Re-thinking things through an Autistic filter

Since being diagnosed with autism in my mid-30s, I’ve been re-thinking a lot of things.

I’ve spent a lifetime of trying to appear to be the same as everyone else. I’ve been watching. I’ve been studying. Every book, article, overheard conversation, brings me that little bit closer to passing for normal.

I’ve spent a long time thinking about who I ought to be.

And I thought you were all doing it too. Maybe not everyone. Maybe a few of you were in on the secret, but I assumed, as we all do, that the way I see the world is the way everyone does.

Now I know that when I don’t understand you, it’s not that I’ve missed out the rules of the game, it’s that you’re playing Monopoly whilst I’m playing Rugby Union.

It’s not that I’m coming at it from the wrong angle, it’s that I don’t have the… Whatever-it-is to understand you. I don’t get it. I can’t.

And that’s ok.

That’s what I’m coming to terms with. It’s ok. It’s ok that I don’t want to make small talk, and it’s ok that you do. There will be times when I will. I hope there will be times when you won’t.

I’ve been working on analogies. I like analogies. They’re pictures that you can lay over life to try to make sense of it.

Since finding out who I am, I have been struck by several things:-

When you try to describe what being Autistic is, everyone says, “Well I do that too.”

People say this because it’s hard to describe being autistic. Often you end up clutching a collection of behaviours, such as social exhaustion, hating the phone, wiggling your feet.

And other people say, “I don’t like using phones either, and I wiggle my feet, and I’m shattered after a night out, maybe I’m a bit spectrumy!”

So you look at them and something inside dies a little, because you’ve not communicated what you wanted to, and you really don’t want to have to tell them about the time when you were walking down the corridor, and suddenly there was too much noise from all the people, and your head started spinning, and the lights were wrong, and the space was wrong and everything started shutting down on you. Because that behaviour makes you vulnerable.

So you smile (because that’s what people do), and you try to stop the conversation, because now you’re upset at yourself, and you can’t maintain eye contact well when you’re upset.

(I say eye-contact! I mean it’s hard to even look at people’s noses, or anywhere near their faces, when it gets too much)

It’s ok. It’s ok that I cocked up because I focused on the behaviours and not the causes. It’s hard. It’s complicated.

How do you explain to someone what it’s like to not have something that you don’t even know exists?

It’s like trying to describe silence to someone who has always lived their life beneath a roaring waterfall. They won’t hear the water. They’ll take it for granted. They’ll say, “This is silence.”

How do I describe a lack of social processing to someone who doesn’t know they do it?

How do I describe how much active processing I put in to everyday tasks, which they can happily do on automatic without noticing?

Did you know that when asked a complicated question, most people will look away from the questioners face, because it frees up processing power? Processing that they don’t even know happens. They will be studying expression in great detail, without knowing it. It’s like having a computer that just provides the answers.

My computer tells me what it sees. It gives me a literal view of the face and its changes. I can use these to compare to what I have learned. I can use my stored knowledge to try to work out what you are thinking, what I should do, what it is you need from me.

But my computer doesn’t give me the answers. Mine gives me problems to solve.

When you’ve spent a lifetime pretending to be normal, you shouldn’t be surprised that people think you’re not autistic.

People have told me how normal I am. How they don’t see any part of me that is different. I think I should assume this is a compliment. I’m sure it’s meant as one.

To me it’s a mirror showing just how much effort I have put in to being someone socially acceptable. Each aspect of me that is deemed “presentable” is an effort. It’s a sort of me. It’s a kind of me.

But it ought not to be.

Oh dear lord the self doubt. I never thought I could accuse myself of not being who I deep-down know I am, in so many inventive and insidious ways.

Post-diagnosis has been a roller-coaster of elation and depression and acceptance and reluctance and “oh god I get to be me forever?!” (Said sometimes joyously and sometimes in pain).

I am autistic.

I am an autistic woman.

I am an autistic mother, person, wife, daughter and so on and on and on.

