Autism Awareness: Anne Hegerty In The Jungle

Anne Hegerty I'm a Celebrity Get Me Out of Here!

This week Anne Hegerty from the TV quiz show The Chase entered the jungle in I’m a Celebrity… Get Me Out of Here!

Anne is autistic, she was diagnosed in her 40’s. Having Anne in I’m a Celebrity is great for raising awareness of autism and how autism doesn’t have to hold people back from stepping out of their comfort zones and achieving things. I just wanted to write a few words about things Anne has said about being autistic, how I think she will do in the jungle and my perspectives on those things where I can relate and share my own experiences as well, I go into much more detail of my own experiences in my various autism books including my autobiography Look Into My Eyes. I think it is great when I see autistic people positively raising awareness of what it is like to be autistic, both the challenges and the strengths and having the strength to step outside of their comfort zone. Anne being in the Jungle isn’t just great for raising awareness of autism, but importantly, raising awareness of autistic females, at the end of this blog post I share signs of autism in females to look out for.

Celebrity Hegerty

Being autistic, you grow up aware that somehow everyone around you is on one frequency and they all seem to act and think similar to each other, and you are somehow on a different frequency and have a very different view of the world. In school, it was common for me to be found in the bushes with snails and other creatures rather than mixing with other children. I did join in games children played at times. I had a small circle of friends who played tag and played football or rugby or just climbed trees. I didn’t really get on with football or rugby, I struggled with the team aspect, but I did better at tag, where I was running and escaping people, or trying to catch people, but it was me doing my own thing, not as a team, the same with climbing trees. Joining in with friends was also not often my first choice of things to be doing, but I felt it was what I was supposed to be doing.

I often felt like I had a different perception of the World. I didn’t realise how different until one day when I was about 20 I went to a club with a friend. Unknown to me that friend took some drugs that night. As we were walking back to my flat along the sea front they started talking about how beautiful the sea was, about the colours, the movement, the textures, the shapes, the way the light moved and reflected, etc. I agreed with him and held a perfectly normal conversation with him about all of this. I thought he had suddenly come to his senses and seen the World as it is, I didn’t realise he was tripping. It wasn’t until the next day when he told me that he had been tripping and that it was a strange experience because I was treating it as being the most normal thing in the World. I feel people never seem to notice all the patterns around us, the vividness of colours, the brightness of things, the patterns in sounds, different textures, the rhythms of movement, etc.

Something which Anne may struggle with being in the Jungle is surprise, change and uncertainty. Anne says that she plans everything. I mentally rehearse everything, I try to mentally rehearse as many eventualities as possible, I try to make everything as predictable as possible. The trouble with surprise, change and uncertainty is that once it hits it is difficult to centre yourself again, find composure so that you have a grounded place to build from to find a way forward. It can take a while to do this. The reaction can appear to others at times to be extreme, almost like you have had your brain scrambled by the sudden change, you don’t have a plan for it, you don’t know what you are supposed to do next or what the way forward is. If you can’t escape the situation, even if that is escaping into your mind for a time, then it can be very difficult to work out a way forward. One way forward I often find myself doing is having black and white thinking, taking control of the situation by leaving the situation and ending it there. It is common for autistic people to like certainty and feel more drawn towards facts with clear questions and answers. This can feel very safe.

A trait often associated with autistic people, and one Anne has been describe with by fellow The Chase chasers is that they are often incredibly genuine, what you see is what you get – not a mask or image of the person. There is no filter. They have a tendency to be very honest and open. This is something often commented by people who have read my Look Into My Eyes autobiography, and also something said to me by people who meet me but have known of me a while perhaps as fans of my eCourses or my YouTube channel. I am the person you see in my videos and when you interact with me online. I am not someone different in person.

