Now I know I am autistic, what next?
I started this blog almost exactly a year ago! So much has changed, so much has stayed the same.
Now I have my ” official diagnosis” I can move forward with my original plan.
I want to reach out to other undiagnosed older adults and help them find out about
autism and how it might have worked in their lives. Diagnosis can bring self understanding,
self forgiveness, new understanding of old hurts, emotional healing, repair of relationships, and learning of new ways to make life better.
For me, this means that I will not only have a blog, but will start workiing on a forum for discussion of autism and the lost generations of people age 55 and over.
I want to develop talks to explain how autism is hiding in these generations and how useful knowing about one’s autism can be to people when they learn of it.
Since December I have been working on developing a two sided single page information sheet to share with others. It has been very difficult to find the right words to explain autism and to create a short sort of self test to help people see if they too might be autistic. Along with this I need to include contact information and a place to go for more information. A lot of stuff to fit on one sheet of paper!
Here is a link to my newly created forum, as a page on Facebook. It is meant for information sharing about autism diagnosis among older people and not as a social page, for parenting, or other ( such as sales or self promotion) venue. Please join up and share – there are so many who might benefit if they were able to find out that they too have always been autistic, but did not know it! https://www.facebook.com/groups/543548573159235/
Next I plan to approach local groups and perhaps radio or newspapers to propose a talk about undiscovered autism in the senior populations. I think of such groups as the senior citizens center, nursing homes, emergency room/medical facilities, the homeless shelters, shelter for victims of abuse, drug treatment group, mental illness support groups, etc.
I will print as many of my one page sheets as I can afford to and pass them out, leave them in public places such as grocery store bulletin boards, the library, and other places where people may gather (with permission).
The idea of talking to groups is terrifying to me, but in new understanding of my autism and working on personal growth, I feel bound to try this. Knowing how much I have been helped and how much relief of emotional pain, how much better my life has been since learning of my autism, it is something that seems very important. Important enough for me to try!
OK, here goes… wish me luck! ❤ It is going to be a new year of discovery and exploration. Learning how to be old and autistic at the same time, and hoping to find others along the way. I’ll keep you posted!
5 thoughts on “What Next?”
I admire the work you’ve done and are doing, but… I wonder how many people are left out of participation in various discussion groups because of Facebook. The number of forums from which I’m being excluded has increased dramatically lately, because I am not on Facebook, and refuse to ever participate on that platform. Your choice of Facebook is exclusionary, and will contribute to a site that has violated the very meaning of community in too many ways to even count. Contribute to the power of Facebook and you contribute to the breakdown of true community.
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I too admire your work and courage, but Facebook is evil. I use it as little as possible, having recently deleted my longtime account, replacing it with a pseudo account.
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Sorry you feel like that, I have no answer that is likely to make you happy. I had multiple reasons for choosing to use the format I have chosen, and it is what I have to offer.
I hope you can find a community somewhere that you find acceptable. There is definitely something out there for everybody, and people’s views about autism and other related things, politics , semantics, belief systems, and other ideas will always be in conflict. We can choose our own ways or we can choose to agree. I wish you the best in your endeavors, and hope you can find a format that will be pleasing to you.
I’ve applied to your group under my pseudo FB account. Best of luck in the new year, and looking forward to what comes next in your blog.
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thanks, I am glad!