I am Aspie. For some reason I’ve taken against using Asperger’s to describe myself, even though it’s accurate, I think for some reason it feels euphemistic.

I don’t like euphemisms.

I don’t want a sanitised, socially acceptable me anymore. I want to be the me that I am. The me that I have always been.

Because I am socially acceptable. I might be a bit peculiar if I let it all hang out, I might seem a bit less self-assured and a bit more terrified, but that’s ok, isn’t it? Other people get to break those rules? I may not be good at breaking rules, but maybe I can add new ones, a few sub-clauses here and there.

It’s what I’m striving for. Being a bit more me. Now is the time.

So today I didn’t hide my hand in my pocket when I needed to stim. It’s the little things.

Tomorrow I will contemplate world domination.

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222 thoughts on “Re-thinking things through an Autistic filter

  1. I am so glad to have read this. My son, one daughter and my husband are autistic. This post was excellent. I know the patience and understanding it takes for me to cheer them on, to understand (as best I can) to love them and give them all the opportunities I can. It’s very difficult at times but wonderful in so many other ways. Thak you for sharing.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. THANKS for the post. My son suffers from something similar and I always feel like an outsider… I don’t get it… as hard as I try… and what makes this so frustrating is that because of this I often don’t get him… (I love him dearly… just never know what to say… how to help… what he needs)… It was nice to read someone that articulated so well… explaining what you are going through… I don’t know how well it maps to his experience but I did take one thing away. When trying to talk to him (especially when something bad had happened) I noticed he wouldn’t look at me… (thought he was ignoring me… or being defiant) I would tell him to look at me and wait until he did… I will be more careful about this now..

    Liked by 2 people

    1. That’s great that you were able to get something from it. I know having the diagnosis really helped my husband understand why I wouldn’t want a hug if I was upset. It wasn’t him, it was me needing my own space.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Thank you for sharing this with us. My nephew is autistic. Thanks to his Mother’s diligence and not taking the doctor’s word for it (whom would have placed him into a home), he graduated from High School, has a full time job, and has received the proper medical care he needed. His Mother taught him sign language, as he could not talk, so he can communicate. Autism is a deeply villified, judged, and misunderstood diagnosis. All too often when people hear “Autism” they feel awkward and do not know what to say or do. I have shared this blog with my sister-in-law, her son lives with her, in the hopes that she too will draw encouragement from your well written article. Please keep sharing, I am deeply grateful to connect with you. Stay beautiful inside and out. Razzi of Spirit Blossoms Pychics

