April is now Autism Acceptance Month.
According to the World Health Organization, 1 in 270 people have ASD (Autism Spectrum Disorder).
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ASD is the encompassing term used to define those with varying levels of autistic characteristics.
Recently, many autistic people have taken to TikTok to share their own experiences with being diagnosed with ASD.
Emily (@emi2d2) wasn’t diagnosed until her late teenage years and says she initially went to a psychiatrist “because [she] was struggling.”
Unlike Emily, Tim (@blackautisticking) has known he was autistic since he was 5 years old. In his video, Tim says that growing up he had some “issues” with his social skills but learned to accept himself thanks to “love and compassion” from his family and friends.
User @autistickfigures says she went undiagnosed with autism until later in life, despite the many signs she displayed as a child, such as being “very particular” about her daily routine and “constantly picking” at her skin.
And @hxris.h, who wasn’t diagnosed with autism until age 16, talked about what it was like being bullied in school as a child before his diagnosis, saying, “Even the teachers used to make fun of me.”
@madsbutt only very recently received an autism diagnosis. Prior to the diagnosis, they always felt like they were “too sensitive” or “bad” or “needed to suck it up.”
Davon (@oneausomemom) wasn’t diagnosed with autism until age 30 and is now raising a neurodivergent daughter as well.
@eizawolfe shared the difficult path she had to take for her to receive an autism diagnosis. Because her insurance wouldn’t cover the diagnosis, she ended up going through Embrace ASD, an outside clinic.
Natalie-Ann (@tomboy_natzz) said they “would spend all day screaming” as a child and was diagnosed with autism at 2 years old.
Some videos, like this one from @kerrymagro, focus on all the ways people can overcome society’s expectations of autistic individuals. He explains how his childhood development may have felt delayed but he quickly accelerated later in life and became an author at only 25.
So in light of National Autism Awareness Month, keep in mind you never know what another person is going through!
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