Disability In Doctor Who!

Hi everyone, trying my best here to still keep up with the posting relatively often (trying for twice a month but we will see as I have a LOT of University work at the moment to get through) and a topic has recently fallen into my lap as it were.

Now, before I get into this I wanted to give some history to the situation. I was not brought up as a watcher or Dr who and was in fact introduced to the show through another thread, through the Sarah Jane Adventures. She was the product of my special interests for a long time and I remember when the world lost Elisabeth Sladen it was a hard hit for many of us. I continued to watch Doctor who for a while after this but when the main writer changed from Russell. T. Davies to Stephen Moffat I found that it wasn’t the same show I had fallen in love with, I lost interest and stopped watching about 2014, waiting for the day that a new writer would come into fruition and make Doctor who great again.

Well, all I can say as that I will be re-joining the large number of auties (probably like 30%) that are fans of the programme due to the new writer and the amazing new doctor. I have caught up on all the episodes and I plan to keep watching again from now (with even the possibility of the thirteenth doctor becoming a special interest again one day in the future). But this is not (quite) the reason why I am here ranting away. I have more to say on this than how much I like it and that’s the thing that jumped on me the very first episode.

The moment I saw a young adult learning to ride a bike I knew it, but then they said the word and I almost squeaked out loud. The word was dyspraxic. This is a word I don’t think I have ever heard on tv in a non-comedic or documentary sense. Dyspraxia isn’t a ‘cool’ disability as far as tv writers are concerned, it isn’t the type of thing that leaves a person – in most instances – seriously disabled and it doesn’t usually affect behavior, although behavior can sometimes change due to frustration or embarrassment.

But not only was this new Doctor Who companion disabled in a way that I myself am, but he was the first Doctor Who companion ever to have a disability.

Like many other people, however, I was a bit dubious at first. Was this going to last? Was this character going to be a real representation of what it is to have an invisible disability? Or was it going to be mentioned once and never again?

Well, again they came through, the disability that Ryan has which affects balance and coordination as well as executive functioning, was mentioned again in the second episode but this wasn’t the typical representation. Ryan is not just his disability, and the Doctor has also helped to show already that despite his disability Ryan has strengths in other areas. He has flaws and advantages, he is like anyone else! (louder for the ableists at the back?)

There is yet more to this though, and that comes in the personal effect it has on me. I have often said to my fellow Dr. Who fans that if I was ever a companion I would be really unhelpful as I am not good at running, have terrible coordination (Unless on a horse) and can fall over while standing stock still (its a talent, I know). To hear the Doctor tell Ryan, and through him, the whole world of disabled people, that he was worth it, that he was as good as the others and that the things he found difficult didn’t really matter so long as he tried, that was a message I took straight to the heart. To hear a fictional character who is seen by so many children and families look so… normally, at a disabled person that for me, that is a sign of equality and a sign that things are changing.

I know that now if I have to tell strangers about my dyspraxia they will possibly relate me to Ryan, meaning that there will be more awareness about the condition.  In my heart though, as silly as it sounds, I know the Doctor accepts us all, she (he)  loves us all (all of us odd little humans) and that we are special, just as the other humans are to her, being seen the same as someone else – like everyone else – has never felt so good.

As always, thanks for reading guys, I hope you will leave me your thoughts, feelings, and comments and I hope to speak to you all again soon, thanks everyone 🙂

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Right to Write?

This is a topic which just came to me recently, and the title gives very little away, but the question is as it stands. Is it right, especially for those of us that are Autistic, to write?

I was taught to write down my thoughts and feelings as a side-product of my fanfiction writing. I started to write my own fanfiction (Long before I knew fanfiction was a thing and even longer before I knew there was a whole internet community of people who wrote and read it) back when I was around ten or eleven, it was a way for me to deal with my intense special interests and a hobby. I wrote my first 52-page story in primary seven, in fact, I still have a copy of the typed book. I no longer make covers, print my work or even make pieces with word counts in the 10,000’s but I do still write fanfiction.