    Liked by 1 person

    1. “Autism is a deeply villified, judged, and misunderstood diagnosis.”
      Unfortunately, this is all too true. As I previously stated, I worked with individuals with Autism, and it was my job to find them gainful employment. It is insanely difficult to do, because people are so afraid of what could happen (negative behaviors), they don’t really think about what could happen (an employee who is loyal to a fault). I dealt with it a million times, and I argued my case a million times. Ultimately, I was able to procure my individuals jobs – both volunteer and paid. The people who we worked with at the locations tried to be as supportive as they could, but it was difficult when there was an undercurrent of fear; but as their staff, it was my job to ensure they did their jobs to the best of their ability and they never let me down. They would have difficulties: counting exactly 10 to put in a baggie (not 9 or 11, just 10), but that’s part of staffing — making sure they’re doing it right. The problem is, not all staff are created the same. I was not better or worse than any other staff member, but I knew the strengths and weaknesses of my individuals, and I allowed them some free reign to pick and chose which assignments on the job-site they wanted to do, then monitored them to ensure that they were doing what they were supposed to do. Other staff were more inclined to make all three do the same task at the same time, despite the non-verbal protestations of some of the group. As a result, the noise level, and the general problems that arise when someone is not happy and unable to tell you became overwhelming. So on the days, or weeks, where I knew I would not be able to take my individuals to the job sites, I would call and inform the managers of the locations that we would not be able to attend, which they always accepted graciously. In the end, I was out sick for a few days, and my new manager decided to send my individuals to their job-sites despite my cancelling them. The staff member that took them was an awesome staff member, but she didn’t really know my individuals, as I was the one the worked with them daily. When I returned, I was informed that we lost 3 of the 5 jobs that my individuals were working for the last three years. I was furious, and I tried to make calls to the jobs for answers. The noise, the stealing of pens, the one with verbal skills talking non-stop instead of working… it all contributed to the loss of the job sites, and it was decided that the employment status would be terminated. I was crushed. So were my individuals. They wanted to go to their job-sites, but I had to explain that we couldn’t, and that we had another job to go to (they could mow the lawn around the building). They were disappointed, one cried, and the other didn’t acknowledge me for the rest of the day because they thought it was my fault. The verbal one went so far as to tell me it was DEFINITELY my fault, because if I hadn’t gotten sick, they wouldn’t have gone with the other staff and wouldn’t have lost the job. GUILT TRIP!
      I eventually procured another job site for my individuals, and on the day they were supposed to begin, my manager decided another staff member should go to the job-site with them. Despite that staff member stating very clearly that they did NOT want to work with my individuals (they were truly a handful), and my explaining that I know my individuals and that I could teach them the job with little to no issues, my manager insisted. She said it was better if we could all work with each other’s individuals rather than with our usual group. We all agreed with that — but we all disagreed with doing it at a job location that was not owned and operated by our company. She refused to change the schedule. They went to their job site, I took the other individual to his assigned job site. The individual I had was a biter… I did not know this, as I was not informed and it wasn’t in his paperwork. He generally only would bite someone if he was asked to do something he didn’t want to do. He was verbal, but instead of saying no, he would just bite. I got bit. I was not pleased. And the staff with my individuals was able to spend about 10 minutes on site, and then was asked to leave with the individuals in tow. Two job-sites down in one day.
      When I started that job, the manager did everything he could to ensure the safety and sanity of the staff, within reason. Our program had 15 jobs and 20 individuals. We maintained that number for 3 years with few incidents or job changes. But it was always 15 job sites and 20 individuals. That manager left, and our director brought in another manager that wasn’t from within our program, and that manager didn’t accept the fact that the previous manager picked the groups based on who worked best with whom. She continually switched it all around. When I left, we had 20 individuals, and 2 job locations – both owned by the company and staffed by the company. There was also an increase in behaviors due to the fact that she would not listen to staff about who could not be in the van with whom. My last month there, I spent doing hours of paperwork because of the behaviors, and spent hours on the phone with the parents of the individuals I generally staffed trying to explain what went on while another staff was working with them. (although we didn’t work with them because of her scheduling, we were still responsible for making the weekly calls to the parents).

      OK, I think I got diverted somewhere LOL

      My point is this: if you know the individual, or have someone that works with them and brings out the best in them, don’t change it if you can help it. Individuals with Autism respond well to things that are familiar, schedules, and repetition. When you change it, it can go badly. I think that is why Autism is “deeply villified, judged, and misunderstood.” Unfortunately, people generally see those with Autism on a bad day, and as a result generalize and think that everyone with Autism is the same way. They’re not. Autistic individuals are as varied and colorful as non-Autistic people; they just have more difficulty expressing it. And as I always used to tell people when my one individual used to start screaming at the job sites, “You’ve never had a bad day where you just wanted to scream? That’s what he’s doing. He’ll calm down in a second.”

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Thank you very much for sharing this. We have autism, too, and were diagnosed earlier than you, but late enough for it to cause difficulties for us. We found the whole process very, very exhausting. It’s so difficult to explain to people without autism what autism is like; how it effects us; how it impacts things and factors that they don’t even appreciate merit recognition. We think you did a wonderful job, and will be sharing this with our non-autistic family members. We hope that’s okay. Good luck with being you! We send you our best wishes, too, and continue to stim with our hands outside of our pockets. Perhaps one day it will become a small salute, a token of understanding, or at least sympathy.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Thank you for a wonderful post that helps explain perspective from the other side, my son has autism and the hardest thing I see every day is how hard it is for him to understand social rules that don’t make a lot of sense to him, while desperately trying to fit in.I really want him to feel happy being himself and know it’s ok to stand out and shine. I’m sure he will learn that in time though, hearing stories like this helps, thank you again.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Most comforting: It is good to know I have fellow beings out there.
    Being on the ‘auty spec’ is a very special an important place to be: alternative views and insights are what the world needs (after compassion) , and autism has the capacity to provide.

