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An Open Letter to Benedict Cumberbatch

Dear Benedict Cumberbatch,

You don’t know me, and I don’t know you, but I feel like I need to say something in the wake of your devastating comments about autistic people. If you were a friend, I’d sit you down with a cup of coffee and explain to you bit by bit why the words you said about people like me cut so deep.

But I don’t know you, so this is the medium I must use.  I am a 33 year old queer autistic person who has two children who are also autistic.  I’ve been a fan of your acting since I watched my first episode of Sherlock three years ago, and my admiration of your work has grown from there.  As a person who has admired Alan Turing and has read several biographies about him, I was very excited as a person who identified with two different parts of his identity – as a gay person, and as an autistic person (the latter which has been debated, but is almost 100% agreed upon by scholars as well as people who knew him).

I know that you’ve fielded quite a lot of questions regarding the characters you play, which is a natural part of discussing upcoming films, TV series, etc.  I’ve seen that many reporters and interviewers have touched upon the question of whether you play your characters (some of whom are not just characters, but who are people who actually lived) as autistic. It’s a difficult question, I’m sure, especially as your interaction with autistic people (to the public’s knowledge) is limited to just a few interactions in your research for Danny Boyle’s Frankenstein.

I wish you would have said “I don’t know.”  I wish you would have embraced your ignorance of this topic, instead of discussing how “lazy” it is to interpret Alan Turing as autistic, despite there being loads of evidence that he was.

I personally was drawn to your interpretation of Sherlock in part because of Sherlock’s physicality, as well as his (sometimes present) social ignorance, and just the many ways that Sherlock reminds me of, well, me.  Not to mention that the word “Asperger’s” was uttered on screen in regards to him, whether you think that is canonical or not. I’ve written extensively on my feelings regarding Sherlock being autistic, which for me extends beyond your version of Sherlock Holmes, but also includes most other adaptations as well as the original stories.

I also saw a similar physicality at a much more basic level reflected in your interpretation of the Creature in Frankenstein.  I later learned of the ways in which you obtained that knowledge, which sickened me tremendously.

So to hear you deny the fact that many of your characters can absolutely be interpreted as autistic, to hear you call your fans “lazy”, many of whom are actually autistic ourselves, is hurtful. But perhaps you just don’t know that nearly 2% of the population is autistic, and therefore you probably encounter more autistic people than you realize.  Many of us have been subjected to abusive therapy called Applied Behavior Analysis in an attempt to make us appear as though we were not autistic.  Its origins lie in Dr. Ivar Lovaas, who also worked with the “feminine boys project” to attempt to eradicate homosexuality in young boys.

It’s hurtful to be called lazy or wrong.  But it’s devastating to hear the way you talked about a 17 year old who you assumed had the “mental age” of a one and a half year old infant, all because he didn’t fit into your ideal of what a 17 year old disabled teenager should be.  And it’s horrible to read that you think that all autistic people do is struggle all the time – that your idea of autism is so skewed that all you can see is suffering and struggle and not the achievements and pure joy that is being autistic.

Over the past few days, I’ve read that it’s been confirmed that you’ll be playing Dr. Strange, who is canonically a disabled person.  Now, I’ve seen you in Hawking and I think you did a fantastic job there.  I’ve seen your (probably unintentional) portrayals of several autistic or at least non-neurotypical characters.  I don’t doubt that you absolutely can do a great job.

But the way you talk about us is telling.  I spent almost a year hyped up about going to see The Imitation Game, only to be completely devastated three weeks before the premiere.  I have only a passing desire to see it now, even though I’d been looking forward to it for quite some time.  I had a similar experience two years ago when I read your comments regarding Frankenstein.  It’s a good thing that Sherlock has such a long hiatus between series.  It allowed me some time to process my emotions about the things you’d said about people like me.  I can tell you I was far less excited about Sherlock series 3 than I was about Sherlock series 2.

You spoke recently about The Imitation Game, and you said that it “celebrates outsiders; it celebrates anybody who’s ever felt different and ostracized and ever suffered prejudice”.  I felt so very happy when I read those words, thinking, “this is someone who understands the person who he’s playing”. It was just a day or two later that my hopes were dashed as you denied Turing’s neurodivergence, and I wondered if perhaps I was the wrong sort of “different” for you – is it okay if I’m queer, but I’m the wrong sort of different if I’m autistic? Is there something shameful about being autistic, because your manner of speaking about us seems to indicate that is so.