My writing style has (I hope!) evolved since then, I have learned more about description and not re-iterating lines from the original content. I often base my fiction more on the feelings and inner workings of my characters, I use writing to explore ideas, to explore emotions and pain that I have experienced.

Even though I do use my writing as a way to express myself, I’m never quite as successful as I would like to have been as my characters of choice are often not like me, they are stronger, braver and more skilled than I am. My first thought still stands though, the writing of these characters began my journey into better self-expression.

When I first saw a psychologist aged ten she used to get me to express my emotions through artwork, I would draw my thoughts and feelings, the things that made me feel good and the things that felt bad too. I began to share these drawings with my mum and, as I approached high school age, much of this changed into writing letters to explain myself. When I was at my lowest, aged around fifteen, I was encouraged to write my emotions even if I didn’t share them. This helped me for a while but after a while I became aware I was writing the same things over and over, ruminating rather than putting the thought onto paper and then letting it go. I soon stopped writing down my feelings.

Since then, on and off, I have had diaries, art journals, fill-in-the-blank books and more but nothing has ever truly stuck, even though I enjoy writing. I have honestly surprised myself that, even though there have been brakes in my writing, I have always come back to writing this blog ever since I started it in 2016, that’s a good few years.

One of the things I am aware of that might become a problem is something I have done in the past and is something I feel many autistic people are at risk of falling into. That thing is just writing. Just writing feelings and thoughts, good or bad, and not sharing them with anyone else. From my experience, this can make things a lot worse because you can focus on the negatives, you can feel the bad things over and over, not talking can mean that the feelings never truly exit the mind and body.

I’ve recently begun going to a group which solves this problem. The group focuses on being given a mental-health related topic to write about, you are given fifteen minutes to write and then the group shares their writing (if they want to) and talk about the emotions that have come forward.

This is helpful. It means I don’t have time to edit my thoughts, it means I am hearing myself read the thoughts out loud. It means that I am getting to talk about my emotions without having too much time to think about them. I am lucky that I have this option, lucky that I am almost made to talk about my feelings so that they do get out into the open air.

I know many of us don’t have this type of help, that many of us do find solace in a piece of paper, whether written, typed on or painted on, and that’s ok. It is better to get it out there than to keep it stuck in your mind. it is better to help yourself in any way you can. So I suppose I can’t answer my own question. I don’t know if it is right to write out our feelings, all that I know for sure is that we should do what we need, individually. What we need in ourselves, in our lives, in our version of creativity, whether it seems ‘right’ or not.

Thank you all for reading, hope you enjoyed this, and please give me any questions or suggestions you may have as well as comments.

See you soon 🙂

 

 

 

 

Asking for Visibilty for Invisible Disabilities 

Note: I wrote this post back in July but I didn’t finish it (I took a bit of an informal break from blogging but planning to very much get back into it now and hoping to upload at least every month, some of this information may seem a little older but it is all still relevant)

So, everyone, this post is beginning at nearly half eleven at night, those of us in the UK will be suffering just as I am due to the incessant heat, and for me, this means it is far too hot for my weighted blanket. No weighted blanket, now that I am so used to this, means very little sleep.

So naturally, I ended up on YouTube. Bad idea. As you also probably know YouTube can mean ending in the black hole of ‘just one more video’ and before you know it you can’t even remember where you started.

In this particular video watch, I found myself watching a video with a young girl around my age who has POTS syndrome. She was speaking about people treating her badly because she does not always appear disabled, she even had examples of rude notes left on her windscreen. She doesn’t always have to use a wheelchair but is always in need of the space.

I think this is one of these issues which has two ends. We need to raise awareness of those ignorant people who park in disabled spaces, of course, we do, but I have noticed as people become more aware of disabled parking laws  they are not becoming more aware of types of disability, leading to many people with need for a disabled  space suffering discrimination because we don’t ‘look disabled.’

