Understanding Autism

One-Eighty hosted a year 10 student, Rosie*, on work experience for 3 days. Rosie was keen to share her personal experiences of autism to help other people understand more about autism and how every experience is unique. This is her reflection:

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Rosie’s positives of having autism:

  • Great memory

  • Follow rules

  • Don’t try to fit in with everyone else

  • Honest (perhaps a little too honest)

  • Practical and a realist

  • Happy with my own company

Some difficulties of having autism:

  • Making friends

  • Social situations

  • Understanding jokes or sarcasm

  • Sensory issues – bright lights, loud noises, texture, taste

  • Understand social cues – they usually struggle interpreting how someone might be feeling

  • Showing and expressing empathy towards others

Tips:

  • Understand that everyone with autism is different from each other – people may have high-functioning or low-functioning autism

  • If you know someone with autism, try to make them feel comfortable in a group – this could be starting a conversion with them because someone with autism may feel that they want to say something but they don’t feel confident or comfortable to actually say what they are thinking

  • Try not be offended if they say something hurtful – they are probably just being honest and not realising the impact it might have on that person

Thank you to Rosie for openly sharing her tips and experiences, to allow others to learn more and, understand and support those with autism!

*Name has been changed to protect the identity of the individual.

Amelia Hartley