Blog posts, musings, and thoughts on life in general

Many people are under the impression that autism exists on a linear spectrum, going from not-at-all-autistic to extremely-autistic (“Oh we’re all a bit on the spectrum, aren’t we?!!”). 

Autistic people are given labels that put us on a scale from ‘low’ to ‘high’ functioning. Most autistics I know aren’t that interested in the idea of lining ourselves up in order of who is the ‘most’ autistic (much as we may enjoy a nice orderly line) so effectively these labels are just a shorthand for professionals. This idea of graduated difficulties can be useful in some situations, and is essential under a medical model - for example an A&E nurse responsible for triaging patients needs to know that a broken leg is more severe than a sprained ankle. However, is it really appropriate to apply the same kind of scale to something that is simply a difference in how we are wired? Is there a risk that the use of functioning labels could mean people who are seen as ‘high functioning’ have their struggles dismissed or ignored, and people who are ‘low functioning’ are presumed incompetent and unable to communicate, when that may not actually be the case?

I set out writing this post with the intention to reflect on the last 14 months or so since my autism diagnosis; however I’ve found a lot more to reflect about than I had expected(!) so this is going to end up as a series of posts, each with a particular theme. (Or more likely, it will be one post and then get forgotten.) This particular post is about how my diagnosis has helped me to manage the social interactions in my life, and reframe some of the negative beliefs I held about myself as a person.

Since being diagnosed with autism just over a year ago, I’ve been fairly open about it, both in my online life and my ‘real’ one. I feel the need to talk about it in a way that I never have with sexuality, mental health, or other aspects of my personality. Autism has become part of my identity.  

I know I say this every month, but wow.. June already. This monthly link up is definitely a way of marking the passing of the year! For those who have just gone back to school after half term - congratulations! I hope you can take a bit of a break, before we have to knuckle down for the big summer holidays!

This month’s photo is sleepy Charlie. Now the weather is a bit warmer the cats seem to spend all day curled up snoozing, the lucky things!

Scroll down for some lovely new blogs for you to read: please remember to comment on and share any blogs you like! Click on the blue ‘Click here to enter’ link at the bottom to add your own post.

Don’t forget to tweet me when you’ve added a post, so I know there’s something new to read and share!

I’ve just added my blog post [YOUR POST NAME GOES HERE] to @folkycat’s Adoption Blog link up. You can add yours too! Click to Tweet

Oh my word, how did we get to May already?! May Day is a big celebration round where we live, and this year Tickle insisted on dressing up in a Morris shirt, like his Morris Dancer of a dad! It was very sweet, and very funny - certainly cheered me up as we were getting up at 5am!

Blogging has been really cathartic for me over the years, and if you haven’t done it before I’d recommend giving it a try. When I first joined the online adoption community the blog link ups were my lifeline in to meeting other people in the same situation - I'd love your help sharing this post so that more people can find the help and community they need!

Scroll down for some lovely new blogs for you to read: please remember to comment on and share any blogs you like! Click on the blue ‘Click here to enter’ link at the bottom to add your own post.

Don’t forget to tweet me when you’ve added a post, so I know there’s something new to read and share!

I’ve just added my blog post [YOUR POST NAME GOES HERE] to @folkycat’s Adoption Blog link up. You can add yours too! Click to Tweet

This is something that’s been on my mind for a while, and I’ve really wanted to sit down and get my thoughts together on it. When I first heard about the body-mind disconnect that is experienced by some autistic people, it all sounded a bit strange - but gradually I started to realise that it explained a lot of things that I’d been unable to fully articulate about my relationship with my body. 

Ever since I was a child I’ve struggled to get my body to do what I want it to do, to feel how I think it should feel, and to look how society deems an attractive body should look like. I’ve always blamed it on being overweight, and that definitely contributes to many of my issues, but it doesn’t quite tell the whole story.

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Now available to order:
AAMA CD - a 14 track CD of songs written especially for adoptive, foster, and special needs families.
AAMA the book - an accompanying book explaining the science behind the music, and how to turn these songs from a bit of silly fun to a useful tool for supporting your child’s communication and development

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