Why I’m an orphan times three

Why I feel orphaned–I’m always going against the flow–Credit to Rhi Lloyd-Williams.

I’ve tweeted and blogged for months, but never really explained my Orphan status. So here goes.

  1. Literally an orphan due to my parents’ deaths when I was barely middle aged. Not that uncommon, but none of us knew I was autistic. I’m a little sorry about that, more for their sake because they never really understood me. My mom and her dad had undiagnosed aspie traits, which may have contributed to their demise. Mom was a month shy of 69.
  2. In everyday reality, I am orphaned by men, often with Asperger diagnoses, who won’t allow women at their table. They don’t notice some of us are Research Orphans [women, nonbinary, non white], especially us mature women who fly under the radar of most diagnostic assessment checklists. Now Mottron and others claim we are over diagnosed, watering down their test samples. He wants to bring back the separate Asperger label. I vote for Sukhareva Syndrome, or maybe Wing-Gould. Whether Herr A knew about Grunya Sukhareva is moot; she deserves recognition now. Here’s the research hamster wheel–
Why women aren’t often subjects of autism research, by Allison Ratto, INSAR 2019

3. Metaphorically orphaned by a society* that continues to deny the internalized presentation of autistics, and rewards those of us who successfully mask with the verdict “you don’t look autistic”

.*Including prominent researchers and assessors who act as gatekeepers

Denied a seat at the table as

I’m TOO autistic to be an expert on Autism

But NOT autistic enough to be Like Your Child

#WeAreTheExperts #BreakTheAutismStereotype #NotJustCuteWhiteBoys #WeAreLikeYourChild #GenderBias #WhiteMaleGaze