I was professionally validated as autistic at age 31. I spent most of my life camouflaging myself among my peers and wearing a neurotypical mask. I never felt entirely comfortable in myself, and always felt like I was "going through the motions". Discovering that Asperger Syndrome could be the explanation behind everything, I started to be kinder to myself and #takethemaskoff , but others didn't seem to understand, so I'd end up masking more... which led to more cognitive exhaustion, which led to the Autistic Burnout. Being tired all the time when you never used to be, being averse to participating in activities you once enjoyed, being much more sensory sensitive and less tolerant of overload... Some mistake it for depression or anxiety, but it can't be "fixed" with medication or counselling. It's a slow road to recovery, but by recognising your limits and not punishing yourself when you need to prioritise self-care, it will help you bit by bit.

#actuallyautistic #autismspectrumcondition #ThisIsMyStory

(I'm only using #Autism to link this entry, but we are not "disordered", we are #neurodiverse .)