So please, open your eyes and start paying attention to what autistic and otherwise disabled people are saying about our own experiences.  Don’t listen to Autism Speaks, no matter what your Star Trek co-stars may say.  Educate yourself, and show that you actually do care about what autistic people have to say.

In the meantime, I’ll continue writing as much autistic Sherlock and autistic Martin Crieff fanfiction as possible in an attempt to soothe myself from the massive disappointment I feel because of your comments.
——————

Have some links.

Frankenstein stuff

Frankenstein stuff, two years later. (found on page 3 of the article)

Alan Turing autism questions

Denial of Sherlock being on the autism spectrum

Short mention of Dr. Strange and disability

Autism Speaks link 1

Autism Speaks link 2

 
2 Comments

Posted by on December 12, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

Tags: , , , ,

Newsflash: That’s called educating!

Someone on another website posted the following statement:

if u try to fix & cure autistic ppl as part of being an ally you are not an ally you are the enemy and we will destroy you

 

I’m not going to argue the semantics of the statement, and I know that statements like this often devolve into accusations about what is meant by the phrase “destroy you”.  I tend to take a non-violent approach, and believe that it means “destroy the ideology behind this” rather than actually harming a person.

What I want to talk about today, though, is a response that someone wrote to this meme-like statement and the explanation that Autism isn’t something that needs to be cure.

actually, it does, to a certain degree. autism does not need to be eradicated, but it needs to be “helped” so that people can live a functional, productive life.

 

I sat back and read that and thought about the disparities between how people treat autistic (and to a lesser extent, other non-neurotypical) kids and how they treat neurotypical kids.  

Referring back to the last statement about how “[autism] needs to be helped so that people can live a functional, productive life”, I find myself baffled by the idea that this is anything other than education in one realm and parenting in another.  If your child is allistic or neurotypical, you’re going to teach them right from wrong, how to make friends, how to tie their shoelaces, and any number of other skills that are necessary for “functioning” in the real world.  But doing so for an autistic person means therapy and many NT people (like the anonymous person in the quote) is something entirely different and radical? 

It’s not.  It’s not difficult for me to look at these scenarios and realize that you’re basically doing the same thing.  You’re teaching an autistic person, and you’re teaching an allistic person.  Why do we continue to stigmatize something that should be an essential part of education and parenting just because the person involved is an autistic one? 

I know the reason.  It’s ableism.  It doesn’t make it right, and that’s one of the many things that needs to change.

I am a former English teacher. I  taught for a full year and a few months at different levels (6th-12th grade).  I loved it, but it wasn’t the right fit for me for various reasons (many of which were autism-related).  I say this to say that I know what educators do, the things that we teach beyond the subject matter.  I know that we often modify our lesson plans so that we can reach children who learn differently than the lecture-take notes form of learning (which doesn’t really work for a lot of students anyway).  I am very fond of individualized learning, and I know a lot of teachers are, too, because creating different ways of presenting lessons means more kids are interested.  Meeting kids at their level means that they’re more interested in what they have to say.  When they aren’t treated like they’re automatic failures because they don’t learn like everyone else does (or how they perceive everyone else does), they thrive.  I’ve taught disabled kids, I’ve taught immigrant kids who were learning English for the first time at age 12, I’ve taught gifted kids, I’ve taught your average bookworm kid, etc. etc. etc.  To me, I don’t see a whole heck of a lot of difference between teaching the bored gifted kid in the way they learn best, and the learning disabled/autistic/ADHD/etc kid in the way they know best.

To me, the only difference is that the IEPs made it easier to know where to start.  It gave me a starting point.  It’s a little different with parenting, because you don’t know where to start at first.  You see your kid’s strength and weaknesses, and as long as you’re ignoring the voices of those that will tell you that your kid is a tragedy (such as Autism Speaks or any other number of sources that make us out to be burdens), you’re going to try and meet your kid where they’re at.  

My eldest is struggling academically because of the poor choice to send her to a “top notch autism school” for a year and a half.  While they addressed teaching her life skills, they didn’t do very well on focusing on academics, something I failed to grasp at the time.  When she left that school and transferred to an exceptional local public school, she had some difficulties. I as a parent am not going to ignore that and just try and expect that she should be doing exactly the same things that her brother is. She lost a whole year and a half of education, and of course she’s going to need some time to catch up with her peers.   I’m going to meet her where she’s at, not where I expect she should be at.

