee of $12,000 for curring our little Sandy from her autistic behavior! We really don't know how to thank you, you are worth every penny!!!"

Yeah! THAT would be the day...

But, back to memories, learning, language, and images as a means of communication and upload of data.

The human brain is built to understand images very well. Our brain has set apart the largest area as the data collection and analysis center that comes in from our eyes. This area is the visual cortex. It is huge compared with the areas allocated to the other senses, with only exclusion that of touch as it is spread throughout the entire body and skin surface.

Maybe this detail can explain why autistics are so sensitive and peculiar when it comes to touch. More on this on a later stage.

The world around us is observed primarily using our eyes and then with the rest of our senses. This means that many of the final memories we store have a big visual component. Vision also offered a path to communication. Pointing to something was a way to clearly show what it was we wanted. It is not accidental that the first attempts of communication, and data sharing were images, painting, as primitive and crude as they were, on the walls of caves.

The images painted were a sort of narration, a story, a 'written' evidence of human existence and life. Our ancestors painted their experiences to share them with each other and with future generations much like we do today using blogs and posting them on the world wide web.

It is also not accidental that the Egyptians, who used images to communicate by creating letters that were symbols and had a picture of what it was they wanted pronounced so that the sound of the name of that item was then used as a letter to form new worlds and even abstract meanings, like the name of a Pharaoh. The connection here between image and language is very strong and that is why the Hieroglyphics have generated such sensation when they were deciphered and read.

It is an amazing language that used both the concrete, the visual, the object itself as a pictogram, and the abstract, the sound that this object generated, and combined the two to form a means of communication that bridged the two: the physical world that was concrete and observed through the eyes, and the abstract ability of the human brain to generate thoughts that were beyond the concrete and the physical world. An ability that animals do not have and that is why we have developed language and they have not.

I will make a parenthesis and say that many animal species have developed forms of communication, but it is communication that evolves around concrete kind of messages: where is food and how to get to it, where is danger and how to avoid it, what female is receptive and ready to mate, which male is more potent and offers a good quality genes, necessary to the evolution of the species. But no other species other than human beings has yet manage to say "I love you" or "I believe in God."

Animals communicate also by behaving in a friendly way towards other animals to form alianses but they do not have a specific behavior or sound or sign that will transmit the abstract message of love, or being in love, or loving one's family and children.

We do. Human beings can both grasp and communicate abstract meanings because our brains are able to dream. Animals dream, too, but we humans can remember our dreams, are conscious that they were a dream and not something that happened in an awake state, and we can also use the fact that we dream to explain things that are connected to the non-dream state. We are aware that there are two states of being. And we need a form of communication that also has the means to talk about, describe, analyze and transmit, both these states in our communication.

Words and the formation of words was a means of communication that proved to be solid and flexible enough for the above mentioned needs. That was something like MS-DOS and communicating with a computer. It was solid and flexible enough and achieved the desired result. But it had one drawback: it was SLOW!

Windows opened a need chapter using images that gave a much faster means of communication. And Windows XP with its upgraded and enhanced abilities offered and even greater speed of communication.

The autistic brain has this enhanced ability of speed learning. The main question now is, how do we feed the autistic child's brain the information it needs in a way that is compatible with its enhanced ability to decipher and process images that hold a vast amount of information. Far, far more than a single word can.

It like comparing MB with GB!

woensdag 2 januari 2008

The Other Side

When one hears "the other side," we all tend to think of the Moon. The other side of the Moon is probably the most well-known other side that there is.

Let's take a moment to ponder on that. We never speak of the other side of Earth, we say down under or northern and southern hemispheres, not the other side because we can't determine which the other side can be as we live on this round world that constantly turns, not only around itself but also around the Sun. That is why we also never say the “other side of the Sun.”

We go around it once every year and the Sun looks the same all around. There doesn't seem to be an other side as far as the Sun is concerned. So, when human beings looked up in the night sky and saw the ‘night sun’, the Moon bright as silver, compared to the gold of the sun-light, human beings at first assumed that the Moon like the Sun was the same all around. Then they realized that the Moon changes, becomes smaller changes shape, almost disappears completely in the Earth's shadow and then in appears again and begins growing.

If you think about it, the Moon when seen from the Earth looks very much like the pregnant belly of the female.