    Liked by 4 people

  7. Thank you, as well, from me. It was the part about everyone thinking you’re “normal” that hit the hardest. My parents used to be open about the idea that my brother and I were Asperger’s, but now it seems like a taboo subject. Do they not believe it any more, now that I’ve learned to fit in much better? Do they think it would be discouraging to bring it up now?

    It’s so much more frightening to not have a reason for feeling so different. If I’m not Asperger’s, then what is wrong with me?

    Sorry to hijack your post. It was thought-provoking, and here’s the provoked thoughts.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Provoked thoughts are the best kind.

      I think people generally think that you want to be normal. Therefore by behaving “normally” you are being who you want to be. So they shouldn’t point it out.

      I completely empathise with it being more frightening not knowing.

      You are who you are, you choose, you decide.

      Sometimes we need to say what it is we need.

      Masking is a skill to have. It’s useful. But those closest to us need to know that it’s masking, not us.

      I hope that makes some kind of sense.

      Liked by 2 people

    2. I was Bipolar, and felt the same way. I was always different, but I didn’t know why. Then I found out. It hasn’t helped or hindered me, it just is. My mother will openly talk about it, but my father likes to pretend it doesn’t exist — unless he asks me if I took my pills because I’m not living up to his standards of the moment. I think everyone feels this way. I don’t think it really has anything to do with your diagnosis…I think it’s part of the human condition.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Yes!!! I don’t claim to understand. My nearly 7 year old was diagnosed last fall. And while its heart breaking to hear him say things like, “momma this world isn’t made for me” or “it’s like everyone else gets it but I never do and I don’t know why.” My only hope is to learn how his perfect little (brilliant) mind operates so I can give him what he needs. And of course we both have to give lots of grace to each other. It’s definitely a learning curve. I love your perspective. Thanks for sharing!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It’s so wonderful that you want to connect with him on his terms. Half the battle is won by acceptance.

      The world isn’t made for us, but we have a very important place in it, and always will. You sound like a lovely family.

      Liked by 1 person

  9. I worked with individuals who have Autism. They varied from verbose (and rude in many circumstances), to non-verbal (and rude in many circumstances). They all tried to fit in the best that they could, and tried to learn the rules. It was my job to prepare them and work with them so that they could have a vocation and a drive – whether it was just to better themselves, learn the job, or whatever. I loved working with them, because the truth is, they were better able to communicate things while I was trying to use precise language to explain situations. In a program with 20 people (then staff), the area would get a little noisy. I would have to attempt to quiet people down so they weren’t driving each other (and the staff) crazy. But that could take a while, because as staff I would have to talk to my co-workers so they could calm their individuals, and I would have to calm my individuals. It was not an easy task. However, one of my semi-verbal individuals would take it as long as he could and then just start screaming at the top of his lungs. The whole program would immediately become silent, because they understood that it was too much noise for him. Including the other individuals with autism. It was my job to learn about those I worked with and communicate with their families what I learned. In that individual’s case, he did a lot of yelling when I first started working with him. If someone even came too close to him, he would immediately start yelling. When I left that job, everyone understood that he was sensitive to sound and touch, he had special ear-phones that would muffle sounds so he was better able to tolerate it, and he understood that people touching him was not the worst thing that could happen, and even initiated touch with others. Another individual I worked with was, I was told many times, completely non-verbal. He would steal, grunt, and ignore you completely. I worked with him for a few years, at the end of it, he was no longer stealing (unless it was a different staff member working with him), and he was talking. He was unable to speak clearly, and most people just assumed it was noise. I took the time to learn to understand him, and as long as he wasn’t speaking at triple pace, I did understand most of it. Just taking the time to learn it made him a completely different person around me… he would tell me all sorts of things that he previously would try to communicate through stealing. His stealing was an outward manifestation of his desire to communicate; once I learned to understand him, he stopped stealing and started ASKING for things. I taught others to understand him as well (both staff and his peers) and he was much happier all of the time. Although he was rude both before and after I learned to understand him – he was very interested in grabbing women’s breasts, which did not make it easy for me to get a job-site that would last. However, he did learn that it was not OK to approach people he did not know, and people who did not understand what he was saying, so that cut down on it dramatically. However, he would still try to grab me, a few co-workers that understood him, and a few of his peers. But the truth was, he was doing it to be rude… because when he would start sneaking around to grab you and you said “please don’t do that”, he would hold his hand in front of your chest for a few seconds before bursting into giggles. He wanted to get caught. It was fun for him. He never apologized for who he was, and I never felt he should have to. I had to apologize, because it was me who took so long to understand them.