It should be simple.  Educate your children, regardless of neurotype, in the way they learn best.  Prepare them for life as best as you can.  Teach them the skills that they need in order to survive.  Teach them that they aren’t failures if they don’t live up to their own expectations, or the expectations of their peers.  It’s okay to not be able to do something, and to ask for help. Being autistic and having low executive functioning skills does not mean that you’ve failed.  

 

 
1 Comment

Posted by on August 27, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

Tone it down

Originally posted on love explosions:

By Beth Ryan

Tone Policing.  Please stop doing that.

tone focus

Yellow background with a cartoon police officer holding his hand up. The text reads: I’m wrong. So let’s focus on your tone.

What is tone policing?
I’ve created some examples based on what I see people saying.  Often.  Too often.  Tone policing doesn’t just apply to Autism Speaks discussions.  But that’s what’s on my mind lately.

Example 1:
Person A:  Autism Speaks is a horrible organization which promotes the hatred of Autistic people.  Giving your money to them is funding a hate organization.  I am Autistic and you’re financing hatred of me.
Person B: I agree with you but people are just going to dismiss you as cranky and angry if you take that approach.  You need to gently educate people if you want them to listen to you.

Example 2:
Person A:  You shouldn’t support Autism Speaks because only 4%…

View original 929 more words

 
1 Comment

Posted by on June 18, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

#MYWRITINGPROCESS BLOG HOP

#MyWritingProcess Blog Hop

Thank you, Lucas Scheelk, for inviting me to participate in this blog hop! I feel honored and a little overwhelmed in being included in such a fantastic group of Autistic writers/poets/etc.

On what project(s) are you working?

I’m still working on Acceptance, a BBC Sherlock fanfic featuring a demisexual and autistic Sherlock in a polyamorous relationship with John Watson and Mary Morstan.  The storyline diverges from BBC canon quite a bit, but I have an idea of where I’m going with it.

I have an untitled 100,000+ word story (that is the culmination of two years of doing NaNoWriMo) of post-Reichenbach Sherlock fanfiction.  I’m undertaking the tedious task of splitting it into different segments so it’s more a series of vignettes with a connecting theme than it is a novel-length fanfiction.  It’s an exploratory piece focusing on the female characters in Sherlock, giving them their own stories, much of which the original source text has failed to do (either in the original Arthur Conan Doyle stories or in the BBC programming).

I’m also working on an untitled collaboration project with one of my close friends, which features a genderqueer Sherlock.

I’m also involved in roleplaying within a couple of different universes, sort of based on BBC Sherlock canon, but definitely with divergent storylines.  In one of those roleplays, I play a 20 year old allistic but not neurotypical John Watson to my rp partner’s 17 year old autistic Sherlock.

I have some other fanfiction works in progress which are mostly in the planning stages for various fandoms, including Harry Potter, Cabin Pressure, Welcome to Night Vale, and The Chronicles of Narnia.

How does your work differ from others in the genre?

I don’t really know how to answer this question fully, because I think that every writer’s work is different, and unique to their voice.  I think maybe the way that I tend to focus on character’s emotional states and then try and reflect that in the physicality of the work is the biggest difference.  I don’t know if other authors work from the inside outwards like I do, but it seems like a big difference.

How does your writing process work?

I hear conversations in my head between characters.  It usually starts as a bit of dialogue, or maybe something like a gif or a photo or just a phrase will get stuck in my head and just evolve from there.  For longer fics, I tend to have something more planned out, and I tend to be able to see the bigger picture.  But even with longer fics, I may have an idea of what’s going to happen but I can’t just sit down and write.  I know that other people do, but as much as I want to be able to plan to write and write and write, if I don’t have some sort of inspiration, my writing is going to fall flat.  For example, I’ve been writing Acceptance since late December/early January, with the last update being in mid-January, and I’m just now completing chapter three and beginning to edit.  I knew where I was going with it, but I wasn’t quite sure how to get there until I had a sudden jolt of inspiration.  That’s how most of my writing has gone, really, and it might not work for everyone, but it works for me.  I also am lucky that I don’t have the pressure of this being my occupation.  It isn’t something I’m paid to do, so I don’t have time pressures or demands that soemthing be publisehd by a certain date.  I can afford the luxury of taking my time and figuring out how I want to explain a character’s emotional state by the circumstances surrounding them.

