Discover and read the best of Twitter Threads about #AutisticElders

Most recents (9)

To someone realising they may be autistic as an adult, and feeling overwhelmed by it.
Please don’t be alarmed. In spite of nearly everything you read about autism being negative there are many positive aspects.
And, most importantly, it’s part of what makes you ‘you’.
It’s nearly three years since my own very late diagnosis.
I remember vividly the moment when I fist realised.
I was reading an email from a former colleague who’d just found out she was autistic.
It really felt like my heart stopped for a moment.
This was something momentous.
I knew that discovering I was autistic meant my world would change forever in ways I could not anticipate.
And it was hard to begin with.
Revisiting past events made me burn with shame, embarrassment, anger and indignation.
It all made sense, why hadn’t it been obvious before?
Read 22 tweets
Why I’m proud to be autistic.
I’m proud to be autistic because it means I’ve rejected the narrow, prejudiced, pejorative definition of autism most people subscribe to.
I’m proud to be autistic because I’ve accepted the parts of myself that are different to what society expects of me.
I’m not denying my true identity to appease other people any more.
I’m proud to be autistic because of what it took me to get here.
A raw, painful retrospective exploration of six decades of my life.
It would have been easier to let things lie.
But I sought the truth.
Read 20 tweets

My A-Z of autism


A personal #ActuallyAutistic

A is for ‘autistic’, how I prefer to be described.

If you want to argue this point you’re not being ‘aware’, ‘accepting’ or an ‘ally’.

Using my preferred terminology is a way of asserting myself.

The fact other people feel entitled to ignore autistic preferences and perspectives has a lot to do with ‘ableism’.

There’s an assumption that we lack insight or competence simply because we’re autistic.

We get spoken over a lot, so it’s not surprising that we get annoyed.

We risk being unfairly labelled ‘angry’ or ‘aggressive’.

This happens in research studies, and in everyday life.

It’s partly to do with our direct communication style.

It’s also the result of our autistic needs being unmet, and this being seen as an ‘attitude problem’.

Read 30 tweets

Twelve things about discovering you’re autistic when you’re over 50.

#1 Most of us have more life behind us than ahead of us. We may feel a deep sense of sadness about our ‘lost’ years. Or we may not.


#2 We weren’t recognised as autistic earlier in life so it may not be obvious from the outside. Others may doubt us.

We may doubt ourselves, because we don’t fit the usual autism stereotypes. Or we may feel at one with our autistic identity right from the start.

#3 We may experience an existential crisis when we realise we’re not who we thought we were.

Or we may feel a huge sense of relief at discovering our self is more real than we ever knew.

Read 12 tweets
People sometimes ask me if it was worth getting an autism diagnosis so late in life.
Two years on I’m convinced it was, and this is why.
Two and a half years ago I was in despair. My much loved dog was dying of heart disease. I was doing multiple part-time jobs. Two of my managers were bullying me. My life seemed to be falling apart, but I had no idea why.
The breakdown I had before my autism diagnosis was like a slow speed car crash. It was as if the engine cut out and I drifted to the side of the road. When I tried to get going again there was no spark, nothing. I didn’t know it at the time but this was #autistic #burnout
Read 23 tweets
Paper 32 of 2020! I'm back!

'When my autism broke': a qualitative study spotlighting autistic voices on menopuase (2020) Moseley, Bruce & Turner-Cobb, Autism

Picking up this paper in response to a Twitter chat yesterday

#Autism #Menopause #AutisticElders #AutisticWomen

Onset of menstruation can be very difficult for aut women, but this is first paper looking at onset of menopause. 7 aut ppl assigned female at birth (AFAB) took part in online focus group, age 49-63. Found lack of knowledge, impact on masking, and need for support
Lit Review

Autistic women are historically under-researched and their experiences under-represented

Esp lack of lifespan work, which is important as being bio female carries specific health events and risks, esp around reproductive trajectories

#Autism #Menopause #WeeklyPapers
Read 29 tweets
Paper 20 of 2020!

Autism in Later Life: what is known and what is needed? 2020, Sonido, Arnold, Higgins & Hwang, Current Developmental Disorders Reports

This is a review of work with #AutisticElders covering a wide range of areas

#WeeklyPapers #Autism

Review of literature with autistic over-50s between 2010 and 2019, as we know little about impact of aging among autistic people

Find high rates of co-occurring conditions, often complex. Compounded by low employment, healthcare access issues, and relationship issues
Autism is a lifelong condition, but nearly all work focusses on children and adolescents, some early adulthood.

All adults experience decline in health and abilities as they age, but we don't know if/how this differs for those on the spectrum

#WeeklyPapers #AutisticElders
Read 20 tweets
A thread on being diagnosed as #ActuallyAutistic before most people knew that #AllAutistics existed.
I’m 50 next year.
I was diagnosed aged 13.
36 years ago.
Many autistics my age are only recently diagnosed. How have our lives differed?...1/13
...At least I’ve known as an adult WHY I was different to others. I didn’t have their doubt, that feeling of being an alien ALONE on this planet – I knew there were others like me, even if it took me well over a decade to meet any...2/13
...I still had to mask though. I couldn’t TELL anyone about my #autism because until recently they didn’t know what it meant. If they knew anything of autism it was usually down to Rain Man or some tragedy story on the news. People like me who...3/13
Read 14 tweets
The MYTH of #HighFunctioningAutism

(sorry, long thread; also about #ABA, but PLEASE try to read it!)

For skeptics who believe an #Autistic with a job or a profession or a child or a relationship leads a life similar to a #Neurotypical (#Allistic), please read this./1
Also, to #AutismParents wanting an #Autistic child to grow up looking & acting “normal” & considering #ABA, please read on.

This is a 2-hour snapshot from my fairly functional day as an #ActuallyAutistic, outwardly very “successful” #Neurotypical-appearing health professional./2
The following represents a particularly SERENE 2-hour slice of my day, a lot less harrowing than the rest of it.

In other words, this is #AutisticMasking at its LEAST taxing./3
Read 19 tweets

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