July 23, 2021

Why do some #ActuallyAutistic advocates make a “big deal” about “little things” like colors, symbols, and terms?

Because those things are like a canary in a coal mine.

A person or organization who isn’t willing to budge on words or images is more likely to resist autistic input on bigger issues, too. If they aren’t …

July 22, 2021

When someone teaches me a new process, I usually ask them to go slow. Historically, this has helped me to stay calm amid an onslaught of new information.

Today, however, I learned that speed is not the issue. What my brain actually needs is a pause at every transition, and the right to decide when …

July 17, 2021

Technically, I don’t have synesthesia. But my brain does something similar, with extra steps.

Each letter in the alphabet makes me feel a certain way. It’s sort of like an aura, but felt instead of seen. Colors also have auras – an emotional experience on top of a sensory experience. And a letter can feel …

July 17, 2021

I wish I could be in water, without water being on me.

It feels so good, deep in my bones, to move myself through the otherworldly substance, buoyed up by the rhythm of waves or propelled forward in exhilaration as they crash.

Yet it feels so terrible when wet skin meets the air, and trickling …

July 15, 2021

Anyone who sees me only in a group setting will tell you I’m the happiest person they’ve ever met. They may be correct, but for the wrong reasons.

It’s true that I have a deep-seated contentment, rooted in reflection. My day-to-day emotions range from euphoria to defeat, and everything in between, but the overall narrative …

July 5, 2021

Do you procrastinate? If so, what helps?

“Procrastination” is an outer behavior, not an inner experience. So when I try to follow anti-procrastination tips from someone whose mind is very different from mine, it’s less likely to help. On the other hand, I’ve learned a lot from people like me – neurodivergent folks who struggle …

July 3, 2021

I love it when I discover a song lyric that fits seamlessly into my everyday life.

Examples include: “If you need me, call me,” “I see what’s happening here,” “You are gonna turn out fine,” and “I wasn’t aware that was something a person could do.”

Quoting a lyric is a way to express my …

July 2, 2021

Students who don’t follow directions give me so much strength.

When a student seems to be ignoring what I’ve asked them to do, my outer response is very different from my inner response. My outer response is: Confirm that they heard me. Break it down into smaller steps. Present the steps visually, or in writing. …

June 28, 2021

Many autistics despise being called robots, because it falsely implies that we lack emotion, empathy, and even humanity. Seriously, never compare someone to a robot unless they’ve already done so themselves.

That being said, there are also autistics who feel warmly about robots, and see them as a useful metaphor for our differences. I am …

June 27, 2021

Why do bullies (of all ages) tend to pick on autistic people (of all ages)? Is it really just that we’re weird enough to make an easy target?

Or, do we threaten their power somehow?

I’m socially oblivious in many ways. Besides established authority figures, I don’t know how to figure out who has power, …