29 Years old, Connecticut, USA
In my opinion my biggest accomplishments are Being independent, being a father, a husband, and a well-respected person in my field. I never graduated highschool, but now I have a masters and 14 Certifications in my field. Since I was diagnosed I have decided to focus my efforts specifically on helping others with ASD. (You don’t need to advertise it, buts its planningacrossthespectrum.org (Website is not fully done)
I wish neurotypicals (those with not autism others) knew about autism
That there is no such thing as being a “little on the spectrum”. Having swollen ankles does not mean you are a “little bit pregnant”. What you might see is only a fraction of what we experience every day. Some of us may not even be able to describe it to you, since it is our normal. Anxiety is our normal state of being. You may not notice our sensory issues or adherence to routines, and the effort we need just to get through a day.
I would say the best resource, and anyone who is involved with autism in anyway should read “From Anxiety to Meltdown” By Deborah Lipsky. Not a single thing helped me or the people around me understand myself better. The cover and the intro do not do the rest of the book justice on how amazingly helpful this book us. I also think having a good partner and someone to talk to, and therapists who truly understand ASD and can help. A Dark Room, Tinted Glasses, Weighted blanket all have helped.
something I want to tell to the rest of the people on the spectrum:
Be yourself, and be kind to yourself. Realize what your strengths are and try and find a way to make those valuable. I really think there should be more entrepreneurship for those on the spectrum. I think we undervalue ourselves and our ability to help others. Don’t be afraid to ask for help or accommodations. We act very different when talking about our special interests then other things. I say surround yourself by people who are as passionate as you.
Honestly I had all the “typical” signs that were there. I just did not put together that I was. Since nobody really knew “all” my symptoms. Passion for my job and my area of special interest overshadowed challenges I had in other areas. I remember talking to my spouse and said, “I don’t have a strict routine right?” and she thought of was joking and almost fell off her chair.
I got diagnosed when I was going through a particular rough time. At first I almost did not believe it. I had an idea of what “autism” was, and that was not how I thought I was. Once I learned more I felt relieved. Not only did I have an explanation into so many things and myself, Even better, I had real things I could do to make myself better.
Today feel so much more comfortable with myself and who I am. There is no doubt in my mind that the correct diagnosis was made. I don’t suffer through things at my expense. I take care of myself and my needs in order to be more productive. I have no shame in staying away from clothing that is uncomfortable, or keeping my office as dark as a bat cave. I don’t feel guilty about being myself.
My childhood was very rough, I was diagnosed with just about everything except ASD. I became a ward of the state, attempted Suicide many times. I just thought that what I was doing was wrong, and that normal people didn’t act like this. I was not aware of the things that caused me anxiety and the correct ways to handle them. I also had decent communication at my job(special interest) but communication outside of that was horrible. One thing that sounds almost unbelieve is I almost never finished sentences outloud and finished them in my head. The people around me started to finish the sentences for me. So I left a conversation thinking I had expressed myself when I actually had not!