In the online communities I am a part of, there has been an increase in the conversations happening related to growing up in the church as an autist. For my entire adulthood, I have been actively processing the experiences I had in the church growing up, the experiences I now attribute to my autism, and my sense of self - but always separately. It's only recently, at least partially because of the community of other adult autists who have been on the same journey, that I have started to consider the intricate overlap between all of these experiences and parts of me in a way that actually makes much more sense.
Whitney Storey Blog
I can count on one hand the number of times I, as a cis-White woman, have been a minority in any space I have been while in the United States. Growing up in this way means that while I was aware of some differences that exist between myself and my non-White peers, I never really came face-to-face with the ripple effects of this way of living until my young-adult years.
Once a week I prepare to go to a place that most people probably never imagine themselves choosing to go - my local jail. I have been going to the jail once a week for over a decade, and it is so much a part of my normal routine that I often forget how unusual it is - that is, until I see looks of surprise, confusion, and concern from people after hearing me say, "I'm on my way to the jail," or ,"I just got out of the jail."
Growing up I made a number of assumptions about who I was going to be and what my life would be like in adulthood. I assumed I would go to college, meet a nice man, get married shortly after graduation, and begin my family as a stable and capable professional - a working wife and mother. Of course, things aren't that simple. It has been an incredibly bumpy ride.