I myself do not have a blue badge, I did when I was young because of my dyspraxia and weak muscle tone but this was removed when I was around seven as I was no longer seen as ‘disabled enough.’ I feel this was fair judgment and I don’t have an issue with this decision as I am now more than able to walk to and from the car as well as get in and out of one without risking scratching the car next to me.   This blog post will take a different form when talking about similar issues. I feel I have previously talked about the issues of being invisibly disabled in a world which expects all disabled people to be obvious – should we all wear a big, flashing badge?

So, on the topic of blue badges, I have watched many videos and seen many comments with people saying why autism should warrant a badge or, some, genuinely believing disabled parking spaces are only for those who need a wheelchair.  Why do autistic people need disabled parking spaces:

  • They may need quick access to and from the shop in case of a meltdown or shutdown when the child needs to get back to the safety of the car.
  • They may have children who elope, and who are at risk of running when they get out the door. As most disabled parking spaces are near the door to shops this may be very valuable.
  • They may have children, like me, who also suffer from depth perception issues, dyspraxia or weak muscles, even the milder forms of cerebral palsy, and need the extra space at the side of the car to open the door and get in and out.

There are no doubt many other reasons for using a disabled parking space if you are autistic (as of course I have used the idea of a parent and autistic child but this could easily be an autistic adult) or have autistic family members.

On the same breath as the blue badge discussion, there are other ways in which people will react badly to us because they can’t see our disabilities. For example, I have recently been told that Stagecoach (which runs all my local bus routes) Will only accept assistance dogs as dogs wearing a yellow/green vest or harness. I was very annoyed to see this, for one very few assistance dogs wear a harness in this particular colour (I think they were referring to Guide Dogs in this and technically Guide Dog’s wear a white harness) and also, perhaps more importantly (And I’ll say it loudly for those who still don’t seem to be able to hear it) NOT ALL ASSISTANCE DOGS HAVE TO BE TRAINED BY AN ORGANISATION. NOT ALL ASSISTANCE DOGS WEAR A VEST. IT IS NOT LEGAL TO REQUIRE AN IDENTIFICATION DOCUMENT FOR ASSISTANCE DOGS. IDENTITY DOCUMENTS DO NOT EXIST.

And now that I have got over that little rant you can see that this requirement could have a huge impact on those of us with invisible disabilities who use the help of an assistance dog, especially those of us who are ASD and may find confrontation from having the dog with you means you are rendered unable to speak or struggle to communicate in any way.

A Final point which I will make comes from a recent experience I had which was related to my invisible disability. I went to my local swimming pool on my own for the first time around a month ago. I was nervous about going, and to top it off my mum had forgotten to give me the little card which means I get a discount due to my disabilities. I had my bus pass, which has the (I believe) UK-wide Pass symbol on it, and so I was not too worried about getting in. On going to pay I was told, abruptly, that I had to have their specific card (even though the pass symbol indicated I was at least a concession) I tried to explain, all the while getting very nervous, that I had one of their cards but I didn’t have it with me. The woman proceeded to ask that I pay the full ticket price. I knew my mum had only given me enough money for the concession price. I explained this to the lady, all the while trying not to cry, and she sighed, said she would look up my name on the system this time but that she wouldn’t do it again.

Why, when she could see by my lack of eye-contact and my bus pass, that I was disabled did she go through all of this, causing so much panic when she could just have looked up my name in the first place? (she also then sighed when I was trying to count the money to give to her, frazzling me further and making it harder to count the money)

This story has a slightly better ending as I have a family friend who works at the pool that had a note added to my card so when it was scanned it would explain that I have autism and may need some more time to respond and to count my money. I do feel though, if the world was more aware of the invisible side of disabilities like autism, then there would be no need for these notes or the National Autistic Society Cards I carry (Will Link to these at the end) people would simply give the benefit of the doubt.

In the world we live in it seems there is so much noise that people can no longer pick out the quiet sounds in the background, the quiet sounds which need to be heard.