Next Monday (9th June)

My good friend Heather will be answering these questions! Look forward to her post then!

 
 

Not made for this world

I know that I’m not alone in the feeling that I don’t really belong in this world.  This is a somewhat “no duh” sort of statement – most autistic people, I imagine, feel that way at some time or another.  

I feel like so many times, I try so very hard, harder than my allistic/NT counterparts.  I expend so much energy, I work so hard and try and do so much just so that I can rejoice in little victories.  

I have done something recently that I don’t think I ever expected to do.  I’ve been promoted to manager of the fast food restaurant where I work.  This is fantastic and I’m so grateful that they’re recognizing how hard I work to make every guest’s experience a good one, and I don’t balk at hard work, and I’m always there to pick up any shifts that they need me to.  

The problem is that I’m extremely nervous about this change.  Not only am I going to be in a more fast-paced part of the store, but my responsibilities will be increased and I won’t always have a script to rely on.  Because let’s be real.  You screw up someone’s order at the drive thru, and you have a script to fix it.  Your interactions with a customer are very minimal and they pretty much rely on a formula.  Greet the customer, take their order, thank them.  Greet them when they get to your window, take their payment, thank them, and send them to the next window to retrieve their order.  Of course there’s some variance here, and some of them make little comments and jokes and I never know how to fully respond to those, but overall, it’s pretty much the same thing every day.

But now? Now I will have people to manage, and added responsibilities and what if I don’t understand something is a joke? And one of the management training e-learning courses mentioned that only 7% of what is communicated is through words only, and that body language/facial expressions/eye contact is important and this makes me want to cry in frustration.  Will I piss off someone and be reported as “rude” (which is grounds for immediate termination)? Do I dare bring up the fact that I’m autistic with my employer, which though it isn’t a secret (it’s in my employment paperwork from my new hire orientation) isn’t exactly something I have been completely open about at work?

I don’t know.  Will I be able to manage the politics within the management that currently exists? Will I be accepted as one of them or will I be an outcast like I usually am? I’m not sure.  I want to do well, because I love my job.  I know it’s against the stereotype of autistic people, but gosh, I really do love people.  I love making them happy.  I know that our food is not the best health-wise, but I want to make people happy by giving them at least good quality food, even if its healthfulness is in question.   

It’s mostly just nerves.  Of the three people becoming manager this month, I’ve been there for years less than the others.  So I know that I’ve shown that I can do my job and do it well, and they’ve taken notice.  I am further in my training (in the e-learning modules) than the others, as far as I can tell.  I am excited about this job, and I want to do well.  Some would say that it’s just nerves, but I know that isn’t the case.  I have legitimate concerns because of the way I am and the way I’ve been since the day I was born.  Perhaps if I had more social skills training taught by other autistics, I’d know how to properly form my face so it doesn’t look like I’m either overly enthusiastic and making fun of someone or completely flat and disinterested.  

I guess in the end, I’ll find out how autistic and disability friendly my employer really is.  

I’m grateful for the opportunity – I just hope that I have the chance to prove myself.

 
3 Comments

Posted by on April 29, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

It’s World Autism Day again

Today is World Autism Day.  It seems like only yesterday that it was last year’s World Autism Day. And yet, here we are again.

This day is always difficult for me, because while on the one hand, I want to say “yes! Let’s focus on autism and how it affects us!”, I just can’t, because of who is behind this campaign. Autism Speaks is the primary organization behind autism awareness, especially in the United States.  I cannot condone their message of fear and dehumanization.  I cannot sit back and be passive.

When I see that blue puzzle piece, or one of those Autism Speaks arm bands/bracelets, something within me dies.  Something makes me feel ill and shaky, and I wish that I didn’t have such a visceral reaction to a symbol like this.  But this is my blog, and I’m an honest person, and yes, Ms. clothing store manager, every time you hand me your Autism Speaks Chase card, I have to curb my desire to just promo off your entire meal so that Autism Speaks doesn’t receive a cent.  

I was a naive person for a long time.  I believed that most people were good and didn’t wish to cause any harm. I still think in some ways that is true, but not meaning to do harm and actively working to not cause harm are two different things.  When a child is diagnosed with autism, one of the first resources that medical professionals usually hook parents up with is Autism Speaks.  So being clueless and not understanding the harm is really not something I’m going to be angry about.  However, if an autistic person (or ally) says “hey, Autism Speaks is bad because of these reasons” and you still insist that we have to do something to prove it, well, I know that I can’t count on you to be my ally, and you are certainly causing harm.

