10 Random Facts About Autism

10 personal facts that I’ve gathered from questions I’ve answered on Quora.

  1. High Functioning Autism doesn’t mean you’re a savant, it means you’re capable of living independently.
  2. We’re not all Math geniuses, there’s plenty of literary and artsy types.
  3. Getting diagnosed as an adult is a thing that happens and it doesn’t mean you don’t actually have it; Autism is a form of neurodivergence and doesn’t just go away if you learn to hide it.
  4. Not all of us are introverts, there’s plenty of extroverted autists, we just tend to be clumsier about it.
  5. Plenty of autists have served in the military or other high stress jobs.
  6. Autism itself is a politically correct term. It’s not an insult; Autism Spectrum Disorder is the official DSM-5 diagnosis, which replaced the previous separate stand-alone Pervasive Developmental Disorders (Autism, Aspergers, PDD-NOS, and CDD).
  7. Autism is used in insulting ways by people that either don’t understand it, or simply don’t care. “Autistic” basically replaced “retarded” and “gay” as the go-to insult for people as the latter two are no longer PC.
  8. Weighted blankets are a popular method of dealing with anxiety related to Autism. My ex also has Aspergers and slept with one; I didn’t actually understand why she used it until I read Temple Grandin’s book (Thinking in Pictures) and learned about her “squeeze box”, which is actually an hilarious name.
  9. I’ve personally always been a big walker/pacer. Whenever I’m thinking I’ll either go on long walks or just walk in circles while rubbing a pen in my left, non-dominant hand. When I first separated from the Navy and my anxiety was at its most severe level, I would actually go on long walks just to stop my panic attacks.
  10. Individuals on the spectrum are just as diverse as those not on the spectrum and can’t be bluntly categorized.

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