The honest truth about autism is it feels like you live your life blindfolded on a roller coaster. There will always be ups and downs, you just don’t know when they will come. When they come the downs can be so incredibly difficult to get through.
I had an autistic adult recently tell me they were too weak for this world; I said to them that is simply not true. We do need a way to better adapt to the world and enable others to see the real person much more clearly. However, I will say this, it takes a lot of strength to go through what we do and keep going. A meltdown itself is so mentally and physically draining.
Personally, the worst thing to go through is when my instinctual side is too agitated. If a trapped thought just seems unsolvable and keeps repeating in my mind constantly then it’s not long before I have a period of becoming non verbal. It’s not even fear of talking, I literally lose the ability to talk, even having control of my own thoughts is practically impossible at this point. I can’t be touched, at all, and need as much space as possible. The last time this happened it lasted for 3 days and I knew how worried my wife was. I really don’t like my daughter seeing me like that to be honest, but it’s what happens. It is the reality for me being an autistic person. It is mainly when the outside world affects me too deeply; when something gets in my head that doesn’t have a solution and just won’t get out. That is why I try to control my environment very carefully. It helps but it’s not the solution, reducing external impact in general could be.
That is why I started this project; I knew there had to be a better way. It was just a case of finding the right one; that this can’t be as good as things get for us. Getting understanding and support in place for us is essential, but we have to ensure caregivers have access to the right support too. Being autistic isn’t not an easy life at all, but loving someone with autism, that takes a strong heart. And just because we may not be able to always say it, doesn’t mean we don’t feel or that we don’t appreciate that deeply.
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All the best
Words – Ross A Fraser
Imagery – Ross A Fraser
Graphic Design App – Canva