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How public are you about your Autism?

verityverity Administrator, Citizen
Since you have become aware of you Autism, how willing are you to mention this to others? Who do you mention it to? Close family, extended family, close friends, general friends, explorers, General Practice doctors, specialist clinicians, civil servants, police, etc?

Do you mention it causally or under specific circumstances?

How has this changed over time? Are you more or less like to mention it?

What reasons do you attribute to these answers, and how strongly do you feel about it?

Comments

  • HylianHylian Citizen, Mentor
    I've told my friends about it. I don't hide my autism, but I try to not mention it IRL unless I really get to know someone, or have to disclose it for some reason. That's partly due to the fact that I don't have a diagnosis yet and don't want to have to explain that.
  • AmityAmity Administrator, Citizen
    edited January 2022

    verity said:
    How willing are you to mention this to others?
     
    Who do you mention it to? Close family, extended family, close friends, general friends, explorers, General Practice doctors, specialist clinicians, civil servants, police, etc?

    Do you mention it causally or under specific circumstances?

    How has this changed over time? Are you more or less like to mention it?

    What reasons do you attribute to these answers, and how strongly do you feel about it?

    Im quite reluctant to mention my ASD, to anyone really.

    Close family, friends, therapists  and General Practitioners.

    I only mention Autism under specific circumstances, like in a medical situation, or if the family member is generally trustworthy and it would help our relationship.

    As time has passed I'm more comfortable mentioning it, though Im not sure that means I am more likely to communicate about being Autistic.

    Reasons... late diagnosis meant that I had been labelled and categorised by lay people in particular.

    I guess that process taught me about human nature and bias, what seems to be essentially discrimination towards people deemed as "other".

    It feels as though this bias will exist among the majority of people regardless of the knowledge about me being Autistic.

    Its not just lay people either, a GP told me that my private diagnosis was not likely to be accurate and that if I provided her with a copy she would shred it after reading, as this would be safer than keeping it on file.

    Other GPs have responded with an 'oh thats interesting, I wouldn't have thought you were'  and never mentioned it again.

    When I told a  counsellor about my Aspergers diagnosis he cautioned me about the opportunists that exist in private assessment, I shared the report anyway, hoping it would help him understand me better, but he responded to reading it by telling me about all the evidence he had found in the report to support his position...

    I could go on.
  • Only on a need-to-know basis, so it's close family and a few friends. I never made any effort to "hide" it, but if it's not relevant in some way to the relationship or a specific situation, I see no reason to mention it.

  • darkcloak_dragondarkcloak_dragon New Member, Member

    I wouldn't mention it to anyone except maybe a doctor who was treating or assessing me for another learning disability/neurological condition (at an auditory processing evaluation, for example). That's because the information might be relevant to the treatment/assessment and because such doctors are really the only people with sufficient medical knowledge to understand what autism is.

    When I was desperate for effective care for IBS, I tried asking for a referral on the basis that GI issues were particular to autism and that a doctor who knew something about autism might be a better choice than the GI team I was currently using.

    I mentioned it in a message when I was approached by an autistic person on a dating site. If I had that to do again, I'd wait until I'd met the person a few times.

    It's pointless to tell anyone. Virtually no one knows enough about autism to properly contextualize the information. I've had a neurologist who specializes in autism tell me that my cognitive test scores are too high for me to be autistic. Also there seems to be a concerted effort in the medical community to deny the existence of autistic people who are not intellectually disabled or stereotypically non-speaking/socially unresponsive and significantly disabled.

  • verityverity Administrator, Citizen

    It is slow process. Some are still stuck on Kanner's definition of Autism.

    I do think this work both ways. Some are also in denial of the more challenging aspect of being on the spectrum, especially diminished or impeded functioning. It is important to have a high bar we should not write people off and we don't want communication and motor disorders to be seen as intellectual impairment (which is all too convenient when it comes to denying funding), but there are higher function folk have very little awareness fo the other side of the spectrum, and this compound some families' view that we should not comment on it. We are here talking about ourselves with full autonomy other aren't in that position.

    I also had IBS. I have found that GFDF helps and and overall focus on physical an mental health. A side effect of GFDF as long as you don;t rely purely on packaged/processed food substitutes for everything is you tend to eat fresh meat fruit, and veg, if you weren't already doing so.

  • My birth and chosen family know, as do medical professionals that see me- both mental and physical health ones. The solicitor and others involved with the negligence claim my daughter started, over the falls I had,they know.

  • SlyFoxSlyFox Citizen, Member

    I try not to tell anyone besides my family unless I have to.

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