    The truth is, despite the many various issues that face those on the spectrum, us “normies” are really not any better off. Yes, I taught them to control and modify some of their behaviours (stomping their feet instead of throwing a table), but that was only half of the job. The other half was the best part of it: they taught me a lot about life, about who I am, and most of all, about what is truly there, under the surface. What you see is a mask, for almost everyone. Whether they force eye contact, or they avoid it; whether they speak eloquently or are non-verbal; it doesn’t matter. What matters is that all of us are good people who work hard to make people understand us. It’s frustrating when they don’t understand you (it’s just as frustrating for me to try to explain proper etiquette to someone who doesn’t understand it as it is for you to try to explain autism to someone who thinks they can relate to what you’re describing when they clearly don’t understand it). It does make you leave with a sense of failure at your ability to communicate. But the truth is, if you live you reality, people will understand you. They eventually understood me, and they were able to go to restaurants with me to eat lunch and they followed my lead rather than gulping down their food or trying to use a fork to block each other from taking off each other’s plates, etc. And in the end, I can honestly say, that I felt I understood them. They respected me for taking the time; I respected them for showing me the unfiltered, unrestrained beauty that is a real friend.

    Liked by 3 people

  10. Rhi, I read this again before sharing with my family. I truly laughed again at your comment about small talk, “… I hope there will be times when you won’t.” I have to remind myself that every time I see my 18-yr-old son. I guess he can’t thank you enough for reinforcing that!!
    I sincerely hope you are working on a book. You have so much wisdom and CLEARLY a relatable writing style (see above). And if you are ever moved to have a Q & A, AMA, (whatever) Facebook page* or blog, I’ll be first to sign up- no small talk, just sincere humble questions.
    *could be closed group, you pick questions you want to answer… 😊

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Thank you 🙂 funnily enough I used my Aspie-focus and wrote a book earlier this year in under 3 weeks. I think I should probably work on it a bit more before letting it loose on the public, but one day… I have a Facebook page that I am more than happy to respond to questions on (the link is hopefully on my main page, if it’s not, let me know here). Thank you so much for your response.

      I’m still learning how to be me.

      Liked by 2 people

        1. Aspie is still in use by lots of people, even though it’s not a formal diagnosis anymore. It essentially means someone with autism but no associated learning difficulties, so it’s accurate enough.

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  11. My younger brother is a non-verbal autistic. Luckily his diagnosis was early in life, however, nothing was to prepare my family of the upcoming challenges to come. Now in his twenties my brother has better communication skills though he only being able to retain a little sign language. It’s inspiring to hear about stories such as yours in order to understand what it is he goes through on the daily basis.

    Liked by 2 people

  12. I have been struggling with bipolar, depression, anxiety, ADD. I am high functioning. Because I HAVE to, because I can. But I cried alot in the bathrooms. I hand meltdowns in front of bosses about once a quarter. You hit the nail on the head. You know what you have known your whole life. Still, pressured to be normal, and you hide it so well, that you aren’t believed. Beautifully written… http://www.reinventavax.wordpress.com

    Liked by 2 people

  13. Insanely articulate! And I don’t mean ‘articulate for someone with autism’ I am not ignorant. Thank you for sharing, this is beautifully written.

