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“Our Own Little Worlds”

Photo © Jill at Blue Moonbeam Studio | Flickr / Creative Commons [image: A wooden gate in a botanical garden, with the Austin skyline in the background, as seen reflected in a crystal ball.] Devin S. Turk twitter.com/AuroralAutistic As I have become more involved with the autistic self-advocacy movement, I’ve found myself paying more and more attention to how non-autistic populations talk about us. I have often heard my beautiful, vibrant community described by non-autistics with words like “disease” and “epidemic.” Even if it’s not as blatant, the language our wider society uses to talk about autistic people is reflective of a deep-seated discomfort and even disgust with the non-normative.  One example is the idea that autistic people are in our “own little worlds.” “They’re in their own little world” alludes to the intensely ableist trope of the “mysterious autistic” person, someone who is “trapped” within their “Autism-ridden” body or…

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Autism, Transmasculine Identity, and Invisibility

The Transgender Pride Flag By SVG file Dlloyd based on Monica Helms design [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons [image: A flag with five horizontal stripes. The center stripe is white, flanked by two pink stripes, then a light blue stripe at the top and the bottom. Devin S. Turk @devinst97 Everyone in my life knows that I’m transgender. Comparatively, very few people know about another major part of me: that I’m autistic. At age twenty-one, I’ve come to understand that many of my young adult years have centered around trying to bridge the gap between my two ways of being: The way that I present myself to the world, and the way that I perceive who I am. I imagine that someday, hopefully soon, those two components of my life won’t feel far apart. And hey, sharing this essay might even help. I realized I was trans when I was…