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5 Ways to Find Autism Acceptance in Adulthood

Accept, Understand Empower

Finding acceptance for who you are as someone on the autism spectrum can be challenging as a child. Knowing this, countless resources have been created for Autism Acceptance Month in April on how to build a more inclusive environment around students. 

However, once you enter adulthood, the resources and programs aren’t as prevalent, which can lead to a more isolating feeling. 

As you transition into the adult autism world, there are ways to find acceptance and find communities in which you can truly be you. The most important step in this journey, though, is accepting yourself and all the admirable attributes you bring to the people around you.

Recognize and Uphold Your Boundaries

At this point in your autism journey, you likely know what you need to feel most regulated, and what your preferences are. You may know, for instance, that going to a crowded professional basketball game would not be an enjoyable experience for you, or that after a certain amount of socializing, you need some alone time.

Your mental health is more important than putting yourself through sensory overload to please others. Over time, you will find that friends will accept the boundaries you uphold, and will even work with you to decide on an activity you both can enjoy.

Connect With Others on the Autism Spectrum

Finding and connecting with other autistic adults can help you feel less alone and more understood. There are many online and in-person groups where you can meet people who share similar experiences and perspectives. 

Try social media platforms that offer some of these groups, research support groups in your area, or look for virtual meet-ups. By befriending more neurodivergent adults, you might find yourself more accepting of your own attributes, and have less of an urge to mask, or continuously explain, certain needs and behaviors.

Advocate for Accommodations When Needed

As an autistic individual, it’s important to advocate for your needs and rights. This could mean communicating your needs with friends, family, or coworkers, or seeking accommodations in school or the workplace. 

If you need to take a college exam in an environment with fewer distractions, make sure your professor knows. Some individuals on the autism spectrum find it easier to record classes or trainings so they can focus on listening to the speaker rather than taking notes. 

These requests will only set you up for success, leading to more acceptance for you and your needs. Advocating for yourself can also help reduce stigma and promote understanding of autism overall.

Embrace Your Strengths 

Focusing on your strengths and interests can help build your self-esteem and increase your confidence. This could mean pursuing a hobby or even a job that aligns with your strengths, or simply embracing the unique way in which you see the world.

And it doesn’t stop there. Employers, professors, and even friends will admire the strong attention to detail you might possess, the out-of-the-box thinking you use to approach challenges, your innate sense of justice, or your honesty. Whichever qualities you have as an autistic individual will find appreciation as an adult.

Love Your Authentic Self 

Finding acceptance in adulthood starts with accepting yourself. As you bring more and more understanding and compassionate people into your community, your compassion for your authentic self will grow. The more love you have for yourself, the more love will be drawn to you.

The transition from childhood to adulthood for those on the autism spectrum can be a tricky one. Gersh Autism created Gersh Experience  day and residential programs  to help those going through this transition, providing them study skills, independent living skills, and socialization. If this sounds like a good fit, reach out here.


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