Over a decade ago, when I was working as a low-level administrator in a university student support unit, I remember a student who was a regular and frequent visitor to our service. He came in virtually every day. He spoke in a staccato, "mechanical"-sounding voice. He always wore the same choice of clothing: blue outdoor … Continue reading Why I “can’t possibly be Autistic”, Reason #3: I’m not THAT rigid, right?
I've been something of a performer all my life. At primary school, it was drama. I never got to be the heroine or the pretty princess, but that didn't bother me (mostly). Gleeful, gorgeous, grotesque riches were bestowed upon me in the form of 'character' parts: witches, ghosts, and anyone requiring an accent. I got … Continue reading Performance
As a kid, most of my spare time was spent drawing. It was my earliest passion. I was no savant. But I suppose, on reflection, I did have at least some innate "gift". The people I colourfully produced aged just three, in bright felt tip, were anatomically correct (in as much as having, for example, … Continue reading A passion, stolen
[Author's note: I'm publishing this post almost simultaneously with a previous one because I had both stored up as drafts in my paper notebook, but hadn't had sufficient "get-up-and-go" to publish them until now. This is the more recent of the two.. However, I felt that the other post was sufficiently time-specific to need publishing … Continue reading It’s never all bad.
[Author's note: I'm publishing this post almost simultaneously with a subsequent one because I had both stored up as drafts in my paper notebook, but hadn't had sufficient "get-up-and-go" to publish them until now. This was written a few days ago, and it doesn't quite fit my current mood – the accompanying post does. However, … Continue reading Picture this.
I was very well-behaved at school. It wasn't that I always agreed with the reasons for complying, conforming, or doing a particular thing I was asked; I simply found the idea of being told off or criticised in front of others too stressful to contemplate. I drew far too much attention to myself as it … Continue reading Logic, behaviour, and discipline
Before April came around, I'd been mentally conjuring up my plans for activism, amplification, signal boosting, the promotion of acceptance, and whatnot. As it happens, events have conspired against me, and I haven't been as active in railing positively against the "awareness industry" (as fantastic new blogger Little Sparrow puts it) as I'd hoped to be. … Continue reading #AutismAppreciation: 7 things that make me a valuable employee
The other day, I was attending another SEED workshop. This time, the focus was on disability and social class (we'd already delved deep into race, gender and sexuality), and I was super-keen, as always, to get into the discussion. I felt I had plenty to say on this particular subject, and plenty I hoped to learn … Continue reading We need to stop apologising.
My dear, wonderful girl You had a feeling you were different. And now you know for sure. Your brain works a little differently from those of many people around you. And at times, you don't know what to make of that. Does it change anything, or does it change nothing? You've been given this label. … Continue reading To an autistic girl
It's my belief that I was depressed pretty much continuously from late primary school right up until some point in my mid-to-late 20s. Anecdotal evidence (...Twitter...) suggests that this is pretty typical among late-diagnosed autistics. Don't get me wrong. Aside from occasional episodes of self-injurious stimming, I rarely self-harmed. I usually managed to get out … Continue reading Why?