For most of my life, I’ve thought something must be ‘wrong’ with me. If it was listed in the DSM, I’ve considered it. I’ve always known I was somehow different. Psychological disorders have been a long time special interest, which has its pros and cons. I was fortunate enough to be formally diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder about a year ago. It’s something that was talked about when I was a child, and that I’d considered as an adult, but a formal diagnosis seemed to snap everything in to place. The puzzle was solved. I even celebrated.
Nothing was or is ‘wrong’ with me. I’m simply a less common neurotype. And, really, who wants to be common? Awesome. I started to make new autistic friends, relate to others more easily,. make my own sensory toys, and more. I couldn’t thank my treatment team enough for finally solving this mystery. I can only laugh now, thinking about all of the things I thought might have been wrong with me. Not that any of them were truly funny.
Some people may consider an autism diagnosis a bad thing. If that is you or a loved one, I encourage you to seek the positives about being autistic and try to make new friends, even if only online. It has had a huge impact on my self-esteem. My therapist reminds me of how much it’s increasing. Speaking of therapists, I also recommend you find a brilliant one. I’ve seen many and finally found the one for me. And no, I don’t have to pay top dollar to see him — he’s at my local mental health clinic. I see autism as something to learn to accept if you don’t, and hopefully learn to be proud about! Good luck to you!