Am I autistic or am I Dyspraxic? (and why I won’t be rushing for a diagnosis)

It’s a question that gets me wondering every Autism awareness week: do I have autism?

It’s a question I used to ask myself in my teens. Yet I didn’t pursue a diagnosis out of fear, and not really knowing where to go. Roll onto a few days after my 19th birthday, I was diagnosed with Dyspraxia.

Dyspraxia carries a number of social traits, some of which cross over with traits associated with being on the Autism spectrum. However, people can be diagnosed with both Dyspraxia and Autism. According to NICE guidelines, I’d actually meet the criteria for diagnosis.

So, why do I continually not pursue a diagnosis? In light of the recent channel 4 programme “Am I autistic?” I have seen a lot of my fellow Dyspraxics either relived or terrified that they’ve seen the program, and thought “Oh God that’s me!”. I’ve talked about the positives of Dyspraxia before. I embrace my “weirdness” and have fears about approaching a GP to essentially pathologize my behaviour into a category, that means it’s not “normal” (again, to touch on previous blogs, whatever the Hell normal is)

So it’s Autism awareness week. I’m glad that it’s being given plenty of coverage. Even if a few more people take solace, like I did with my Dyspraxia diagnosis, in pursuing an autism diagnosis, then autism awareness week has done its job! ❤️

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