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5 Pieces of Advice Autistic People Wish They Could Have Given Themselves When Newly Diagnosed

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Getting a new diagnosis can come with a myriad of feelings. Sometimes it’s a lightbulb moment, where so many things finally make sense. Other times it’s just daunting, and instead of providing clarity, you’re only left with more questions. While your new diagnosis isn’t the first part of your journey, it is a monumental part with the power to shift and direct how you live your life going forward. After a new diagnosis, you get to grow a relationship not just with your identity, but also with your condition itself. However, this often isn’t something you realize until typically farther along your journey. 

We decided to ask The Mighty’s Neurodiverse Crowd, “If you could tell yourself one thing when you first got diagnosed (self or otherwise) with autism, what would it be?”

It wasn’t you, it was them.

See? You aren’t broken… Your brain is just wired to understand and communicate differently. You will eventually find your people, but you need to find you first, and it’s not being who everyone else thinks you should.” – @Werp 

“All those things you tried to get your cousins into were special interests, and you were hyperfixated on them. They can’t understand your obsession with them, and that’s why they stopped playing with you. It’s not your fault, and you didn’t do anything wrong. You will always find certain things you are into more than anyone you know, and you should never feel guilty about it.” – @Dreadedkitty 

Now you can accept yourself fully.

Congratulations! Now you have permission to quit feeling like a moral miscreant and can quit bowing to the gaslighting by people who claim to know your motives better than you know your own. Now you can focus on things you can change and leave the rest to God. You can quit wallowing in self-reproach and self-loathing. You can have joy!” – @Freee

“Woo, you learned not to trust your instincts or needs because others told you not to think or feel or act ‘that’ way. You learned to survive by fitting in but you don’t fit. You weren’t made to fit. Those corners make you square. You’ll lose yourself if you keep trying to cut off your corners and pretend it’s better to be around. Pretending to know what’s going on, what they meant by that, or that you don’t struggle silently…daily. No more silent struggles! You will learn to trust your own inner voice, who knows your own needs way better than any of the loud, opinionated voices that surround you! …And I love you woo!” –  @Woowoo222 

Go enjoy those special interests.

“‘Ahhh that explains it,’ and, ‘Would you like to hear air traffic control recordings with me.’” – @Fathousewife

Getty image by ljubaphoto

Originally published: June 20, 2022
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