Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Help Me - I'm Becoming an Autistic Adult!

Come May, it'll be a year since I graduated from USC with my Masters of Social Work. A full year since I left the confines of school and was thrown headfirst into the wider world to fend for myself. Now as I have mentioned before, I got pretty lucky as far of my transition post-grad school into working life in a pretty inclusive environment with some helpful strategies to ease my new responsibilities of bill paying, budgeting, and schedule management, among other things. And all of this wasn't just sprung upon me unexpectedly upon graduation - my parents spent years teaching me various life skills such as cooking, health care, and managing my money (which I was horrible at until I realized my pay check was gonna cover my rent and other bills previously paid for by my parents). I had also been living on my own for the past four years and thus had to work out how to care for myself outside parental supervision and care. And I knew how to work out bus routes from college before getting my driver's license at age 23. So I guess I was more prepared to adjust to adulthood than I previously thought I was.

But many autistic people aren't so prepared for that adjustment. In fact, becoming an autistic adult is fraught with challenges. And that's largely because autistic people face a world that is not built for nor ready to accept their needs and wants.