5 Messages for My Younger Autistic Self: Things we wish we had known while growing up undiagnosed with autism.

Erin Bulluss, Abby Sesterka

Research output: Other contribution

Abstract

In a previous article, we discussed the late diagnosis of autism, an increasingly common phenomenon that has been attributed to increased awareness, broadening of the diagnostic criteria, and the introduction of the notion of an autism spectrum.1 This diagnostic process involves rewinding back to childhood and closely examining our experiences to find evidence of lifelong autistic characteristics.

During this process of reflecting on childhood experiences, and as they are clearly marked as autistic, one is often led to ask, Why did nobody see this sooner? Why has it taken this long to know and understand? and then to question whether an earlier diagnosis would have spared heartache or pain or a feeling of not belonging.

In reflecting on this process, we have formulated a (non-exhaustive) list of things we wish we could have told our younger autistic selves. While we cannot turn back time, we can share these messages with the autistic youth of today to guide the development of a positive autistic identity and to promote mental health and well-being.
Original languageEnglish
TypeInsights about Autism
Media of outputBlog post
PublisherPsychology Today
Publication statusPublished - 9 Mar 2020

Keywords

  • autism
  • positive autistic identity
  • mental health

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