I was impressed Anne Hegerty from ‘The Chase’ chose to star on ‘I’m a Celebrity, Get Me Out Of Here,’ reality t.v. show, because anyone with autism will know it’s not an easy decision to make.
Anne was clearly upset with her new surroundings, daunted by the challenge she’d set herself. But anyone with autism symptoms know that new circumstances in a new environment, will leave us with a certain trepidation, a nervousness, foreboding, an apprehension and anxiety that can make us feel afraid, worried and upset.
When I heard Anne talk about her symptoms, she was talking about me. Watching Anne struggle reminded me of my own struggles. Talking about our symptoms gives us courage and hope, but opening up isn’t always that easy. It’s not because we’re afraid to speak out, it’s often because we’re afraid of what may come back.
Putting ourselves out there can meet with reprisal from those who choose to be uninformed. I say choose because we all have a choice. Like the other contestants on the show who have been warm, supportive and encouraging towards her, others need to do the same. Away from the show she’s not been without her critics.
From someone like myself who also deals with the symptoms of autism, I know just how intolerant others can be. The irony is although others will never admit their intolerance, they are intolerant of themselves. What happens is we become the scapegoat for their intolerance.