In my last post, I discussed how the needs of neurodiverse / autistic people are not as obvious as a physical disability because they can’t be seen. These hidden challenges often lead to rifts in relationships because there isn’t a shared understanding of each other.
Common ground is built through discussions in which we actively seek to understand rather than judge. This is how we gain new perspectives and these up-dated viewpoints change lives both now and in the generations to come.
From my years of working with autistic / neurodiverse people, I’ve encountered certain themes which surface regularly. And it’s these, that I would like to share with you.
You may have heard the saying: “if you meet one autistic person, you’ve met one autistic person”. In other words, no two people are alike regardless of diagnosis. So, what follows is my two-cents worth to get the conversation started. It will not apply to everyone, so...
For years, autistic / neurodiverse people have been asking why they should have to change to fit into society. And as voices are slowly being heard, there is a growing trend towards acceptance and embracing difference. Granted, we still have a long way to go but the tides are changing. Society, on the whole, is marching forwards.
When it comes to the workplace, UK law (Equality Act 2010) states that reasonable adjustments should be made to prevent discrimination of people with disabilities. At the core, this is humanity’s recognition of difference. And that awakening, leads us to respect and accommodate diverse needs. In other words, to develop a culture which says, “you’re OK and I’m OK”.
So, we’re improving in the workplace but what happens outside of work? An autistic / neurodiverse person doesn’t finish their working day at 5pm only to find themselves magically morphed, like Cinderella, into someone else. In...
2020 was a year we will all remember! A year when we had no choice but to pivot. Although some of my work was already done online, the thought of operating this on a full-time basis seemed out of the question. And then there was lockdown! Zoom meetings became my new norm overnight. I, along with my colleagues, found that it was possible after all. Yes, there’ve been some hiccups but I’ve also seen huge benefits! But does remote working suit everyone? What about neurodiverse and autistic people? With the new national lockdown in place in the UK, it is an issue we can't ignore.
As is often the case, there's been a combination of ups and downs. We’ve seen a fair amount in the media concerning the emotional consequences of restricted social contact. Poor access to people and other activities that feed our souls can lead some of us to a very dark place.
On the other hand, a number of people I work with have reported lower stress levels during this...