Most people have multiple versions of themselves. They have the husband/wife self, the son/daughter self, the grandson/granddaughter self, the work colleague self, the friend self, the acquaintance self, the employer self, the customer self, etc. They have a version of themselves for different groups of people. Most autistic people have ‘them’ self. They have just the one self, no pretence, no different versions for different people. There may be some small variations as they grow older and perhaps learn to differentiate themselves a bit, but generally what you see is what you get. This can be reassuring for some, but it can also lead to saying things which in a given context aren’t seen by others as appropriate to say. If the autistic person has supportive friends and family who are willing to tell them when they have behaved in a way which isn’t appropriate for a situation then they can learn and increase the chances of not making that mistake again, but fundamentally, they are just the one person.

In the jungle Anne might have many ‘breakdowns’ but she is also likely to have strategies she has developed to compose herself and find ways to coping. It could be that she takes herself away from the situation for a time and separates from the group, or zones out from the outside world, or stims (does some form of self soothing or absorbing behaviour). Something I find, which Anne may also find, is that I compartmentalise things. So something may make me stressed or anxious, but if I am not focusing on it, it isn’t in my mind and in that moment it doesn’t impact on me. For example, if a relative dies I am emotional when I think about happy memories of that relative, but if I think about something else I am not sad. There is very little residual emotion carrying over from moment to moment. The same with anxiety or anger. I can walk away for a moment, get distracted by the sea, or a view, or an animal I now want to photograph, or an idea I suddenly have and the emotion is gone. It is like a very powerful single-mindedness. If Anne has this kind of experience she might be seen to struggle at one moment, even struggle a lot and yet in the next moment it is almost as if that moment hadn’t happened.

Something I already like about Anne in the jungle is that she has shown emotion – people often say autistic people lack emotion, which is just untrue, it is often overwhelming, ‘all or nothing’ and ‘black and white’. For me personally, I go from calm to anxious very quickly in that moment where it happens, with very little in between. There isn’t really a build up. This is the same with things like eye contact. Making eye contact can lead to feeling overwhelmed with emotion and information that is difficult to process and understand, so it is easier to look away to break the connection. Obviously with all of this, as the saying goes, once you’ve met one autistic person, you have met one autistic person, which is why I am sharing my experiences and how Anne might respond, because only Anne herself can truly comment on her own responses and experiences, but I just want to try to write something helpful to give some insight, at least based on my own experiences.

Anne may also accidentally insults people. She may just say what is in her mind without filtering it. The likelihood is that she is better at managing what she says now than she perhaps was when she was younger, she is likely to have learned a lot about what seems to upset people and what some of the social rules are about what you should and shouldn’t say and do, but when caught off guard it is easy to still say the wrong thing. I once talked over my wife, she picked me up on this and asked why I did it. I told her that she was boring me. That didn’t go down well and luckily it doesn’t happen often. It was just a momentary laps of control over myself. It is common for autistic people who are trying to fit in for them to talk slower or with pauses so that they have time to run things through their mind before they come out of their mouth. Other times they may talk very fast as they try to get everything out, perhaps about their interest or something they really want to talk about.

Anne has said that she has worked hard to try to learn social communication rules and to try to appear non-autistic. This will help in the jungle, but it also takes a lot of focus and mental capacity and you need to take time away from people to decompress. In a jungle camp this could be difficult for Anne to do, but because she has been open and honest about herself she is likely to have support from camp members when she needs to take time for herself.

Something likely is that others can worry more about her at times than she worries about herself. People can become very protective. I have had this, where people see me emotional and struggling, and rather than being supportive and helping me through the situation, they feel uncomfortable and want to rescue me from the situation. I think it is important to try to let Anne be in control of her own time in the jungle. She will likely have times she wants to fight or flee and just wants to escape, but at the same time she is likely to want stubbornly push forward and remain in control of herself rather than letting her feelings or circumstances control her. You don’t necessarily want to do things outside your comfort zone, you have to push yourself to do them which can trigger high anxiety and inside you just want to escape, but you try to push on anyway because you know how easy it would be to give in to the anxiety and isolate yourself from the world.

