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Taking Away My Autism Would Be Like Removing My Love of Chocolate

I have autism.

And I don’t need a cure for it.

Ignorance does.

Autism is not something I have, it’s something I am. It’s in every emotion I experience, every choice I make and every single thought I have. It’ll affect my choice of job, my taste in clothes, my favorite music and TV shows. If you removed my autism, it would be like removing my blue eyes or my love of chocolate.

I enjoy my job; the people are nice and are always there if I need help with anything, no matter how simple the question may seem. A lot of people with autism find social skills quite tricky — I tend to talk about things that interest me and hope the other person enjoys what I have to say, but I don’t need to talk about those things. I would love it if the other person spoke about their interests as well.

I play video games.

I meditate.

I sing at open mic nights.

I have a degree in graphic design.

I’m learning Japanese.

You see, people with autism view, hear and feel the world differently to other people. If you have Asperger’s syndrome like me, you have it for life – it’s not an illness or disease and it can’t be cured. Often, people feel autism is a fundamental aspect of their identity. Some things can be hard, but I’m just an ordinary person trying to live my life. I’m grateful I have it, as it’s helped shape me into the person I am today.

I’ve treated the diagnosis of it quite badly and I’ve dismissed it, but I’ve learned now that I need to embrace it.

I have autism.

And I’m proud to have it.

Getty image by Anna Pustynnikova.

Originally published: August 1, 2018
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