Answering Your Questions About Autism, Part 1

Hello, dears!! Today’s blog post is one that I’m quite excited about. A while ago, I created a questionnaire, asking people about their perspectives on autism, and I got more responses then I expected (I got 44 responses!). I’ll be sharing the poll responses some time soon, but at the moment I’m just gonna answer the questions people asked on it. I’m only doing half of them this time though, due to there being too many questions. So yeah! I hope you guys enjoy (:

The Questions

I honestly don’t know that much about [autism], I do wonder, though, is it just something you’ve learned to deal with? I have a lot of things where I just have to deal with them, even when they’re hard. Is autism the same way? (Idk if that made sense, sorry XD)

Ooh okay, this is an interesting question. In a way, yes, I have learned how to live with my autism. I’ve accepted it as a part of my life, and I’m honestly proud to call myself an autistic. I’ve learned to deal with my sensory overloads and other difficult aspects of being on the spectrum (hint: noise canceling headphones are lifesavers and I love mine so much). So yeah, I guess in a way, I’ve learned how to deal with it. 

Do people with autism like to be treated differently because of the autism?

Okay, so. I can’t generalize this for every autistic, because obviously, I’m just me. So, I’m just giving my opinion on this. Please note that my opinion does not equal other autistic’s opinions. Ask each of us this question individually please (: Anywaysss back to the question. For me personally, yes and no. I like it when my friends are aware of my autism and check in with me during like sensory overload situations and stuff, and I like being the cute cinnamon roll friend hehe. But also, I do want to be treated as a typical person in most situations. Treating me like I have no brain or anything is rude and demeaning. I experience most normal 15 year old things, ok? Don’t treat me like I don’t.

What are some challenges caused by the way people react to or treat you? What should others know to avoid causing these scenarios?

Ooookay…this is gonna be a long answer. Some stuff I have experienced because of how people treat me includes people not being mindful of my triggers (that one’s not autism related though), being told that I ‘don’t seem like I have autism’, being told that vaccines cause autism and that autism should be cured, people using my being overly sensitive against me, and other stuff. To avoid causing this kind of stuff, pay attention to when someone tells you that you’re triggering them (triggers are valid and should be respected). Seriously, please don’t tell an autistic person that they don’t seem autistic. It’s not a compliment, ok? It’s both invalidating us and rewarding us for masking (which should never be rewarded). Even if you believe that vaccines cause autism and/or that autism is a disease that should be eradicated, don’t say that. It offends us and honestly it hurts. It’s basically like being told “You have a mental disease that was caused by getting vaccinated, and I think your disease should be cured”. It can make us feel like trash. And for heavens sake, don’t pick on an autistic person for their personality traits. I know I’m overly sensitive to being picked on, and I have a feeling other autistics are too. And honestly, just a good rule of thumb when dealing with autistic people (or even allistic people), is to just be nice to them, and to show them God’s love, and to respect them. That’s the best possible thing you can do (:

How is autism different in girls from in boys? (I know they’re *finally* doing more research into this)

Ahh I’m so excited that they’re finally doing research on this! Autism in girls has been an unspoken topic for so long, and I’m glad that that’s finally changing. So many autistic girls go undiagnosed, due to the fact that the diagnosing criteria for autism has been based on masculine autism traits. This is a huge issue in the medical community, because autistic boys are exceedingly different from autistic girls. Boys with autism tend to not know how to mask, seem ‘more autistic’, and have more cliche autism traits. Girls with autism typically learn how to mask from a very young age, therefore hiding more of their autism traits. There’s a bunch of stuff I could say on this topic, but for now, I’ll leave you with that.

I would love to know how people with autism feel about how it is portrayed in society. 

I can’t speak for every autistic person, but I know that a lot of us (including myself) feel that autism is greatly misrepresented in society. I mean, all the characters who are said to be autistic are just stereotypes of us. We are more than socially awkward 12 year old boys who hyperfixate on trains and are savants. A lot of autistic girls get told that we don’t seem autistic, due to masking. So I guess that gets rid of the socially awkward stereotype (even though I’m kinda socially awkward haha). There are autistic girls, not all autistics are boys. Our hyperfixations vary greatly, so uhh don’t assume that we love math or trains or medical stuff. And most autistics are not savants, so uh yeah there’s that. See what I mean? Autism is not represented in society well at all. If you want to find some good autism representation, please please please pay attention to own voices autism books and tv shows and movies. Ownvoices autism rep is almost always realistic and amazing (:

Is there anything that I might unknowingly say that could be considered hurtful to autistic people?

I’m so glad that someone cared to ask this question! I wish more people cared about this. Anyways. Some things you might unknowingly say that might hurt us includes, “You don’t seem/look/act autistic”, making fun of our hyperfixations/special interests, using the word ‘retarded’ casually, making jokes about the disability community, and making fun of our stims. All of these invalidate us in different ways, and make us feel awful. Just…don’t do these, okay? They’re just…not good. I might do a post later about why these are wrong.