    Liked by 2 people

  14. Love love love this post!! I became interested in the entire autism spectrum after working with a student that was on the high functioning end. I will never forget him telling me Mrs. Starr stop for just a minute and try to understand “my world” and I did just that.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I think of all people, you would know! Women can present differently, but lots of people are introverted or maybe have a couple of traits but not the difficulties, so are not autistic but may have behaviours that could be mistaken for autism.

      Liked by 2 people

  15. Autnot An Autistic Woman’s Journey, I just found your above blog through the Autistic Women’s Network, and once more I sat here, close to crying, thinking how much I can relate to it.
    I’m close to 64, diagnosed as being autistic at 62, finally believing it at 63, and through blogs like yours I’m learning só much.
    Since a year I’m in the strange situation I finally feel at home in a community I know nothing about, despite that I belong to it.

    I didn’t preténd to be normal, I thought I WAS normal. (whatever ‘normal’ may be anyway)
    I did everything I was supposed to do, everything my mom told my sisters and I, and yet my sisters belonged, and I never did.
    And I didn’t gét it.

    The nurse, spoecialised in autism, told me I see the world differently from ‘normal’ people, but I don’t know hów different. I mean …. how can I know I’m different, when I didn’t feel I was different?
    I know and understand now she had to be correct, but not due to her very engaged, but also pretty inadequate tries to make me see WHY I’m autistic.

    YOU, people like Amythest Schaber, facebook-sites like AWN, are teaching me whý I’m different, because somehow yóu seem to understand why you are, and piece by piece, I’m finally recognizing things I read, and it’s a blessing.

    I don’t get this world, but I don’t get the autistic world either yet.
    Yet for the first time in my life I feel I’m gonna make it, I’ll learn how to live MY life to the fullest, and I thánk you for (unknowingly) hélping me with it.

    THANK YOU, I wish you áll the best!
    P.s.: I love your sense of humor. #TomorrowI will contemplateWorlddomination Ha,ha,ha, such a good one …. hope your contemplating will lead to something gréat. You go, girl!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you for commenting. I love, “I didn’t pretend to be normal, I thought I was normal!”

      That really spoke to me. I thought I was normal too. Just a bit rubbish at being normal. A bit lost. Finding things harder than other people for no reason I could work out.

      The more autistic people I have contact with, the more I realise how much individual personality is the dominant feature. Our brains all work in a certain way for some things, but everything else is us. There’s no one type of autistic person. Just as there’s no one type of neurotypical person!

      I don’t know if there is an autistic world for us. But there is a freedom in enjoying the things you enjoy, and limiting the things you don’t enjoy, without judging yourself.

      You’re a part of an enormous group of people. You’re not alone.

      Liked by 1 person

  16. This summed up so much of how I often feel. I have long suspected that I am on the spectrum, but have lacked the resources required for a diagnosis. I’m in my forties, so there would be little point in it other than for my own edification. Regardless, it always thrills me to find a post like this that hits so close to home and makes me feel, however briefly, less alone in my peculiarity. Thank you.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. You are far from alone.
      Often just suspecting you might be is enough to make the adjustments you need. Diagnosis is good for some, but not a necessity. We all have our own journeys.

      Liked by 1 person

  17. Thank you, I’m 3 weeks post diagnosis, at the age of 48yrs. Still raw and humiliated by my bolt out the blue label. I come over NT 99% of the time and am desperately trying to figure out who I am and come to peace with it. You have made me feel less alone on this horrible, overwhelming and isolating self discovery journey I’m on. I’ve only started reading books and getting information on Aspergers women this last couple of weeks and your words have brought clarity. Thank you again.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Be kind to yourself. It’s a huge thing to learn, and if you feel there are negatives to the label, then that can be particularly hard.

      You are no different to the person you were before the diagnosis. You’re you. Completely and totally.

