We are a group of very different people; some autistic, some not, some married, some single, some therapists, some engineers, some systemisers, some empathisers, some were seeking help, some were seeking to give it... but all of us were seeking greater understanding. We all, one way or another, found our way to Peter Flowerdew and Rich Hall and their work in Transactional Analysis.
A serendipitous series of meetings saw our little group bond together over the course of a year or so, as we eagerly absorbed the theories and models that Peter Flowerdew and Aspie co-collaborator Rich Hall generated, and it brought us to the same conclusion: Transactional Analysis (TA) could be adapted to act as a translator between people with Asperger's (Aspies) and the neurotypical (NT) majority (people not on the autistic spectrum). Furthermore, if we put our very diverse heads together, we could show anyone how it worked, fairly quickly and with relative ease.
The effect that this form of TA has had on our lives is profound and it has become important to all of us to make this available to other people, so that they can benefit from it as we have. 'The Different Engine' is not merely an addition to the network of support available to Aspies - this is more akin to a 'Rosetta Stone' for neurodiversity. There is such vast potential in achieving dialogue that can bypass the damaging barriers between NTs and Aspies, for so many people and on so many levels, and we believe that these methods hold the key to unlocking it.
The trustees at the (not quite) inaugural meeting of The Different Engine in August 2017.