Thank you evryone for reading, I hope you enjoyed this post after so long and as always I’d love to hear your thoughts and comments on this topic or any other. Questions and suggestions for topics are also more than welcome.

 

Links:

The Video: https://www.facebook.com/agonyautie/videos/1099463153542947/

The Cards: https://www.autism.org.uk/products/free-resources/autism-alert-cards.aspx

 

 

 

Original Fiction on ASD

Hi everyone, I am so sorry it has been so long since I posted, I am hoping beyond hope to get some drafts finished soon and up for you all (I know I am terrible at keeping a schedule) BUT today I have a treat for you, this is the first time I have finished some original fiction in a long time and I thought you might like to read it 🙂

It follows a character with ASD and talks about Assistance dogs for ASD. I am hoping to get the confidence to post it in its entirety soon but I want to get some thoughts before I let it go where my family can read it…

Anyway, I hope you will give it a go and let me know what you think.

Thank you all as always for being so considerate and understanding of my busy life (ish) and always being here to read. Hope to have more soon and looking forward to your thoughts, questions and comments, have an awesome day 🙂

A friend unlike any other (original fiction)

ASD and T1D

So this is a post I have been planning for a while now, about the life of a person – like myself – who has Autism Spectrum Disorder and Type One Diabetes. These two conditions do appear to be linked (some professionals would disagree) but there appears to be no scientific reason why the two are linked, yet in every group I have been to for those of us who are type one, there has always been at least one other person on the spectrum.

However, I’m not about to argue about the whole who, what, where, when of Autism and Diabetes, I am simply going to talk to you all a bit about my story as a diabetic and how it affected me.

I was diagnosed a month or so after my tenth birthday as a type one diabetic. I don’t remember the exact date, I’m not even 100% sure it happened in December. I do remember that I was drinking and going to the toilet a lot, to the extent that one night I got up to the toilet eighteen times and still managed to wet the bed. Up until that night, it had all been put down to stress as my Mum had only just come home from two months in hospital with Encephalitis (causing the brain to swell) and my family, mum included, considered this reaction to be due to the anxiety and change that I had been enduring.

I remember after that night my mum had phoned or seen the GP (this chunk in my mind is a little blurry) and I was taken straight from school to the local hospital, where, after blood and urine testing I was diagnosed type one. At this time my parents knew so little about the condition that they honestly thought all it meant was that I would no longer be able to eat sweet things and that is far from the truth of the matter. They didn’t know that from that day I would have to have a minimum of four injections a day and four finger pricks although in reality the checks on my blood sugar levels were often at least double the minimum amount.

There are likely some of you who are now thinking… wait, I thought diabetes was about being overweight and was caused by sugar? This is totally WRONG, type one diabetes has nothing to do with sugar or weight. Type one is caused by the pancreas (a little organ down next to your stomach) failing to produce any insulin. Insulin is what turns the sugar from our food into energy and without it, the level of sugar in our blood can become so high that it will – over time – be deadly. In type two diabetes, the type which is always talked about on the news and other media types is caused by the pancreas struggling due to poor diet and sometimes due to genetics.

When I was first diagnosed this was an issue that I struggled with, that people did not believe I was diabetic because they thought that only old fat people could get it. I was frequently told by elderly people that I had eaten too many sweeties as a child. As a kid with Autism, I found this very difficult. I didn’t understand that what these women were saying to me was false knowledge and it upset me, making me think that I had been a bad child in some way. I also experienced being called a drug addict and being told I was disgusting when my parents would have to give me injections, or later I was giving myself injections, in a public place. Most of the suffering I have experienced due to diabetes has come from the hands of other people.

Image result for insulin pen novo nordisk junior

I was a very lucky kid in that my parents helped me to be strict with my diabetes, helped me to understand the dangers if I was not careful and did not keep in control of my illness. It was due to the guidance they gave me and the strict rule-following mindset I had as an Aspie girl, that only two years after I was diagnosed as type one I was one of the first six kids in my NHS region to be trialled on the relatively new Insulin Pump. This meant only one injection (the insertion of a cannula) every three days instead of four or five injections.

