Autistic role models, from different cultures, backgrounds, and identities are really important. It is a bit like the moon landing.
Now bear with me, when the US and Russia had the space race it ended up inspiring a lot of children, and obviously, they didn’t all grow up to be astronauts. It takes a very specific career path and there aren’t exactly a lot of job openings. These days, that may be changing, but you get my point.
Think of the careers that came about because of being inspired by that moment in history. By believing you can do anything, and if it turns out you’re not astronaut material, that’s ok. Because if you find that belief in yourself, you do have the chance to find something you are passionate about. Something that drives you every single day to do it. When you do find that, you know you will give it your all, because that self belief is within you.
I would say to tell your neurodivergent children that there are some amazing role models. Past and present. Boost them up, find the positive potentials and who knows? Being an astronaut may not be within their personal future, but they may soar in other ways. Plus, it can really help with a personal sense of self.
We should celebrate that we have some amazing autistic, and neurodivergent, people to look up to. Please feel free to mention, or tag some of your favourites in the comments.
All our best and love
Ross Fraser and Jeni Dern
Words – Ross Fraser
Graphic Design App – Canva
In association with Service Graphics and Lake District Wildlife Park, Keswick.