Using Autistic Identity First Language Matters.

Do you say “autistic” or “with autism”? Identity first or person first language? 

As a parent to three autistic sons, in the past I have used “with autism” or that they “had autism”. 

Reading and Research

But then I started to read, research and learn.

Through my reading and research and lived experience I realised that I was “autistic”, later receiving a formal identification as an “autistic” individual. 

I started to really think about the terminology used around the words autism and autistic and realised that often the person first connotations of autism were steeped in a medicalised hue of autism. 

Moving away from the Medical Model of Autism

My own experience as an autistic individual has taught me that everything that is good about me, everything that makes me, “me” is because I am autistic. 

I am the same person I was as a young child, older now, more aware and hopefully a little wiser. 

Autism is all of who I am.

When I was born, I was born autistic, I am neurodivergent. I am different. I am ME. 

I did not arrive into the world with autism in tow. I was born autistic. I am autistic. 

I know that for many it can be confusing as to which terminology to use. 

Research has shown that most autistic individuals prefer identity first language, however if you are unsure, ask. 💜 

Follow my autistic journey over on my instagram.