Activism, Autism

Autistic: What I am Not

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I need to start standing up for myself more as an autistic person. I am sick of people who think they know better about how to handle my condition and my life then I do. Just because you “knew a guy” who won the Nobel Prize and was autistic does not mean I should be able to hold down a job at a super market without having a nervous breakdown every week. Everyone tells me what I am capable of without even listening to me about my capacity or my struggles. I often go on about what I am on this blog, what I do, what I think, and what I am capable of. I have decided it is time to stand up for myself and declare what I am not.

I am not “lazy” because I can’t function emotionally or mentally in the general work force.

I am not “weak” because I have a hard time processing emotions and am easily overwhelmed by the emotions of others.

I am not “stupid” because I cannot understand some math concepts and have a hard time with my handwriting and communicating verbally at times

I am not a “child” because I require the emotional support and protection of my family and enjoy being near them and having them in my life

I am not “sad” because I have depression that comes from dealing 24/7 with a brain that does not understand or function well in a world made for neurotypical minds.

I am not a “freak” or a “savant” because I excel at retaining information and discussing my area of expertise.

I am not a “failure” because I could not get through college after 4 years of striving and pain and intense mental focus.

I am not a “recluse” because I prefer to stay at home where I feel most in control and safe.

I am not “anti-social” because I cannot handle large public gatherings and can only handle one or two friends at a time.

I am not what you want or need me to be

I am Autistic and I don’t have to apologize for that to anyone.

So shut up, listen up  have some fries with that Assburger

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20 thoughts on “Autistic: What I am Not

    • nme16 says:

      It is a struggle every day to work against the expectations of a world that does not see your own mind as “legitimate”. I am glad you are helping your daughter along the way. I will mean a lot to her as she grows.

  1. Reblogged this on seventhvoice and commented:
    “I am not a “recluse” because I prefer to stay at home where I feel most in control and safe.
    I am not “anti-social” because I cannot handle large public gatherings and can only handle one or two friends at a time.”
    Brilliant blog post well worth a read.

  2. Pingback: Stop Expecting Me To Apologize For Being Who I Am | seventhvoice

  3. Stephanie says:

    Shared! I relate to this to a massive degree. I personally have never had much issue with reading and writing, but this is something I want everyone to see. I imagined grabing a former friend of my mom by the shirt and making him read the “I am not a child” part.

    • nme16 says:

      Well reading is not a problem for me, thank goodness (I would DIE without my books) but my handwriting is about as bad as a doctor’s haha I wish more people would read this and show it to their loved ones and friends who doubt what they are going through

  4. Matthew says:

    Beautiful post. I hope many people find and read this. I am also on the spectrum. Unfortunately, I was born in the era before anyone knew about autism. As a result, my childhood was a nightmare as even the parents who should have advocated for me assumed I was either “lazy” or “acting out.” My adult years have been a process of letting go of ambitions and goals as I realized how the world was structured to condemn and shut out people like me. Sometimes I wonder if things will change in a generation or so–at this point I don’t hold much hope for things changing in my lifetime.

    • nme16 says:

      I was diagnosed when I was 22 so I also had a lot trouble growing up…luckily my parents were very understanding and supportive. I am so sorry you had the experience you did…we need to work on making the world a better place for people like you and I

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