The womb, tiny almost invisible with a size that fits a pin head, can swell and grow as big as the full Moon in the late summer, early autumn sky, the time that the sawing of the fields of wheat could continue all through the night under the light of the Moon. The pregnancy of the Moon was associated with the fruit that the Earth gave to the human beings.

Fertility was associated with the female. The swollen, pregnant female body was the symbol of fertility. Many early religions acknowledged this by creating statues of goddesses with such round bodies. The big round body is the body of fertility, of plenty, of an easier time compared to the winter when food was scarce.

This also meant that if the Moon was seen as the symbol of the female, the counterpart to the Moon, the Sun thus became the symbol of the male. Like the Sun, the male does not have an other side. Like the Sun, which is exposed from all sides as we travel in an ellipse around it, the male genitals are also exposed. These do not have an other side.

An erect penis is as visible from all sides as the Sun is. The Moon though does have two sides. The visible side, the Full Moon, the female body in full glory, and an invisible side, as it appears in a Moon-less sky, eluding us making us think she has left us, abandoned us to like in the total darkness of the night. Without the Moon, the already hostile night, would become even more terrifying in total darkness.

Our fear of the dark is the fear that roots in the absence of the Female Goddess, the Mother represented by the (pregnant) Moon.

The female genitals also have an other side. Some of them are visible, while the rest are hidden inside the female body. They can only be 'seen'-as they are never really seen by being openly exposed, but 'seen' as making their presence known, when in action during pregnancy. Then one day the hidden organs make their debut performance by producing another human being.

Now if we think about it, while inside the womb, we lived in the other side. The body of the Mother constantly announced our presence through its shape, but we were unaware of that because we were inside, in the other side, in the dark. Not completely dark, because light seeped through just a bit to soften the darkness, like the Moonlight softens the dark night.

The presence of the Mother was all around us, we heard her heartbeat, we heard her voice, we felt her move, we were aware of her presence around and inside our being through her blood that fed us, and through our skin, and all our developing senses. She was everything there was. We existed inside her as ONE with her. So much as ONE, that we were actually an integrated part of her body. We had to be. If we were not a part of her body, her body would reject us, like it does with every foreign object.

The survival of the human body depends on this very clear rule. Foreign objects that enter the body will be attacked, killed and rejected. Yet, there is something that the human body does not want to neither reject, nor kill: the fertilized egg and then the growing fetus.

The ingenuity of the female body is truly a marvel.

It can trick its own self. The female body wants to both have and keep the fertilized egg, and allow the defense system to keep its optimum protection. To achieve both, the female body wraps the fertilized egg in a cloak that makes it invisible to the white blood cells that patrol everywhere searching for intruders.

To create a fetus, the female human body, makes an ovum, an egg, which is made of the same 'fabric' as the female body is. This egg is like a soap bubble. You can pierce it and enter it, yet it stays shielded. This last detail is important, because soon this bubble will have an extra tenant. It begins with a visit, from a swimming sperm, propelled by the power center of the sperm tail, the male mitochondria it collides with the egg and desperately seeks a way to get inside.

Like the soap bubble, when the sperm succeeds to enter, the outside of the egg shields hermetically. The arrival of the sperm and its occupancy inside the egg must be kept a secret or the body will lounge an attack against the sperm as it is a foreign object.

When the fertilized egg becomes a fetus the cloak is no more necessary. The fetus has the same mitochondria as the Mother's body and this tells the white blood cells that it belongs to the body, and it's not foreign. We exist for the length of the pregnancy in a state of absolute Oneness with our Mother. The same kind of Oneness that our soul or spirit lived with our Devine Parent, our God, Allah, Jehovah. The whole universe lived as a fetus inside the God Mother/Father Parent until it was born and existed.

Inside the Mother's body, we are invisible, yet visible through the protruding belly, we are part of the Female, and we are hidden like her genital organs. Once we are born, we enter the realm of the visible, the male, we are exposed like the male genital organs.

This is also how we have come to associate the Sun, the light, the day with visible, the male, the strong, the righteous, the good... And this is also how we came to associate the Moon, the absence of daylight, the absence of day, the absence of the visible, the absence of the male, the absence of the good...

We called the absence of the good bad, evil, wrong, weak, lesser. The female was robbed from her righteousness, her divinity, her power and her place in the order of the world. We human beings have been very rude to our Mother, who allowed us to exist inside her body, fed us and protected us, kept us safe even by tricking her own body. And this is how we, her children thank her. We make her into a witch, a spinster, a bitch.

