“#AutisticRave: Life after Diagnosis. Joy… and Horror.

"Approaching Owensburg," an original digital illustration. A diptych of the same country road, dawn & dusk. In left panel, a fenced in field on left, across a country road, a large looming oak tree in tones of yellow, rose, brown & black. In right panel, the same scene reveresed, in tones of blue, green, black and brown.
“Approaching Owensburg,” an original digital illustration. A diptych of the same country road, dawn & dusk.

#AutisticRave: Group Processing Disorder. It's a Thing. #AutisticAF Out Loud

  1. #AutisticRave: Group Processing Disorder. It's a Thing.
  2. Imaginary Friends? This Autistic Kid's Bestie… Dissociation, Pt 1
  3. #AutisticRave: Life after Diagnosis: Joy… and Horror.
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EPISODE

I’m an #AutisticElder. Late diagnosed… at 63.

Wanna know what autistic life looks like at 70?

Joy… and horror.

Joy. Cuz every DAY since diagnosis gets easier. Less energy spent masking. More comfort allowing myself to stim. A thousand things.

I learned em all by listening to other adult autistic voices… writers, podcasters, videocasters, #actuallyautistic folks on Twitter, Facebook… and two established resources I’ve come to trust.

Article continues below…

NOTE: Some autistic & ADHD folks process reading better, some listening… some both at once. So I include a transcript, podcast, and “pretty” captioned video below. #InclusionMatters.

Season 2, Episode 13: Push ▶️ to Listen, 3 dots at right to download.
Complete podcast, with closed captions to aid auditory processing.

But horror too.

You see… I can’t communicate. Without great effort.

And always pain. Either for me… or someone else.

I’ve spent a life just one poor word choice away from condemendation.

One missed social cue away from losing family, friends, wives…

I shed friends like tears.

What’s weird…? All the effort I put into masking? Was always to take of others. To not disappoint them. Hurt them. Drive them away…

Rehearsing every statement. Trying to keep status in mind. Carefully considering every tone of voice, gesture, facial expression… before opening my mouth.

NOT just with average citizens. Pros too. Every therapist, doctor, pastor & guru… protecting THEIR egos… as I looked for help with my pain.

Even within the autistic community… where so many of us share similar feelings.

And ultimatley ALWAYS failing.

Cuz my autistic brain went directly from point A to point B once too often… with too much of my truth. Without carefully sidestepping all the cracks in the sidewalk. And breaking relationships.

But at 70… in all honesty, there’s a not a human on earth I can be totallly myself with, seek help from… love … and not fuck up.

I can honestly say, the rest of my life has become a source of joy.

But for this final, oldest challenge? I don’t have a personal solution.

Maybe 7 decades trying to survive autistic is too long to overcome this one. Maybe I’da been happier as a monk taking the vow of silence.

I’ll never know.

I only know I’m doing my best to make this not true for the next generation.

I want better for you.

#AutisticRave: Group Processing Disorder. It's a Thing. #AutisticAF Out Loud

  1. #AutisticRave: Group Processing Disorder. It's a Thing.
  2. Imaginary Friends? This Autistic Kid's Bestie… Dissociation, Pt 1
  3. #AutisticRave: Life after Diagnosis: Joy… and Horror.
Subscribe to hear new episodes…
AppleSpotifyPocketCastsAmazon/AlexaAudibleMore Platforms

Support AutisticAF.me here: Paypal · Ko-Fi · Facebook Pay “Johnny Knapp Âû

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2 Comments

  1. Infidel753 says:

    I can barely imagine the strain of being in the situation you describe.

    Unfortunately, not all problems even have solutions. The world isn’t good unless people choose to make it so.

    I hope that it helps you to be able to at least talk about these issues here.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You know it’s weird. I wasn’t truly aware of this til diagnosis. I hid the horror for 6cdecades. With some pretty bizarre mind defenses. From simple denial… to hallucination and dissociation.

      Now… as i describe it to myself… and you… most of the symptoms have cleared up.

      I need to write on the positive side. But without slipping into toxic positivity.

      Infidel753… you remain a guiding light. We think differently about some things.

      But you always bring me light. To see by.

      Liked by 1 person

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