Autism is very often misunderstood by neurotypical people, who lack an intimate understanding of what
it is like to live life on the spectrum. Here are 12 fast facts about autism to get you started on a better
understanding of autism;
1. Autism is a neurological developmental condition
This means for people with autism, their brains develop differently from that of neurotypical people.
They may develop slower than most others in certain cognitive aspects… but also fast in other aspects.
Just like normal people, really.
2. Autism affects every person differently
Seeing how one person on the spectrum acts does not mean they all act that way. Autistic people have
strengths and weaknesses in entirely different areas… just like normal people.
3. Autism is a spectrum (not a linear scale)
This is one of the biggest misconceptions; autistic people are not ‘high’ or ‘low’ functioning, but they are
autistic in different ways, and each have entirely different support needs.
4. Autistic people are different (not less) in 3 main areas
They see the world differently through their special interests, their sensitivity to sensory input means
they feel the world differently, and the way they think and process information means they connect
with the world differently.
5. Autistic people often hide their traits
Autistic people learn from a young age that difference is bad, and so many have learned to hide their
true selves for survival. You might talk to someone who seems neurotypical, and never realize they are
6. You are NOT a little bit Autistic
Possessing some autistic traits does not mean you are a ‘little’ autistic. That’s like saying being sad on
occasion makes you a ‘little’ clinically depressed; it just doesn’t work that way.
7. Autistic people are diverse and don’t conform to stereotypes
The only thing autistic people share is the common experience of being the odd one out. They come in
all shapes, sizes, gender, culture, and professions.
8. Autistic people never grow out of Autism, they simply grow INTO it
Autistic people learn and grow just like everyone else, and are constantly developing ways navigate life.
Just like normal people.
9. Autism is not something to be cured, but a part of their personality.
It is not a disease or a psychological issue. It may often come with co-morbid conditions that require
their own treatment, but it is fundamentally a part of their personality.
10. Autistic people may find certain tasks difficult, but excel at others
Certain everyday tasks may be difficult for an autistic person, but they in turn are capable of feats that
most neurotypical people aren’t.
11. Autistic people wants friends as much as anyone
They just don’t want them at the price of not being allowed to be themselves, or not being able to
pursue their own interests.
12. Being different is not always easy
They often get bullied, picked last, left out of social events, or even asked to leave groups because they
are “not a good fit”. It is not possible for them to “be like everyone else” even if they wanted to, and this
makes them more frustrated.
For a better understanding of Autistic people and how to accommodate their differences, see the video
in the link below;