Announcement time!!!

I have decided this weekend that I will be writing a story about a man with autism and how each year has affected him from childhood and the announcement he was diagnosed as having autism, till the adult years with all the obstacles ossociated with normal day to day lives. The book is going to be called Andy’s autism journey. I want to based the book on some of my experiences as well as hearing your experiences on autism so the readers can get more of an insight to what the condition is all about. The writing will be as Andy sees it so it will be half diary, half viewpoint into his mind. Tell us your experiences with autism, any life changing situation and I can use them to complete the story even further. I’m very excited to get started on the writing, please do comment, share this to as many people as possible and together we can make this story a huge success πŸ˜ƒ

34 thoughts on “Announcement time!!!”

  1. I have over 5 decades experience of being on the autism spectrum, but only a month of knowing the name of my constant companion. The discovery of its name was like a gigantic fireworks show. The single firecracker was a 12 year old autistic girl who I observed that life-changing day of showing behavior I was as familiar with as breathing. I wish I could share with her my story and what an important part she had in it. Due to her lack of verbal skills, I can’t have a back and forth conversation with her. I can, though, when I am subbing in her class, give her tender loving care and when she wants one, a big hug.

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  2. I think it’s a great idea to highlight the struggles of autism. I actually do know an Andy with autism. It’s difficult for him to explain autism because it’s you and you don’t know how you’d feel differently if you weren’t autistic. He doesn’t like buses much though, if they are too busy and crowded he won’t get on and instead walk for an hour to work. He’s a very high functioning autistic person so he has a great awareness of feelings and expression of emotions. He has learned to respond appropriately in situations, you know like if something sad happens he knows he is supposed to look sad he just probably doesn’t actually feel sad. I asked him once how something like love fitted into his world and he said for him it was more like a sense of loyalty. he’d do things for people he felt loyal to rather than those he necessarily loved. It was quite a difficult conversation to have because he is autistic and I’m not so we both found it tricky to explain what our mental worlds are.
    Hope this helps :/

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    1. Relationships with autism are a thing I’ve finally committed myself to navigating: they feel like love for a while, and after that they start to feel like routine (at best) or obligation (at worst). Guilt settles in when you feel like you’re not giving as much as you’re getting, and then you try to bolt. Having the double-whammy of autism with depression, the thing I’ve tried to really focus on is to not believe everything I think. For myself, I’m still looking for the silver lining, I hope your Andy has had the time to step back and find his.

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  3. For me, all I knew for a long long time, a major part of my life was that I was different. Only after i noticed my son being different I started doing my research and got a confirmation of what I’ve been going through only in September.

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  4. I do not have autism but I do work in mental health. I absolutely love your idea. πŸ™‚ As someone who is always trying to see things from the perspective of the people I’m trying to help, I deeply appreciate books written by individuals with different experiences of the world (“Me, Myself, and Them” comes to mind – written by a man with schizophrenia). I wish you the best in your writing journey!

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  5. Thanks for what you are doing David. I worked as a special ed substitute teacher for three years and saw the spectrum working with children and adults with mild to severe autism. It was a while ago but an experience I will never forget. I remember it was like a puzzle to figure each individual out and find what worked for them. Their schedule, their reaction to stimulii. I enjoyed working with them very much although there were some times when they would get out of control and others would step in because I was only the substitute. Good luck anyway. Can’t wait to read it.

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  6. What a wonderful idea! My journey with autism began when my children were diagnosed more than eight years ago. As I began to see things through the beautiful kaleidoscope they view the world through, I saw myself more and more. Finally, this past year, I definitively identified myself on the spectrum as well. And so many pieces long fragmented in me are coming together.

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  7. I have autism, ADHD and dyslexia (plus other others that may or may not be related). The diagnoses have all come at different times, including as recent as yesterday. I have spent my whole life being different, sometimes hating it and myself, other times loving it. I have been asked many times, what is it like to be autistic. The answer is always ‘normal’. I don’t know anything else. I have no friends but a load of acquaintances. Time and time again I have watched people my age, develop in a way that I just don’t seem to and then leave me totally behind for me to then excel in something else that they can’t imagine. Though I have speech, I find it almost impossible to express myself and the easiest way to describe my emotions is under developed or child like. Sensory overload, the hyper energy and lack of sleep are a curse. I can switch between appearing to function to loosing all verbal communication, rocking and head banging to total shut down. I have support workers who are the only people who actually understand me. And they help me to understand and express myself. I’ve heard them say that its ‘like trying to piece together a jigsaw where you only get pieces that connect every few weeks’. I’ve developed some strategies. I use a red/green reversible wristband to indicate whether something is wrong, even if I am unable to express it verbally. If my support workers see it on red, they know something isn’t right but it could be anything. Fidget and sensory toys help loads (if you couldn’t guess from my blog). I have multiple times suffered from mental health issues, including attempting to take my own life (don’t worry that’s not a current problem before anyone reports it) and to give an idea just what I mean by sensory overload, I hear every little sound at the same intensity as someone talking. There is no filter, no such thing as a background sound and I can hear dog whistles clearly. I’m not able to tolerate touch (from another person), yet seek controlled touch and texture based sensory input

    Yet despite all my difficulties, I am keen to join in, go to work and most importantly do martial arts.

    Equally the triple diagnosis brings with it good things. I have an incredible eye for detail, photographic memory and just enough of a creative streak (thanks dyslexia) that I can combine the need for precision with design. The hyper energy means I don’t tire out in martial arts but the autism means I can keep each one separate and not get muddled up.

    For me my most life changing situation was when I first started to receive support from a support worker. It was the first time in my life, I had someone I could talk to you that understood and accepted me. And I’m hoping my next life changing situation will happen in 2017 and that I’ll get to move out of my parents house.

    Hope it helps.

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