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Autism Spectrum Disorder, more commonly known as simply Autism, is a broad spectrum that may affect many aspects of life, including the following:
- Difficulty With Social Situations (Including difficulty making friends)
- Social Anxiety
- Seeming “Odd”
- Hardwired for Logic
- Minimal Physical Expression of Emotion
- Gastrointestinal Issues
- Difficulty With Change
- Distortion of “Natural” Train of Thought
- Self-Harm Ranging from Mild to Severe
- Delay in Cognitive Function (or, alternatively, increased intelligence)
- Delay in Gross Motor Skills
- Delay in Speech
- Difficulty Maintaining Eye Contact
- Tendency Towards Substance Abuse
- Sensitivity of the Senses
- Tendency Towards Co-Occurring Mental Illness
- Obsessive Thinking Towards Specific Topics
- Tendency Towards Introversion
- Tendency Towards a Strong Memory
But what is it like to actually live with Autism? As an individual diagnosed with ASD level one (more commonly known as Asperger’s), I will be explaining in the article exactly what makes my brain different from the average person, and what it’s like to live with such a mind.
What is Autism?
Autism Spectrum Disorder is a neurological disorder which essentially affects the way the brain is “wired.” Approximately 99 out of 100 people are considered what is called “neurotypical” meaning that their brain is wired and functions as a “normal” person would. However, the other 1% is what is known as neurodiverse, or, having Autism. ASD can affect many aspects of life, with the symptoms in question being listed above.
Autistic people typically have a generally hard time making friends, especially at younger ages, since we’re seen as “odd” or “weird” because many of us have a hard time with the following aspects of social interaction, to name a few:
- Maintaining Eye Contact
- Difficulty Interjecting Into a Conversation
- Feelings of Inability to Connect with Peers
- Social Anxiety (Often times just asking someone how they’re doing is the equivalent of a neurotypical individual performing in front of thousands of people)
- Difficulty in Making or Maintaining Relationships (Both romantic and platonic)
- Seen as “Unemotional” or “Apathetic” by Peers
Let me say something now, and be very clear about this. Autistic people are not necessarily anti-social! We need friends, too! This makes the friendship and relationship-forming process much more difficult due to the fact that a lot of Autistic individuals that I have met put a lot of pressure on themselves whilst attempting to form a relationship with an individual because they desire to connect so intensely.
Autistic people usually have between one and “a few” specific topics they know a lot about. And by a lot, I mean almost everything there is to know in many cases. In my case, my “obsessions” are religion (specifically paganism and the occult), politics, technology (specifically digital marketing and process-oriented mechanisms), and botanical entheogens. This is, unfortunately, often seen as “odd” or “quirky.” However, the obsessions are so strong, that even I will talk eternally if someone ‘gets me started’ on one of these topics (refer to the previous section as to why this may be shocking).
The most important thing for my autism is cannabidiol oil. CBD is great for Autism.