Do Autistic People Know They're Autistic?

Today you'll find out if autistic people know they're'd be surprised what the answer is.

steven zauderer
Steven Zauderer
September 20, 2023
min read

Do Autistic People Know They're Autistic?

It's a common misconception that autistic people are unaware of their condition. The truth is, many autistic people are very much aware of their autism and how it affects them. In fact, some say that it's through understanding and acceptance of their autism that they've been able to lead fulfilling lives.

Do Autistic People Know They're Autistic?

Do autistic people know they're autistic, or do they just think of themselves as different from everyone else without knowing why?

It is a question that has been debated and studied for decades in the autism community; do autistic people know they are autistic, or do they just think of themselves as different from everyone else without knowing why? This has proven to be a difficult query to answer since the concept of being “autistic” is subjective.

In experimentations with children on the spectrum, researchers have found that most often those children who are aware of why they learn differently don’t necessarily consider themselves as “autistic” so much as just another kind of person.

It appears that awareness of one’s differences can vary greatly depending on an individual's individual attitude toward them and also their level of understanding. Therefore, it appears that while some individuals may be aware they are autistic, others may not fully understand why they have difficulties connecting with people socially or engaging in conversation - yet still realize they are ‘different.'

How can parents and loved ones support someone with autism in their everyday life?

One of the most powerful ways that family and friends can show their support for someone with autism is through providing understanding, compassion, and acceptance.

This starts by simply taking time to learn about autism and the individual's specific needs.

A better understanding helps cultivate a supportive environment and serves as an invitation to build deeper relationships.

Additionally, extended loved ones should always be available to listen without judgement to any issues or needs the person has. It is also important that family and friends validate the individual’s experiences rather than comparing them with those of neurotypical people. Supporting someone with autism can be both rewarding and important for maintaining mental health for all parties involved.

What are some common misconceptions about autism that need to be debunked?

A common misconception about autism is that it is a single condition with a fixed set of symptoms and behaviors. In reality, autism is a broad spectrum that includes a wide range of conditions, all of which have unique symptoms and needs.

It is also not true that all autistic people share the same behaviors or preferences, as the spectrum is quite diverse. Furthermore, autistics are often mistakenly thought to be unable to experience emotions or connect with other people. On the contrary, autistic individuals possess an amazing capacity for empathy and connection.

Lastly, there is no 'cure' for autism; while therapeutic interventions can help to manage symptoms, autistics should not be expected to strive towards becoming neurotypical in order to gain acceptance in society. Debunking these myths can open conversations about how best to support those on the Autistic Spectrum and lead to an increased understanding of their unique perspectives and experiences.

What is autism and how is it diagnosed?

Autism is a neurological disorder that affects how individuals perceive the world around them and interact with others. Autism can manifest in various forms, ranging from mild to moderate to severe. It is most often diagnosed in toddlers before the age of 3, due to development differences compared to peers.

Symptoms, such as difficulty communicating, struggling with social interaction, repetitive behaviors, and sensory sensitivities are used for diagnosis of autism.

If parents suspect their child has autism or may be on the spectrum, consulting with a health professional who specializes in developmental stressors is recommended.

Comprehensive evaluations by a team of specialists often yields more reliable results; however, there is no cure yet for autism and progress can look different for each individual.

How do people with autism understand the world around them differently than neurotypical people?

Everyone experiences the world differently, and this is especially true for people with autism. Those on the autism spectrum often process, perceive and interact in significantly different ways than neurotypical people due to how their brains are wired.

For example, they may struggle to comprehend nonverbal cues like facial expressions or body language, making social interactions difficult. They may also experience the world inside and out more intensely than those who are not on the autism spectrum.

This can be both a positive and a negative according to the individual. For some, it expands opportunities for learning where others may feel overwhelmed by the results of such heightened awareness. Understanding these nuances is key in helping autistic individuals better navigate the world around them.


Autism is a neurological condition that affects the way someone processes information and interact with the world around them. It's a lifelong condition, but with early intervention and support, people with autism can lead happy, healthy lives.

There's still a lot we don't understand about autism, but debunked some common misconceptions and offered some tips for supporting someone you love with autism in their everyday life.


steven zauderer

CEO of CrossRiverTherapy - a national ABA therapy company based in the USA.

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