Dear Autistic Kid, on meltdowns and shame

Person standing far away with a circle of life above their head and orange sparks flying like a fountain off of the circle.

Remember that it’s okay to be autistic. It’s okay to wear headphones or sunglasses, or use weighted blankets or fidget toys (lots of us autistic adults do!). It’s okay to want things a certain way. It’s okay to not look into people’s eyes. It’s okay to be you. Don’t let people, or society in general, take that away from you.

Dear Autistic Kid, on school and isolation

Someone holding a red backpack out of frame wearing white shoes next to a crosswalk.

I want to let you know that autistic adults are here. Autistic adults exist. Most of us have had tough experiences in elementary school and junior high school. Personally, I felt rather isolated growing up in school.

Adult Misdiagnosis – The Default Path to an Autistic Identity

Woman with shaved head sitting in a hallway office behind a glass window with her face obscured by blinds in that are in the foreground of the image.

This post consists of 46 quotes from autistic people. If you can, please read them all. Please listen to autistic voices.

Why Autism Research Isn’t For Autistic People

In the US, you can’t be an autism researcher in most labs without accepting the pathological model of autism. You must reference old research, mostly done by white cisgender male researchers on white cisgender autistic boys. You must talk about the deficits of theory of mind and the difficulties in social communication. I’ve seen at …

Transitioning to Graduate School: StairwayToStem

In case you missed it, I recently wrote a guest blog post on StairwayToStem, a website which provides resources for helping autistic students transition to college and graduate school. They kindly split up the series into 3 parts for me: Part 1: Transitioning to Grad School and Adjusting to the New Environment Part 2: Challenges …

Autistic Horror Tropes – #BoycottProdigy

White boy with blonde and green hair and freckles, with glasses on leaning on a building, looking past the camera with mouth slightly open. Wearing a purple hoodie with neon green on the inside of it. A bridge by a city is in the background of the image.

[discussed: ableism, cure rhetoric, abuse] (One caveat here: I know nothing about film making, and I'm not trying to say I do in this post. I'm also not trying to assume that everything I say here will be true or happen in the movie - but they did make a trailer, and that is what …

Autistic (and Neurotypical Lack Of) Effort

Red landline phone with earphone point up laying on a white background.

[CW: ableism/NT misinterpretation] Autistic people get run over, socially speaking, especially in new environments or with new people (and unfortunately it can be with people you know, too). I've been yelled at at least three times by medical professionals, and also by a patient because I failed to close the door within one second of …

The Neurotypical Autism Diagnosis

Six different colorblind tests with numbers in each circle.

Imagine that someone is colorblind, yet they have the job of identifying and detecting colors, and everyone around them thinks they are doing a great job getting all of the colors right. There's no oversight or check by someone who sees in color. No one even thinks twice about it really. Imagine those people being …

Facial Expressions and Intent

happy black son and father sitting in park smiling at each other

Essentially, by not providing that social response, people can read whatever they want into my still/unsmiling face. This explains to me why I often become the backboard of people's emotions and assumptions.

“Sensitivities”

What do I need to do to make non-autistic people understand that we have different sensory experiences than them, and have had different sensory experiences since birth? They can be overwhelming, unpleasant, and painful. They can be beneficial in some circumstances, and honestly, debilitating in many neurotypical environments. They can be both. But one thing is certain: They exist, and are real.