There are dozens of companies, celebrities, and even philanthropic associations that support Autism Speaks.  They mean well, but they consistently ignore autistic voices.  I had a rather enlightening interaction just today with Ed Asner, and it made me incredibly sad and frustrated that someone who has the ability to do so much good chooses instead to complain about autistic people making too much of a fuss about Autism Speaks.  Last year, I was accused of being a troll by William Shatner’s Twitter followers because I tweeted the same message to half a dozen celebrities, who were taking part in a very specific venture with Autism Speaks.  It’s nothing new, but it’s frustrating that it seems like people only care about supporting “autism awareness” when it doesn’t cost them anything.  I don’t mean financially.  I mean, “hey, look, I did a good thing – I support Autism, so there’s my good deed for the day and my pat on the back.”  

I want real support. I don’t want this feel good “support” that does nothing to help me, my kids, or anyone else who shares my diagnosis.  What good does it do to be aware that autism exists? Most people are aware, but many people still call autistic kids brats, don’t understand what autism actually entails, and even parents of autistic kids still attribute things that are not autism to autism (like seizures, gastrointestinal issues, etc.).  

So for World Autism Day, what I’d really like is acceptance and understanding.  I want people to understand that I am a person, I am an autistic person, and no, I don’t need that part of me erased.  I don’t need a cure, and autism didn’t kidnap the allistic child that I would have been.  I didn’t destroy my parents’ marriage.  I didn’t ruin my family’s lives.  

 
9 Comments

Posted by on April 3, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

What is success?

I will write a post soon about Autism Speaks and how now is the prime time to talk to their corporate partners about withdrawing their support.  That’s something that I’ll focus on after this weekend is over, and in the meantime, if you’re reading this, please feel free to sign the petition here, and visit the webpage here

But today I need to write about something that’s been bothering me for the past few months, and something that I think a lot of non-neurotypical people, whether they’re autistic or not, will understand.  

And that is NT standards when it comes to career choice and their terms of “success”.

I work at the biggest fast food chain in the world.  I worked there for a full seven months and received a promotion and a raise.  I now make above minimum wage, but I don’t make good money by any stretch of the imagination.  I celebrated the day that my pay was more than $8.00 an hour.

A little bit of background – I am in my early 30s, married, with two children.  I have a bachelor’s degree in English, and I have worked in a variety of fields, from education to retail to food service to childcare.  I have done many different things, but when it came time to reenter the workforce after being a stay at home parent for three years, I chose what most people see as a simple job (“one that even a monkey could do” is how many people describe it) because it’s something I knew I could excel at, and the hours were do-able with two children in school.

But it is anything but simple for me.  

Oh, it’s not that the job is hard in and of itself.  I work in the drive thru, mostly in the early morning hours, which means that I make coffee, take orders, and cash out people’s orders before they reach the second drive thru window and receive their order.  At its essence, all I need to do is listen to people’s orders and press the buttons on the touch screen monitor which communicates the customer’s order to the people working on the grill.  

It’s also not very stressful socially, on the surface.  My social interaction with people is just seconds long.  I smile, ask if I can take their order, thank them, and greet them again, tell them their total, take their money, make change, and thank them again.  It’s a simple formula, and it’s why this works so well for me as an autistic person – because scripts are easy.

The problem is that many times, I’m scheduled for ten hours of this.  Not only is that physically demanding to be on my feet for that length of time (and yes, it is), but it’s socially demanding in a way that makes my brain feel fuzzy by about the 7th hour of work.  

Multitasking is something I’ve had to learn, and I’m still not entirely good at it.  Sometimes, customers at the window are angry that I’m too slow because I’m taking an order and I can’t listen to two people talk at once (one through my headset and one at my window) and people over the headset are angry because I’ve asked them to repeat their order.  

Add to that the amazing amounts of noise that permeate the building, as well as the noise that comes onto my headset with every freaking customer (it’s a beep, a loud, horrible beep) as well as any residual noise outside (sirens, the noise of a truck or car running when it’s entirely too old) and I’m skating on the edge of a shutdown or a meltdown every single afternoon/evening.

This doesn’t even touch on the fact that I often have to endure racist and ableist comments from managers and other employees, some even to my face because surprise! Many people haven’t figured out that I’m autistic, even though it’s in my employment papers.  

