There is a very strong drive in the care industry to create ‘sensory rooms’ for residents with autism. Those rooms usually contain flashing lights – I personally hate them. Flashing lights can even cause me to have a (silent) meltdown. Mind you, my meltdowns are always silent and my main symptom is that my brain throws abuse at me. ‘You’re useless’ is quite a typical statement that appears in my head at the time.
Since I realise I’m autistic I make an effort to avoid places that display flashing lights, play loud music, force people to socialise and serve overpriced alcoholic drinks. Not that I used to attend there too often before that, but I would go once or twice a year if I got invited somewhere. Now I’d rather stay at home instead.
So no, I would not like flashing lights in my sensory room. But you know what I would like? Some carefully arranged patterns, like on the image below.
I absolutely adore those floor tiles, due to the pattern on them, but mind you, it’s not just tiles, upholstery fabric and blind that counts as pattern. The stools and the table create a pattern of four round objects and so do lamps.
The absence of colours makes me focus on patterns only and looking at this image really calms me down. It feels familiar and safe. I’d really like to have the chance to enter it in real life and spend a couple of minutes there enjoing the experience: just patterns and nothing else.