Image result for medtronic insulin pump uk

Before I got the pump I wasn’t sure about it, in layman’s terms, there was going to be a plastic tube going into my body all the time and a machine attached to the end. I would have to wear it all the time and there would be no hiding it. This was not the reality of the situation. The Insulin pump gave me back freedom I had forgotten about, it meant I could eat at any time of the day not just specific and set mealtimes. It meant I could eat extra foods such as an ice cream or other treats without being given another injection.

And I suppose that is us almost up to date on the whole T1 story, the most recent part only changed in the past six months or so and it came about due to a less than great happening.

As I think I have mentioned before I have had an eating disorder for around five years now and due to this my HbA1c (basically my long-term blood sugar readings) was very high, much higher than it had been since my diagnosis ten years ago. Due to this my mum and my diabetic Nurse agreed to have a trial of the amazing Freestyle Libre.

Image result for freestyle libre

The Libre is a little cannula which goes into your arm and you scan this cannula (there must be more technology to it than that but I don’t know how it all works) with the little reader (smaller than a mobile phone) and it tells you not only your current blood sugar but shows it on a graph of the past 24 hours as well as giving a little arrow which indicates the direction that your blood sugar level is going in. It is amazing and the first life-changing piece of tech since the pump was made. I love this invention and it makes living with ASD and T1D much, much easier.

One of the hardest parts of having Type one and ASD is the issues with executive function. Of course, diabetes is now such a huge part of my life that it has become very normal and mundane and therefore I often forget to check my blood sugar levels. The brilliance of the reader is that instead of it taking five minutes to check my blood sugar I can carry on doing whatever I am doing and give my arm a little swipe with the reader and bingo – blood sugar done! It means I have far better control and for those that are also diabetic and face this battle, the Libre got my HbA1c from 87 to 52 in six months. It is incredibly expensive when it comes to self-funding but it has made a huge influence on my life and made Diabetes much easier yet again.

When it comes to living with ASD and T1 there have been a lot of battles, a lot of issues with learning how to recognise changes in my blood sugars (before its so low that I can’t see… oops) as well as having many, many, MANY meltdowns when having to get injections and finger pricks in the early days. I can vouch for many of us though who are ASD and T1, I can say that we can adapt, we can learn to live our lives in entirely different ways, we may struggle, but we can do it and we will.

Autism is a different way of living, after all, not a wrong way.

Thank you all for reading, I apologise hugely that things have once again got a bit sporadic with my posts but as it is exam week (gulp) and I have been very ill for the past two weeks I have been a bit all over the place. I hope you enjoy this post, any thoughts, comments or questions are as always more than welcome. Thank you all so much 🙂

Are you Gender-vague?

This is a blog on something I am very new to, something I only learned about while doing a bit of research on the more spectrum of Gender and how it is perceived amongst those of us with ASD.

I will admit I am coming at this Post from more of an area of ignorance, I do not personally know anybody who identifies as Transgender or Non-binary closely although I know a Trans woman and a genderfluid woman, both of which were in my class at school. My sister worked with a young person who experienced serious issues with their gender identity and who has since passed away.

I am, however, very willing to learn about gender expression, and, as a cisgender woman, I think it is important that those of us who are cisgender learn to support and accept those that are not as lucky as us in the views of the general public.

It was from my area of ignorance that I discovered quite a few women with ASD, either self or professionally diagnosed, identified as Gender Vague. This term also has other names, including being autigender and neuroqueer and it is a very specific definition and one which I have not heard of before and believe a lot of auties may be in the same position as I am. I feel that understanding this definition and talking about it may make life easier for people on the Spectrum, as well as their families and even doctors.