Last week, I attended an event with my general manager at the local Ronald McDonald House (which, when we’re talking about charities, is definitely an organization that you should support – the money funds a place to stay for parents and other family members when they have a very ill child in the hospital).  I love doing these events, the Share-A-Meal, where a group of us from our store, which includes customers, management, employees and our families and we cook a meal to share with very scared, very stressed, very tired family members of sick children.  This time, we shared a holiday meal, and I enjoyed every last moment.  The owner of our franchise was even there, and I frosted cupcakes with him, which was kind of a fun thing to do.

The drive on the way over made my heart sink, though.  She was discussing another employee’s conversation earlier in the day, a quite young employee (in his early 20s, if not younger), and how he had been discussing wanting to have children.  I don’t remember her exact words, but she basically insinuated that people like him should never have children.  When she said “people like him”, what she meant was “developmentally or learning disabled”, as this person has a diagnosis of ADHD (and probably, from my interactions, has other disabilities that maybe resonate with me a little bit  – I won’t ever go as far as to diagnose someone, but he pings on my autism radar pretty hard).  She meant people like me.  

I hear the “r” word from every employee except two – one of whom is autistic like me and one of whom has a diagnosis of Tourette’s.  I am grateful to work with a few people who understand the impact of that word, who understand what it feels like to hear that and be brought back to your childhood all in a second.  

I had to ask advice the other day from friends near and far about how to respond to something at work, and this is part of the problem with Autism Speaks, just so we’re clear.  There is a woman who comes through the drive thru on at least a biweekly basis.  She’s a regular because she is the store manager of one of the retail stores up the road from us.  She pays every single time with a Chase credit card that uses this program, and is embossed with Autism Speaks’ logo. The first time she saw my ASAN bracelet, she wrinkled her nose at it.  Now we just pretend we don’t see each other’s logo, but I regularly have to take a moment to calm my heart rate when I swipe her card.  The first few times, I did actually have to find a way to step away for a moment and take deep breaths because I was on the edge of a panic attack.  The thought that my hand was responsible for swiping that card and giving that small percentage to Autism Speaks sickened me.  

These are things I deal with often.

That doesn’t even touch on the real topic of this post, which was supposed to be about NT standards.  Here’s the thing – as much as I want to have what is in NT people’s eyes, a successful career, I can’t guarantee that is going to happen.  85% of disabled people are unemployed or underemployed.  I fit the latter category, I believe, as I work in a field that I am technically overqualified for.  1 in 3 autistic young people have never had a job. I face some serious roadblocks to being able to obtain and keep a job that pays enough for me to live off of.  

Because of the fact that I work at the only fast food restaurant within walking distance of my alma mater, I regularly encounter teachers and administrators who were once my teachers and administrators, as well as former classmates who work there now.  One of these people regularly gives me a look that says “I’m disappointed in you.  I expected so much more.”  Every single time, I want to cry.  I have a very difficult time taking her money because I want to explain.  I want to say “you taught me.  You know my weaknesses and my strengths.  Going to college doesn’t change those things.”  But that is what it is to be able bodied, and privileged, and to have graduated from the same sort of school you teach at, which is a private Christian school.  Being all of those things means that you don’t have to think about the difficulties of life, that we live in a society that doesn’t allow for autistic people to define our own success.  It means that if you’re disabled, you have to do more.  You have to prove that you’re as good, if not better than your NT peers.  

I can’t do that.  And in her eyes, that makes me a failure.  Never mind that I have a college degree that in many ways, I can’t use.  Never mind that as much as I’d love to go back to being an educator, I just can’t do it because I often lose my train of thought and am easily manipulated (by 12 year olds!).  

This isn’t a pity party.  I’m not feeling sorry for myself.  I simply know that in the society in which I live, I cannot do exactly what I want and pay the bills.  I know that I will have difficulty selling myself in an interview.  I will have difficulty navigating social situations.  I may not dress in a way that people consider appropriate for my age. Many people assume I’m far younger than I am because sensory-wise, I prefer a tshirt and jeans to a dress and high heels. 

Maybe one day, I’ll live in a society where being autistic and employed means something different for me.  I hope that by the time my children reach adulthood, they have far more opportunities to shine.

 
1 Comment

Posted by on December 6, 2013 in Uncategorized

 
 
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