We give her the name of the whore when she acknowledges her sexual urges and needs, we call her a devoted wife and mother when she sacrifices her own dreams and aspirations, ambitions, to serve her husband, the male, and support his dreams and aspirations and ambitions. He is visible. He goes out in society and becomes an integrated part, like a fetus inside the womb. But once he occupies that place, where is then place for the female to be?

She is made to choose.

Either spend her life trying to find a womb, a place in society like a man would and face all the discrimination, the lesser pay, the sexual harassment, the constant reminder that she is in the wrong ball game, or accept the only option still open and without a 'tenant': the home, her own self made womb, that she can get to decorate, clean, keep, and share with her husband, the male.

He does not seem willing to share the womb of society he is occupying with her. But, she is obliged to share hers with him, and the children. The choices a woman is offered are the ones a male does NOT want.

So it seems.

But let’s think for a moment. He does NOT want or is it canNOT have?

A man cannot get pregnant. He can't choose to have a baby, to be a Mother. He only has one choice after he grows up and is no more allowed to seek safety and comfort at the Mother. No more inside her womb, no more inside her arms as a baby, no more on her lap as a child. He can only seek safety and comfort by replacing the Mother's embrace with that of society.

He seeks there a source of nourishment. In the form of an income, a career, a place where he can 'grow' financially, in power, in size and ability. The male wants to have his genes implanted in the next generation. That is why he exists for in the first place. He exists because like the Sun produces constant bursts of energy, the male produces millions of sperms.

They urge him to plant them inside wombs. The male has the need to find a mother for his seed. The woman has a choice. She can accept or deny. This is why the Moon has an other side. The accepting Moon is the pregnant Moon, the Full Moon. The other is the Moon that rejects the Sun light as a female rejected the male sperm, the Dark Moon.

The dark is associated with rejection, an unpleasant feeling. A mixed message. The dark is the nourishing womb that allowed us to grow, and the dark is the painful rejection. This is how the female feels to the male. On one side, the female seems to hold the memory of his Mother, while on the other; she is the target of his need to procreate.

To the female, the male is more obvious. There is no other side of the Sun and no other side of the male. What a male is is obvious. His erect, ejaculating organ, is celebrated in ceremonies in Japan, was given almost godly status in Ancient Greece, and Viagra has come to prolong the image of procreating Utopia.

The male is made to parade his vitality, his strength, his potency. These are obvious signs that his genes are also potent. He wants to make the females choose him to mate with. He grows elaborate horns, tasks, manes, and feathers, to shout from the hills the quality of his genes.

Almost like the sellers in a market males advertise their products: take mine, chose mine, I have the best. It is all about the quality of genes because they are mighty valuable in the game of Life, which is called Evolution.

This means that a female must be equipped with another unique ability. She must be able to see, note and understand how to tell one male from the other. In their display of potency, a female must be able to recognize the small differences in size, ability, color, length, ingenuity. The female mind must be able to see these details and decode them.

Who is the best father for my offspring?

This is where, surprisingly, in many species suddenly the other side of the male-that was thought non-existent-appears. If the ‘father’ shows signs of tenderness and caring devotion towards the female, this tells the female that he is capable of showing the same qualities when it comes to her children.

Many think that women like strong aggressive men, yet surprisingly enough, it is the sweet shy guys that win many hearts. How is that possible, aggressive men wonder. We pump our muscles, we bully each other, we make wars and display our aggressive nature in all possible ways and the girls fall for the shy nerdy types!

It is simple gentlemen. If you are too aggressive, the female senses that you will treat with the same aggressiveness her children, and that means that you might harm them. Her instinct tells her that you are not a potential good father. This is not the past, when physical strength was a key to survival and aggressive behavior meant the difference between keeping the tribe safe and being taken slaves.

Today, in our modern world, aggressiveness is not a quality that wins the female hearts. The quiet shy guys, who were gentle and loving, took over. These were the generations of Aspies before anyone even knew what Autism was. They were the hippies that shouted "make love not war" in the 60s and 70s. Today we see the results. An epidemic as they call it of autistic offspring, and scientists wonder where all these kids came from.

Hmmm, look again gentlemen, look again!