Did God create autism or is it part of the fall? Will you have autism in heaven?

Oooh, this is a wonderful question (my mom actually asked this one, and I decided to include it because it was interesting). I don’t know a lot about theology and whether I’ll have autism in heaven, and all that, so I’m just gonna answer based on some personal theories. I think that at the end of the day, autism is just your brain working differently. So, I think God created the good parts of autism, and that I’ll probably have the good parts of autism in heaven. But I suspect that the more difficult aspects of autism are a result of the fall.

What’s one thing you wish your allistic friends knew about autism? 

Quite frankly, I wish that my allistic friends would just be patient with me on slow brain processing days (actually they’re all pretty good at this, but I thought I’d include that anyways). There are hard days where I can’t read tones and can’t form thoughts that make sense, and honestly having my friends help on these days is really good. I also wish that my online school allistic friends would use tone tags more often. For heavens sake, tones are hard enough in real life, they’re just worse online. Oh and one more thing (that’s not entirely autism related but who cares) would be using trigger warnings. I get triggered so easily, and it can be really difficult to have people who aren’t mindful of trigger warnings. So please, ask people what their personal triggers are and use trigger warnings when you can. I know that while trigger warnings don’t help everyone, they help me a lot.

Does talking about your autism/the fact that you’re autistic make you uncomfortable?

Yes, and no. I don’t see any shame in being autistic, and so I just sort of openly discuss it with people. But also people like to give really rude responses and honestly, it can make me wary to tell people I’m autistic. I feel like a lot of people don’t know what to do with the concept of autism, and so they just…ignore comments I make about my autism.

Well, I guess that’s kinda it for this post. Thank you all so much for reading! If you enjoyed this post, please don’t forget to click like, leave a comment, and follow me for similar content.

What are some questions you have about autism? 

Let me know in the comments! 

Introducing The Blooming Project

Ahhh this project is something I am super excited for. Basically ack how do I even begin to explain this? Okay so. This project was inspired by Morgan Harper Nicholes’s book, All Along You Were Blooming and it was also inspired by the whole toxic glow up culture. So often, I see girls pinning glow up stuff on pinterest. and a lot of it is very diet culture-y and ‘instant fixes’ and honestly it’s not very healthy. It’s harmful for your mental health, and quite frankly some of the ideas are straight up dangerous. But also, what else are you supposed to do? You want to improve your life and achieve a better healthier lifestyle. 

This is where the blooming project comes in.

Instead of focusing on a harsh glow up that will be hard to stick to and might even be dangerous, we’re focusing on a gentle ‘blooming’ that will slowly change your life and be a lot easier to stick to. It’s actually backed up by science (yay!!), so you know these methods work. The best part is, if you guys enjoy this challenge, I might try doing mini blooming challenges every couple of months.

Here’s how the blooming project is gonna work. For the next 2 months (I know, I know, that’s a long time…but that’s how long this project takes), you’re all gonna be following a customizable schedule that you put together for yourself, modeled after my personal schedule. I’ll even be doing this schedule alongside you all! 

Just a quick remember, don’t let this project affect your health in any way. Modify the schedule as needed, and don’t push yourself too hard. Your health is far more important *hugs*. Love you all ❤

How To Do The Blooming Project

  1. The first (and, in my opinion, most important step) is to pray before beginning this project. Find out what God wants for you, and keep Him at the center of this project. The goal is not to be the skinniest or prettiest or best. The goal is to learn how to live this incredible life that we have been given to the fullest. 
  2. Evaluate your life in these 5 categories: Spiritual (your relationship with God, how you’re doing religeon-wise), Mental (how your mental health is), Physical (how your body is), Intellectual (all academia related activities), and Lifestyle (how you live life). Rate yourself in each category, and make a list of how you can improve each category (basically make a glow up list…look up glow ups on Pinterest if you need some ideas).
  3. Set at least 3 overall goals for this project. They can be anything from ‘bake a cookie cake’ to ‘write a 50k word novel’. I know that my personal goals are gonna be to write a 60k word novel, get fully prepared to start my Etsy shop, read 2 classic novels, get in shape, and get more involved in Ydubs. Make sure your goals follow the SMART goals outline, or else the chance of you succeeding at them is…very slim (sorry to burst your bubble).
  4. Make a step by step outline for how to achieve those goals.
  5. Make a copy of this document, and put up to 3 assignments in each category, per week. You can see my personal plan for myself here.
  6. Now the fun part! Sitting back and enjoying the rest of this week, because when next week comes, you’re gonna start blooming, and your current lifestyle is gonna go away completely 😂 
  7. While you’re waiting, you can make a vision board for this project!

I hope that this has been a helpful guide! I can’t wait for you all to begin blooming alongside me *hugs*. You guys can do this, and I am so proud of you all for taking this big first step! Don’t forget to click like and follow me for similar content. ❤

What are some ways you’re hoping to bloom in the next two months? Are there any questions you have for me, on the topic of blooming? Let me know in the comments! (:

/ Ad Gloriam Dei /