There is something that I have realised I have never spoken about on my blog, meanwhile I have shared it on Instagram and Facebook. (That’s the problem with trying to have too many social media’s). In February of this year I was diagnosed as having Autism Spectrum Disorder.
This might come as a surprise to you, or not. Either way, if you had asked me two years ago if I was autistic I might even have laughed at you. This is not saying anything about me or you, it is saying something about the way that autism is represented to the world and how little most people actually know about it.
For clarification; as there are most certainly people who are going to read this who were around before 2013. In 2013 the American Psychiatric Association’s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-IV) renamed Asperger Syndrome to the broader definition of Autism Spectrum Disorder which includes both Autism and Asperger Syndrome. (reference: Wiki)
There is really so much to talk about this topic in general that I will need to do multiple posts. However the purpose of this post is to explain why I want to post about it here.
Why Post at All?
Why would I want to post about my Autism? Well the reason I want to talk more about my autism is directly linked to the fact that I was already an Adult before I realised I was Autistic. I say “realised I was autistic” as separate to “diagnosed” because although I did get a diagnosis and that can be useful the most important part was my self realisation. The self knowledge is what allowed me to start doing research and being able to implement coping mechanisms! I did this long before my diagnosis as the diagnostic process took me around 5 months which honestly is quite short for a national health care system.
A lot of the information on Autism Spectrum Disorder that is out there is either written by scientists and doctors who are not autistic, this information tends to be very one sided and pathologising, Or the information is aimed at parents of children, maybe directly aimed at teens themselves. This leads to either very negative portrayal (understandably because doctors usually focus on what is “wrong” with you) or a very infantalised portrayal with very little information for someone who has made it to adulthood.
Thankfully, in recent times there are more and more autistic adults who are putting their voices out there and I guess I would like to be one of those people.
Some examples that I follow:
Why Post here on this blog?
Good question, why would I post about my autism here on this blog instead of starting a new dedicated blog just for autism posts. I have a couple of reasons.
One: I would like to give a full view of my autism rather than a very flat portrayal that skips out the real me. I don’t want the blog to be just a collation of information that skips the real human behind the experience. Therefore by including my posts on my usual blog which (in my opinion) encapsulates a lot of my real life I am hoping to give a real picture of how a female autistic adult’s life might look. I specify female here because in the past a lot more attention was given to male autstics unless the female had particularly high support needs. I prefer the terms “high support” and “low support” as opposed to “low functioning” and “high functioning” (more about this in a future post).
Two: I do not have enough energy (spoons if you subscribe to Christine Miserandino’s Spoon theory) to try and run multiple blogs. As I have said in the beginning of this post, having a Facebook, an Instagram, and a Blog is almost too much for me already. Let us not forget the KO-fi, Payhip, Ravelry and Folksy for selling my patterns. My Youtube for supplementary knitting tutorials (for my patterns), My Pinterest, second Instagram and Redbubble for selling my art. Really I cannot contemplate starting ANOTHER blog.
Three: Although I have not spoken about my autism before (mostly because I didn’t know I was autistic) in a strange way this blog is almost a shrine to all of my special interests : Historical Knitting, knitting & crochet, cats, and art.
Thank you so much for reading this post. I will definitely be doing some more posts on autism from my perspective and experience.
Do you have anyone in your life who is on the Autism Spectrum?
Do you have any questions for me about Autism?
Are there any posts you’d specifically like to see ?
I hope that you are having a wonderful crafty week!
Peace and Love