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Living with Autism as an Adult Women

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47-year-old Laura James is a successful author and journalist that is married to her husband, Tim, and has four adult children. James loves to write, is a big fan of cats, and is really into fashion. She is also very quick witted.


Laura James also has Autistic Spectrum Disorder also known as autism.


At a hospital stay in London, Laura was very baffled when a young nurse brought this idea in 2015.


Laura was in the hospital to have some tests done for a rare tissue disorder, Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome, and was returning to her hospital room when she had a meltdown.


“I just had an overwhelming meltdown … a proper explosive meltdown,” Laura shared. The nurse that was taking care of Laura made her go into a quiet room and she told her, “don’t worry, we see a lot of autistic people here.”


The nurse’s comment confused Laura, and she thought that the nurse was mixing her up with some other patient. Once Laura was told about the different symptoms autism has, she thought, “that’s so me.” Laura thought autism was only a boys disease, a stereotype she believed all her life until now. Although autism is about 4.5 times more common in boys, it can still happen to any female.


Through her life, Laura has been misdiagnosed several times. When she was younger, her doctor thought she had an eating disorder. She was also told that she had hyperventilation syndrome, another misdiagnosis that was made when she was in her twenties. Other doctors thought she could have generalized anxiety disorder.


What the doctors didn’t know is that Laura’s eating disorders along with her anxiety were signs of her autism and have been misunderstood for forty years.


Laura says that although she did not know she had autism, as a young girl she felt different than the rest of her friends.


“I distinctly remember as a child feeling different and behaving differently to other girls. I simply remember thinking that everybody else seemed to kind of get it. Everyone else seemed to know what to do and how to do it, like there was an instruction manual that I’d lost and they all had.”
Autism is something that many people like Laura are unaware of. Autistic people are all around us, and Laura encourages everyone to bring awareness to this growing mental condition.

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Living with Autism as an Adult Women