The purpose of this site is to give you the latest information and insight into the world of female autism.
My name is Kristen and I was inspired to create this site after being diagnosed as autistic in my 30’s. Though I had seen many skilled doctors, mental health professionals, and other healthcare workers throughout my life, none of them had ever once suspected autism. I was labelled shy, gifted, intense, sensitive, reserved, slightly eccentric, but never autistic.
How come? What is it about me that makes my autism invisible? And why did it take so long for someone to finally see autism in the ways I express myself and inhabit this world? These are the types of questions I explore here.
I invite you to subscribe and be part of the conversation.
As it turns out, I’m not alone in my experience of being completely shocked by the words, “Maybe you’re autistic.” According to my psychologist, the most common profile of someone making an appointment for an autism assessment these days is a middle-aged woman whose life may be falling apart. Perhaps she’s felt like she’s never fit in for as long as she can remember and she just wants answers.
I am writing this to you and for you, because I believe your training (at least when it comes to autism) was not as comprehensive as it should have been. If you had received the right information and knew what to look for, there would be no reason for me to be writing to you today.
The female autism phenotype is a presentation of autism frequently displayed by females, but also by some males, gender fluid, and afab (assigned female at birth) individuals.
This particular presentation of autism (or set of autistic presentations) is often missed by seasoned therapists, psychologists, doctors, and even those who specialize in autism assessment and diagnosis. So you’re not alone and it’s not your fault.
That said, it’s a problem we have to work hard to fix. Together. And the time is now.
Individuals presenting with the female autism phenotype are frequently misdiagnosed with borderline personality disorder, bipolar disorder, or similar. While these conditions can co-exist, they are rare. Autistic females often experience co-occurring anxiety and/or depression. Many have long-standing PTSD.
Since suicide and severe depression are exceedingly common in this population, it is up to you — the healthcare professional — to be as informed as possible about autism in females.
And I sincerely want to help.
I want to help you:
- Be aware of the more subtle ways autism can manifest,
- Detect autism in patients and clients who may not be seeing you for an autism assessment,
- Expand on what you learned about autism in college, university, or medical school,
- Do away with harmful myths and stereotypes about autism,
- Show up with a full heart and open mind for some of the most sensitive, sweet, talented, unique, and incredible individuals on the planet.
Please join me.
And if you have a question or concern, please don’t hesitate to contact me.
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We have created a global directory of psychologists who are trained in diagnosing autism in adults, and specifically autism in women and those who identify as female.