So what is being Gender Vague? This is a term only for people with autism or neurodivergence and is based on the idea that many people with these types of disabilities are people who find gender a strange concept and do not feel that they are female particularly but also do not feel they are male either. These people may also describe themselves as gender queer or Agender but they are not necessarily these things. Let me explain, people who are gender queer or Agender are more likely to understand the feeling of being male or female but they do not feel either of these ways themselves. People who are gender vague recognise that they may not feel male or female but they also don’t feel they really understand gender.

I had no knowledge at all about this area of the gender spectrum before someone mentioned it to me but, although I still identify as cisgender, I can understand why some people with ASD may identify as gender vague. As a young child, I was not, like I believe many girls are, that bothered about things being ‘boyish’ but as much as I wanted a garage for my toy cars as a third birthday present I also loved dressing up as a princess and adored babies and dolls. I was easily recognised as an average female child. I can, through my want to play with toys for ‘boys’, see that this may be more of an issue for some people with ASD and therefore it clearly needed a name.

I will not get into an argument or debate about the need for gender or the lack of need for gender, I won’t give my views on this in much detail because I don’t think it is fair for me to make judgements either way without a lot of experience within the spectrum of gender. It is in this, the idea that some people do not understand gender that I feel we are reminded of the massive variety of differences between people with autism and the fact that no two people with autism are exactly the same.

Anyway, I hope you can all overlook the less structured layout of this post and I hope it is of interest to you, maybe you will discover you are gender vague? or whether you can empathise better with those that are, I hope this post increases awareness for all of us, just a little bit.

Thank you all so much for reading, hope to see you again soon 🙂

Hermione Granger: ASD or not ASD ?

This is a piece that I have been waiting to write for quite a while and it has taken a decent bit of work and research. I am going to persuade you, whether you read my stuff often or if you are reading this as a one-off because of the topic, that Hermione Jean Granger is autistic.

I often get complaints when I bring this up that Hermione is ‘too social,’ or that ‘Hermione can’t be autistic because she is based on J.K.Rowling and she isn’t autistic’. I often feel these people fit into four categories:

  1. They honestly have just never considered Hermione as autistic, just as some have never considered her black, it’s just a different way of reading but it isn’t necessarily wrong or right.
  2. They only know the Hermione from the film series, which make her a little too flawless and show her as a bit of a social butterfly.
  3. They don’t know much about autism at all, they picture someone who is non-verbal and unintelligent, or – the biggest issue to me –
  4. They don’t know very much about how autism can be different in girls with the condition than boys. It is the same diagnosis but it has different symptoms.

So, I am going to use the original text, some quotes and some general mentions from the text, which show some of Hermione’s most autistic moments and will help to explain autism in girls along the way. I will admit that while writing this I did find I am missing some of the Harry Potter books as I borrowed the first two from the library rather than buying them and I don’t know where my copy of Goblet of Fire has gone… Anyway, this means some of the quotes are taken from the internet rather than directly from the book so there may be some discrepancies. Now, on with the show.

“Books! And cleverness! There are more important things — friendship and bravery…”

This is the perfect introduction to Hermione as a character with ASD. Why? Because she is sharing at this moment the deep feelings of many girls with ASD, girls who do not fit in and escape into a world of books. Many girls with Autism do this, and many rarely have a huge number of friends who are true friends. Also, this shows the deep desire to be able to think like the boys, to be able to be a friend to someone who isn’t just going to turn and laugh at her in the end.

Another thing that comes straight from the first book is Hermione’s knowledge of the school. She is Muggleborn, meaning she should be in total shock at the world of magic around her but Hermione has done what she always does (and many, many girls with autism do) she prepared herself as far as she possibly could. She took Hogwarts and the magical world as a bit of a special interest (often called obsessions by people outside the autism community). Hermione read everything she possibly could about Hogwarts before getting on that train and learned even more within the first week of being there to the point she easily exceeds Ron – who was brought up in the magical world – in his knowledge of Hogwarts as well as a basic knowledge of spells.