      Autism is an explanation. It’s a reason for why we look at things differently. It’s not a type of person. It’s not a personality. That’s all you.

      You’re definitely not alone anymore.

      Liked by 1 person

  18. I love your post. I too have had these experiences. I get in the most trouble at work when I follow directions, you know, EXACTLY, as they are given to me. Trying to watch for what people imply is simply exhausting. Or, when my best friend asks if I think her sweater is ugly and I do. Does she want me to tell the truth or not? And why can’t people just say what they mean? I never thought anything was wrong with me. I just thought people really liked lies.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. “I just thought people really liked lies.” I love this! People do really like lies. I remember trying to explain to my daughter why you shouldn’t tell people the truth all the time, even if they’ve asked for an honest opinion. Often people don’t want the truth, they want you to agree with them. And that’s fine, as long as you’ve learned the rules.

      People can mistake honest and literal for rude. That’s their inference. Rude is something else.

      Thanks for commenting.

      Liked by 1 person

  19. This was a very good read! I just started blogging..not in too far yet. I just jumped into it so i thought I would take a look at a few others. Yours caught my eye because we are trying to rule out if my son is autistic or not..Many changes and challenges each day and no one day is the same. Therapy has helped a ton but we wont know if it has been enough or not for a couple more months when we do our review.

    I know the ages make huge difference, but reading this from your point of view gave me some insight on some of the things a 2yr old could be feeling at times. so thanks!

    Liked by 2 people

  20. So glad I found this blog.. love your words! Having two of my 3 children on the spectrum and to be honest think most days I too may be an aspie along with my daughter… So refreshing to read exactly how it is and how I have felt for so long. Thank you for sharing!

    Liked by 2 people

  21. I would suggest you read one of my blog posts. It is called “Remember Who You Are”. I talked about how important it is to be who you are. I am someone who does try to fit in with everyone else and accept me for who I am. I keep to my interests even though they are different than everyone else. I still want to be accepted by everyone. Just like you, I have a “disability”, but I see it as a “difference” and an amazing strength.

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  23. The word ‘spectrumy’ rings in my ear! I remember a friend of mine once told me that during one of her work days as a teacher she became undesirably part of a staff room conversation between two teachers whilst sat around a lunch table. From this conversation I realised how easily teachers can discuss confidential issues about students. It was a little worrying and heartbreaking. Thank you for this article.

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  24. I never really understood autism until reading this, so well put and easy to relate to, even without having it myself. Really interesting read and an important thing to feel free to talk about and express. I try to do the same on my blog too, talk about life the way it really is. For us all. 🙂

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  25. in every word, in every syllable you are talking about me. Every thought, every behaviour, every question and frustration i feel in day to day life is written here. I too was diagnosed in my thirties. I too have spent a lifetime watching, studying, researching how to appear ‘normal’ and i too do it so well that most people don’t know and can’t tell that i’m autistic. And oh, the frustration when you try and explain….It’s only been two years since my diagnosis, but seeing other autistics, in the talking group i go to, and online, like you, helps me feel a little bit more like it’s okay to be me. The autistic me, so thankyou for your wonderful writing.

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    1. I am younger than you two (erly twentees), I was younger when I was diagnosed as well. (about 14. I’m not good whith remembering time.) However, nothing happend after that. My depression and Burn-out were the more pressing metters and mom didn’t want to put a label on me. So for years I didn’t even know what autism realy is, since I only got a short explanation and had no one to talk about it. Only two years ago did I finally start to understand which part is the autism and wich part is the depression.
      Seriously, it feels great to find people who go through the same thing, who understand exactly how I feel. Whoos meanings I can really understand!
      :O 🙂 😀 XD

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I can never work out when would have been the best time to know. I do know that it’s the being understood that we missed out on most. Not just by other people, by ourselves too.

        Too long comparing ourselves to people who weren’t built like us. They’d feel miserable if they did it the other way around too!

        Being understood is such a magical and simple thing 😊

        Liked by 1 person

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