If life were a dodgeball game, with a blind person in it. And the blind person was stuck in the middle of the game. And they said, “I’m blind”. You would understand them telling you that they are blind. They don’t want you throwing a ball at their face. You wouldn’t want to throw a ball in their face. You would understand them being flustered at having balls whizzing by them every which way when they couldn’t see. And even if they somehow caught the ball, and threw it – and the throw was wild, you would understand. They can’t be expected to know where to throw when they can’t see. So you would understand. And if new people came into the game, and they said “I’m blind” again… And they said “Please don’t throw balls at me”, you would understand. And you wouldn’t begrudge them saying “I’m blind”, no matter how many times they said it. And you would try to understand what being blind meant to them – being stuck in the middle of a dodgeball game.
So say you are autistic, and nobody wants to hear that you’re autistic, but yet you are, and you need them to hear that you are. And you need them to believe you, and understand you, and realize what that means. So say that ball is not a ball, but is conversation, and the blind person, instead is autistic. And they say “I’m autistic, please don’t throw words in my face. Please understand that I can’t see what they mean, and I don’t know what to do. And please understand that when words are whizzing every which way by my face, that I find them confusing, and don’t know what to do”. And if they say “I’m autistic” over again, perhaps think that they are saying it again because people are still throwing balls at them, and they still don’t know what to do. And maybe instead of getting annoyed about them saying “I’m autistic”, maybe instead of saying “So what”, you could imagine what it might feel like to be in their place, and maybe you could think about how you might make it easier to be them.