Next point we see in the first book is Hermione’s natural ability to remember things which many would have to spend time learning. I’m going to use the example of the spell Alohomora, to unlock doors. Hermione remembers this when the boys are at a loss on how to open a locked door, Hermione has kept the words and the wand movement in her repertoire and remembers it perfectly. This is another sign of possible ASD, Hermione has a very good memory, and a memory which is very academic and related to the things she wants to learn i.e. anything magic.

Hermione is the first to thrust her hand into the air when a question is asked of the class. Now I am sure many of the autistic people reading this book will be smiling nostalgically at memories of doing this themselves. The way in which Hermione does this, throwing her hand into the air as though she will explode if she doesn’t say the answer, is a feeling many of us with ASD can relate to. This shows not only an enthusiasm to answer the questions but her image as a know-it-all is captured here. Many girls with Autism know what it is to be labelled with this. On one hand if we know an answer it often is very difficult to hold back to the need to tell people, especially if the topic is very interesting, but on the other hand, many of us are blinkered to the reaction of the class. We don’t always understand that it ‘isn’t cool’ to answer the questions in a class, and it isn’t cool to look like you know everything. People with ASD often find this hard because we don’t know how to fit in but also to follow the rules.

Now then, rules, this is a BIG indicator for Hermione. She is a massive stickler for following the rules and it is not until the fifth year that she gets past the feeling many autistic girls have of thinking something horrible will happen if we break even the slightest of rules. Rules to many ASD girls are gospel, and it doesn’t make sense to us why you would want to break them, rules are there for a reason. This can also be a reason why many ASD people lack real friendships, most kids have broken a rule or two in their lives and they don’t want to be friends with the ‘teacher’s pet’.

My Sixth point, yeah I know, there’s a lot of points, is the one that comes a little later to our attention, Hermione as relating to her female peers. Hermione does not seem to give much care about her appearance until the fourth book when she would have been fifteen. As one of the eldest girls in her year it would normally be the case that she would begin the trend of straightening hair and wearing little bits of make-up but in reality, she is one of the last. To further the point of her somewhat immature nature she seems to have very little interest in boys until Victor Krum takes an interest in her and even then she seems more interested in the thrill of being in a relationship of sorts than for the man himself. This is another side of ASD females, we often mature socially slower than we mature intellectually meaning we often don’t meet up with the feelings of our peers but more the feeling that we should try and be like them. Girls with ASD often start doing things their peers do just because they feel it’s something they should be doing rather than something they want to do.

Hermione is very one-minded when it comes to some forms of magic. For example, she does not believe Harry that the Deathly Hallows may be real, nor does she believe in Divination at leaves the subject as soon as she can. Hermione is not closed-minded, she is simply very strong in her belief systems and struggles to imagine things she has no proof of. For Hermione, if you can’t read it as fact or see it with your own eyes then it is likely, not true. You know what I’m going to say by now, this is yet another common sign in people with Autism!

I feel this list is getting a little on the long side so I’m just going to whip through some other examples of female autistic traits that apply to Hermione:

  1. Autistic girls have fewer friends
  2. They may be highly articulate and love to read
  3. Highly intelligent
  4. Doesn’t simplify
  5. Experiences trouble with lying unless absolutely necessary
  6. Finds it hard to understand why people are vindictive
  7. Philosophizes continually
  8. Escapes through categorizing and organising
  9. Suffers Anxiety issues
  10. raises hand too much in class
  11. Can come across as controlling
  12. Prepares mentally for any changes in schedule e.g. exams
  13. Highly intuitive to others feelings and highly empathetic
  14. takes criticism to heart
  15. A small compliment may have a big impact

Ok, I will be nice to you all and leave it there. I hope you can however begin to see Hermione in the light that I do and have a better understanding of girls with autism and how we may look and seem like we fit but there is something a little off about us. I would love to know your thoughts and comments on this piece of writing, can’t wait to hear if you agree or disagree and why. I hope you enjoyed this piece and hope to see you again soon,

Nox.