A few weeks ago I was officially given a diagnosis of autistic spectrum condition. I am autistic, I’ve been autistic my whole life, but not until being just over 26 am I actually diagnosed.
It was back in February 2014 where my old psychiatrist said she believed I’m autistic and wanted to get me referred for assessments. I was relieved at her words, for a few years prior my mind had been wondering about autism, but the anxiety at opening up and being met with rejection was too overwhelming so I stayed quiet.
Between 2014 and now I’ve been finding more and more out about autism and therefore being able to understand myself better.
Things in the past which had made no sense were beginning to make sense. I thought me hiding behind stacks of chairs with my eyes shut and hands over my ears at discos in primary school was just something I did, now I know I was trying to desperately get away from the people and block out the flashing lights and music. I thought me regularly arguing with my biology teacher because I refused to write down the aims and objections for the lesson in our exercise book was me being a stubborn arse. Now looking back I realise that to me writing down aims and objections made no logical sense as I was doing the work in my exercise book and the aims and objections would waste paper, what she was asking was completely illogical to me and therefore I wasn’t doing it as it made no sense to.
This blog would go on for pages if I looked back and wrote all the things I can remember from my past which didn’t make much sense, but now a diagnosis of being autistic gives an explanation.
I’ve learnt so much about autism over the last two years, it has helped me understand myself and allowed me to realise why I am like I am. I can now put in place things to help me.
Picture description [‘The picture above is of me, a white trans man wearing glasses sat on a sofa. I have a teddy(William) who is a light brown with black eyes and a black nose on my lap with my rainbow weighted blanket covering my torso and the body of my teddy’]
I said above I can now put in place things to help me, discussing those will be another blog, but I added the picture to show two of those things. William and my weighted blanket.
I’ll always be autistic and I’m ok with that. I’m not going to lie and say everything about being autistic is great and I never wish my brain worked differently though. There are the times I’ve sobbed after miscommunications and wished I was allistic (people who aren’t autistic) so I could communicate with people better. The sensory overloads after a few hours of human interaction that leave me mentally exhausted and physically feeling ill and wiped out are horrible, the meltdowns, the self injury stims (which usually accompany negative feelings) the feelings of being an alien and being expected to know exactly how humans work and interact etc is so stressful and anxiety inducing.
I know, no different though, plus I’m not swapping all the bits I like about being autistic to be allistic. I love how I’m obsessed by the Tudors, my ease at learning dates and facts, my love for playing, watching and writing quizzes, the way I am so logical and see the world in a different way and can give people options or answers they had never thought of. As my best friend said the other day I’m the voice of reason when he said something negative about himself that wasn’t logical and I told him so.
So yeah, I’m Oliver and I’m autistic and I’m ok with that, don’t try to change me, cure me, expect me to fit into your views of the world, don’t expect me to act or behave allistic/neurotypical, because I’m not and I’m not hiding who I am to fit into how society wants me to be.