Something that I am happy to say is Autism is starting to get more and more traction in the public. And something that I am really happy to say is that Women with autism are becoming more talked about.
I have autism. I am also a grown woman.
I was diagnosed with autism at the age of 17 years old. Which you would think would be fairly late of an the age to be diagnosed with autism. As it is usually found between the ages of 2 – 5 years in the majority of cases.
But that is in boys.
I actually think I was diagnosed early in my opinion because I have seen and listen to some don’t get their diagnoses until they were in their 20’s or even 30’s.
Why is this?
This can all be traced back to the very beginning of autism being researched. Now that can be a post in itself. So Just to give an overview of it, when autism was being researched it was done on boys and on boys.
And with that research done on boys only it went on to be used as the base of the tests done to diagnose autism.
And well we now know that girls can and do have autism.
But the thing is that they still use the same test that is targeted to boys. And that makes it that girls and women with autism fall through the cracks.
Another thing is that autistic women have different symptoms that men.
So this leads to women not getting diagnosed with autism. In most case they are either diagnosed with something else or just given nothing.
And something that really gets me is that sometimes these women have obvious symptoms but its just brushed off.
I found out that out first hand when I was a young child and a child psychologist mentioned that I have some of the symptoms of autism and that I might have it.
But it was treated like something just said in passing. As a ‘Huh, that’s weird’ moment. It was never brought up again.
I was actually the person who brought it up years later to my counsellor at the age of 17 after watching some videos on youtube for a psychology project and fell down the rabbit hole a bit. And this led me to a video in the recommended on the sidebar.
This video to be specific.
And what made me click it was because I had never seen autism mentioned in girls before or even really thought about it being a thing that girls have.
And so I watched it. And I found it kind of funny that I related to it so much.
But then I watched more and I found I really related to this. And so it hit me. so i did more research on it.
And then I brought it up to my therapist.
And she said that it fit with what she knew of me and she didn’t know why she didn’t think about it before.
And from there it was a fast track of seeing a bunch of psychologists and being given the diagnoses of High-Functioning Autism (I am definitely going to do a post on the who high and low functioning thing and how it affects how people perceive how you .)
And that right there is one of the biggest reasons that I talk about my autism like this. Because I don’t want autism in women and girls to be a afterthought and a not really known about thing.
I want little girls who have obvious symptoms to be diagnosed and not just given a throwaway comment about how funny it is that they have these symptoms.
And hopefully with more and more people speaking out about their life and experience as autistic women and girls we can get to a point where that is the case.
But for now I will continue to speak on my experiences and ups and downs of living with autism.