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Autism Acceptance Month April 2020

Happy Autism Acceptance month y'all! 😁 


I thought I'd use this as a chance to kick-start a conversation promoting acceptance and appreciation! Anyone else can throw questions in too, but here's some to start with:


For all the autistic users out there, if you're comfortable sharing, what's your favourite thing about being autistic?


For friends and loved ones of autistic people, what are some things you appreciate about them?


Some of my favourite things about being autistic and what that means for me: I have a strong moral compass and sense of justice. I have a very systematic and logical approach to learning and communicating (which means provided I have the chance, I'm very thorough when I'm trying to understand or express something). When I discover something I'm passionate about it's like finding another home that I can go to and find joy, peace and rejuvenation whenever I experience it.


Re: Autism Acceptance Month April 2020

@hellofriend damn, you beat me to it! Smiley Tongue


My favorite thing would have to be stimming. So. Much. Fun.

When I get my bedroom finished the whole thing is just going to be one big stim toy I swear.


Also special interests. My current one is fish. They're AMAZING.


One thing that I appreciate about other autistic people is the acceptance and feeling of community.

I'd never known how it felt to belong like that until I was diagnosed and found people online.


Another question I'd like to throw in for autistics:

What's your favorite stim?


Mine are visual stims, specifically ones involving rainbows and/ or sparkles. 


Re: Autism Acceptance Month April 2020

Great thread @hellofriend


Re: Autism Acceptance Month April 2020

Good question @Tiny_leaf ! I have a lot of stims, probably my favourite for a while is echolalia, particularly with the phrase 'bompa lompa, stompa clompa'. I enjoy saying it in a rhythmic way, often with clicking noises between lompa and stompa, often with a particular walk/dance that goes with it. I only do it at home though because I don't trust the rest of the world to be accepting... Sometimes my husband and I will call/repeat it at each other in different tones ('bompa?' 'lompa'? 'STOMPA!' 'CLOMPA!')


And I forgot to say before, I love hearing other autistic people talk about their special interests! There's often so much contagious joy and passion, and/or a wealth of information. 


Re: Autism Acceptance Month April 2020

@hellofriend That sounds like heaps of fun!

My favorite verbal stim would have to be "meep!!"


Re: Autism Acceptance Month April 2020

I used to use that one a lot too @Tiny_leaf, such a fun sound!


Another couple of questions I've just thought of for anyone that's interested:


Where does your understanding of autism come from?


Are there any resources you've come across that are helpful for developing a deeper understanding, acceptance and appreciation of autism that you can share here?


(Also quick question for mods- are there any types of resources it's not ok to share here?)


Re: Autism Acceptance Month April 2020

Hmmm, @hellofriend, I can't think of any that wouldn't be okay from the type of my head. I guess as long as people don't share anything that might be against the guidelines, then it is okay.


Re: Autism Acceptance Month April 2020

There's a website called Autistic Hoya which goes over some more political stuff (though there's a pasta recipie on there as well for some reason.


Also Stimtastic. They sell stim toys.

Including a sparkly weighted stingray.


My understanding of it comes from other autistic people and the neurodiversity movement in general.

The whole neurodiversity thing has been really important for me to accept and celebrate myself as autistic.


Re: Autism Acceptance Month April 2020

Cool thread idea @hellofriend!
You were so close @Tiny_leaf!

I’m not actually autistic, but I do have some strong autistic traits. Like Tiny_leaf, Stimming is probably the best part about it! I have a mouth sensory problem, where I will just chew on my pencils and pens until the ends are broken. Which isn’t very safe, considering plastic pens are sharp when broken, so I have a chewy necklace pendant!
I also want to get some chewy beads, so I can put them on the ends of my hoodie strings!

haha, that ties in with the first question, and @Tiny_leaf’s question! Smiley Tongue

I also love being a form of autistic person, because I’m also a very just person. I’m also very logical, despite having a wild imagination.

I appreciate all the people with autistic needs and traits, but I’ve never really met anyone who’s like me, with mild traits but no diagnosis. But we all have one unique thing that keeps us together, and that is being unique from others!

Re: Autism Acceptance Month April 2020

My understandings of autism used to be quite confused and vague, and based on snippets I picked up on from other people expressing their own vague understandings/the media/ limited observations.


Then aged 22 I was introduced to the concept of neurodiversity and now that's the framework I use to understand it. Which as @Tiny_leaf brought it up too makes me think I should add the question:


What is your understanding of the term 'neurodiversity', and how does it relate to autism?


I won't give an answer to that one just yet though, I'm getting distracted 😛


I followed a lot of public autistic self advocacy pages on Facebook from the neurodiversity movement, and hearing the experiences and insights of a broad range of autistic people helped me develop my understanding of what autism is (and also issues faced by the community). There were also so many overlaps with my experiences and story that it sparked the beginning me realising I'm autistic too, and now my understanding of autism is also informed by my own experience of being autistic.


I'm on my phone so it's too hard to find all the links but here's some pages I follow: Spectrumy. Autistic, Typing. Autistic Zebra. Neurowonderful. Hvppy Hands. I Am Autistic. Neurobeautiful. Autistic Grandma. Fierce Autie. Neurodivergent Rebel. Neurodivergent Stitch. AUsome Ireland.


And here's a link to a great YouTube series covering a lot of information about autism in a really well organised way: