When things go wrong for autistic people, it tends to be because other people’s understanding is lacking. Whether it’s a child having a meltdown in a shopping centre, an adult struggling to find a job or a parent trying to make their local school more autism-friendly, better public understanding can make all the difference.
It’s often public spaces that autistic people find hardest. They can be overwhelming, crowded, unpredictable, loud and bright. And when people feel overloaded by too much information, they often encounter a public that simply doesn’t understand them. We need to challenge the myths, misconceptions and stereotypes that make autistic people feel so isolated and make society feel so unwelcoming. Even a small amount of autism understanding can transform people’s experiences.