Tonight at an advocacy event, a parent tried to assure me that autism doesn’t define me.
“It does, though,” I said.
“It may be 95% of who you are,” she insisted, “but you’re still beautiful and amazing.”
“I need you to trust me about something,” I said, forgetting to thank her for the kind words. “Will you believe me?”
She nodded yes.
“100% of me is autistic, it makes me who I am, I would be a completely different person without it, and I LOVE IT.”
She cheered, high-fived me, and told me I was cool.
Parents want to reassure their kids that they are “more” than their autism because they don’t see:
1) how absolutely central it is to our identities, and
2) how absolutely beautiful it can be to see the world the way we do.
I want to change that. 🙂