What is it like to have autism? It is one thing to observe behaviours from the outside, it is another to get a firsthand account from someone about what it is like on the inside.
One of the best books I have read on this is Pretending to Be Normal by Liane Holliday Willey. In this book, the author describes her experiences as person with Asperger’s Syndrome who did not get officially diagnosed later in life.
Asperger’s is no longer a diagnosis and is now considered high functioning autism. Willey shares what she thinks about this change of terminology. Spoiler alert: She doesn’t like it.
Willey’s story is of a woman who knew she was different but didn’t know why she was different. It was not until her daughter was diagnosed that she had a label for why she felt the way she did.
The book is a fantastic read that really helps neuro-typicals understand the sensory issues that a person with autism experiences. When a person with autism “acts out” it is not a random behaviour, it is always because something has triggered it. This book will give you ideas about that meltdown triggers you witness.
I highly recommend Pretending to Be Normal for people who have or people who care for those with Asperger’s Syndrome or high functioning autism.