What Not To
So I’ll admit, I haven’t had a ton of experience in this yet because I haven’t told many people about my diagnosis (and therefore haven’t gotten bad responses!).
But I know what I fear people will say. I’d love it if everyone could take a quick look at these things and try to avoid them. But I also don’t want people feeling like they can’t talk to me and if they make a mistake, it’s game over! I understand that you might feel put on the spot. I understand that you might mean well with a comment. It’s ok to make a mistake and say something wrong as long as you’re open to learning why it’s hurtful and changing what you say.
I’m not going to go into much about why I don’t want people saying these things to me (or any other Autistic person) because it’s already been done before!! These blogs, articles, and videos are done by Autistic people who have gone through this, so I want to feature their experiences and advice.
Here’s some other Autistic peoples’ lists and explanations:
- Amythest Schaber- Ask an Autistic #12: What Shouldn’t I Say to Autistic People? video
- A. Stout’s post on TheAutismSite: 11 Things Not to Say to Someone With Autism
- BBC Three’s “Things Not to Say to an Autistic Person” video
- Lydia Brown’s article for The Mighty.
- Chris Bonnello- “Autistic Not Weird” blog posts:
- My Response to “You’re not REALLY autistic, are you?”
- “You have autism? Oh, I’m so sorry.” What to say (and NOT to say) to autistic people.
- I’m ever so sorry. I really DON’T look autistic.
- We need to stop saying “We’re all a little autistic.”
You can also check out my post 12: Asperger’s or Autism? FAQ for more info on language and my preferences.
No need to read and watch all of these links above (unless you want to, in which case ALL THE BROWNIE POINTS!), but at least checking out some of these resources would mean a lot to any Autistic person you interact with.
[image description: A closeup of a green succulent plant. The leaves looks smooth, but have pointy thorns at the end.]