It frustrates the hell out of me to know that it was autism all along, particularly because a diagnosis as a child will have made my life easier.
Questions were being asked by my consultants and ignored. Autism is the reason I failed in school. It is also the reason I carried guilt for 25 years, because academically I felt I’d let myself down. For years those same tapes kept playing in my head.
With an autism diagnosis officially confirmed I still have to deal with mental confusion and anxiety around the condition. What the diagnosis does is put all of my experiences into context to know now that my life’s experiences finally make sense. None of the abuse, neglect and trauma I endured had anything to do with me, or in any way was my fault.
It was important that I was able to tick the last box. The hard part is knowing that’s what I have, now age 55, but it’s made easier because it answers the questions to the neurological side of cerebral palsy that I didn’t have and needed to have.
It doesn’t take away the anger and frustrations of being told there was nothing wrong with me growing up and that I needed to get on with my life.
To know this is what it is is helpful, to know I can’t change how I got to this place is difficult, to know it was autism all along as a child, makes it even more incomprehensible that these are even my experiences.
But it’s the last piece of a 9 year very long extended jigsaw from my initial cerebral palsy diagnosis at the age of 46. I must find acceptance on it.