From Loneliness To Diagnosis

My Autism Journey – In Memes!

Hello, and welcome back to The Autistic Writer. How’s everyone doing? It seems like everyone I speak to at present is hovering around three conversation topics: the pandemic, the Oxford Astra Zeneca vaccine, and Meghan Markle. Before getting into the main part of the blog, let’s have a really brief chat about those three things.

The Pandemic: I was on the bus from the city centre to my office on Thursday morning, and the bus was waiting before setting off. I see a guy walk up the street, in work clothes and wearing a mask. He gets on the bus, looks around for a seat, settles on one just behind the driver, then takes off his mask and starts eating a huge sandwich. I wasn’t the only person uncomfortable with this. It’s a short journey for me, and as my stop came up, I waited to disembark behind another passenger, a young lady. This young lady verbally challenged the sandwich eater, and told him he should have kept his mask on. He laughed at her. That was, I’m afraid, a red rag to a bull, for me.

He got a pretty stern piece of my mind. Everyone is sick of the pandemic, and sick of lockdown. But it’s fools like this guy who will drive us straight back into another lockdown. He was the definition of a covidiot.

The Oxford Astra Zeneca Vaccine: Countries around Europe are suspending the Oxford Astra Zeneca vaccine amid concerns of side-effects causing blood clots. However, it transpires that the side-effect cases are vanishingly rare, and it has been claimed that the blood clot cases reported represent a lower frequency than would have been expected without the vaccine. Obviously, any reported side-effects need to be investigated, and it remains to be seen what the outcome will be. However, all the health authorities seem to be saying the vaccine is safe to use. This indicates it could well be a political decision, rather than a health decision, to suspend the vaccine. Would a government really put the health of their citizens at risk purely for a political or ideological position, though? Well, you only have to look at Sweden’s pandemic response, or Boris Johnson’s handshaking, herd immunity nonsense, to get your answer to that question.

As an interesting aside, when the Oxford Astra Zeneca vaccine was launched, the media referred to it as The Oxford Astra Zeneca vaccine. Since the side-effect claims, it appears some media, including BBC news, are referring to it increasingly as the Astra Zeneca vaccine, dropping the Oxford. I have no comment to make about it, and don’t know what, if anything, it means. I just noticed it, that’s all.

Meghan Markle: I’m going to be quick. Racism is one of the most dangerous and vile evils facing the human race. Mental health is increasingly become a daily struggle for vast numbers of people. Wealth, fame and fortune immunise no one from its effects. For someone to admit they have thought about taking their own life is a shocking revelation. People saying Markle lied or exaggerated are helping no one. If they have evidence or proof she lied, they should present it. Otherwise, we should treat such accusations as what they are: unsubstantiated “opinions”. Speaking as someone who has had suicidal thoughts in the past, I can tell you that some of us who come back from that mental state, when we find the strength, feel we must speak up about it regardless of the negative reactions, to let other people know they are not alone.



So, those are some of the thoughts I’ve been having this week. Now, for something that is, for the most part, a little more light-hearted. I present to you… From Loneliness To Diagnosis: My Autism Journey… In Memes!


So, it kinda started like this…


Although I did get a little bit of this…


But then it kinda went like this…


When you don’t go to school as a kid, people start to see you as a problem. That drives you away from them, but then people want to “help”…


The problems that came with undiagnosed autism weren’t really helped by raging hormones…


Becoming a father, even at such a young age, was definitely the best thing that ever happened to me. But being a parent is not easy…


And being a parent means you have all kinds of responsibilities…


Being a single dad raising your kid on your own, holding down a job, not knowing you’re autistic, and trying to make sense of relationships wasn’t a cakewalk…

And then you get this…


For some reason, no matter how hard I worked, and how great my results were, my face never quite fit at work…

Here’s the new boss…

Same as the old boss…


But it was never really about the day job, for me…


In life generally, apparently, I’m “marmite”…


Unconscious masking when you don’t even know you’re autistic is exhausting, and it only ends up one way. Fortunately, my employer knew just how to look after me…


Not all my peers at work appreciated my logical approach, my aversion to bullshit, and my insistence on people being treated fairly…


Sometimes, you have to make a positive career change…


And you start wonder, Why am I so different? But I didn’t know what I was talking about…

like… I really didn’t know what I was talking about…


And like all late-diagnosed autistic people, I started to come to terms with it… erm, I think.


Once I started thinking about it, I couldn’t stop thinking about it… which isn’t autistic at all…


The learning changes you. There is literally no going back.


Another job change, and an environment that suits me better…

But it’s still the neurotypical world, so you’re never really going to stay comfortable…


Fortunately, coming to terms with being autistic after a while means you can put things in context, so although you might find the neurotypical world as nightmarish as ever, you can at least see things for what they really are…

“Hey, what about this weather! You been on holiday yet? What you having for dinner? Did you get a haircut?”


Why do I write this blog?

When I was first diagnosed as autistic, at the age of 54, I quickly learned that there was a serious shortage of information and resources for newly-diagnosed adults.  It’s my aim to inform about autism and autism-related issues as I learn.  I will never hide what I do behind a paywall.  If you like what you read and want to chip in, feel free to “buy me a coffee” by clicking the icon below.

You might also be interested in David Scothern’s blog, Mortgage Advisor on FIRE, which covers a range of topics including mental health issues and financial independence. 

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