How does Autism Spectrum Disorder affect me?


It can be very intellectually challenging to coherently connect the disorganised and sometimes contradictory information about my environment from my senses. In this chaos it is tough, sometimes impossible, to control the stress and anxiety. Many of my senses are hypersensitive (over-sensitive), a few examples are:

We live in a world which relentlessly bombards us with noises, smells, visual information, etc. so without a brain designed to deal with this frenzy of information it causes considerable stress and anxiety. I cannot filter anything out so while awake I am being bombarded by information from my senses; the busier an environment the more exhausting this is. Everybody with or without Autism Spectrum Disorder responds to their environment relative to the way they perceive it. If two people perceive their surroundings in totally different ways they may well respond to it very differently; perception matters.

I often have difficulty understanding emotions, both mine and those of other people. Recognising social subtleties is mostly beyond me; I know the theory but fail in practise. From my perspective social customs may seem confusing, unintuitive and sometimes invisible. Generally I would avoid large social gatherings and feel much more at ease holding a conversation with just one person at a time.

Although there are many things which I find very hard I am grateful for the things I can do; for example playing the piano, photography and I also very much enjoy the challenge of science research.