In some settings under your control and where everything is familiar you can appear calm, confident, sure of yourself, safe and assertive, but once in a different situation you can go from that to anxious, emotional and struggling and perhaps seem like a totally different person. My experience of myself is that I am who I am. What I have seen so far of Anne is the same, that she doesn’t try to pretend she is confident and not anxious when she is, she just honestly expresses herself. If things do become too much for her, she will likely just say so and leave, rather than try to say she is okay and push on. If the uncertainty becomes too great, or the situation something she feels she can’t get through she is likely to be black and white and firm on the decision to leave the jungle.

She is seen as a role model to many there is the school boy who wrote the letter to say

“Sometimes people are mean to me because I am autistic but watching you makes me see that other people can have autism too and maybe I can have a cool job like you when I’m older.”

One thing I try to do when I have taught parenting courses and when I talk to people about autism is to help them see the strengths of autistic people. I try to be a positive role model as well as being open about my struggles and about how I can be difficult for others at times as well, like not keeping in touch with friends as much as I perhaps should, not asking how others are enough, being too self absorbed in my own interests, accidentally offending people.

Some people may find watching Anne upsetting or difficult to watch, they may see it as exploitative and they may decide on her behalf that she should be pulled from the jungle. In my opinion this isn’t others decision to make. I have had people see me struggle or upset in situations and people feel a sense of empathy and want to save or protect me because of how it makes them feel. I think it shows great strength of character to be anxious, be outside of your comfort zone and decide to carry on. My view is that bravery isn’t doing something others wouldn’t feel comfortable doing, it is doing something you don’t feel comfortable doing.

I think by jumping in and saving someone who hasn’t asked to be saved is about those people, not about the person they are saving. Anne should be the one in control of her experience, not people complaining to Ofcom. ITV will have Anne and the other contestants being monitored. If she does need removing it should be because she is perhaps being too stubborn (which I have a tendency to do even when it is me that it will impact negatively on) and they should then discuss this with Anne and make a decision, not because it is difficult viewing for people. I think people should rally behind her and praise her strength, rather than want to save her because of her struggling, let Anne make this decision.

Something many autistic people experience is sensory overload, this could be tastes, smells, textures, sensations, sounds, etc. In the jungle Anne could find people being around all the time too much, also during challenges, if she has to put something in her mouth, or have something touching her, it could be that she is hypersensitive to an aspect of that. This would add an additional layer of challenge for Anne, versus just disliking having a bug in your mouth, or eating certain things, or being gunged, or being in certain environments. Anne has also mentioned having difficulty with multitasking and struggling to move attention from one thing to another. This could cause challenges during challenges where she has to think of multiple things at once or do multiple things at once, but also it could make tasks in the camp more difficult. By being open with the others in the camp, she can reduce this somewhat because the others can know she needs clear instructions and single tasks at a time to focus on.

Anne will also likely want to ration social contact. She mentioned that if she stays at a party for hours she has to go straight to bed once home (but then finds that she has violent nightmares) or she has to spend hours decompressing. She can’t do this so easily when she is in a camp living with people, so she may well try to find ways to do this, which could be to just separate off from the others for a while at times, or to zone out from everything for a while. She is likely to want to get some space from everyone. Because she has been open with everyone about being autistic this isn’t likely to be too much of a problem, if she hadn’t been open with people this behaviour can sometimes be interpreted as aloof or shy and people would make all sorts of interpretations about what they think her behaviour means.

Anne did mention that she “might drift along happy not picking up on bad atmospheres” and that this could be an advantage of her reduced awareness of picking up on social communication. Anne spoke about not really having friends, how she didn’t really want friends and couldn’t see the point in friends. She may find she quite likes having a small circle of people who are supportive and having a shared experience. It can be a challenge to manage friends and meet friends needs and the effort it can take to maintain friendships and show interest in others. For me personally, the effort all this takes is very hard to keep up. I can go months not contacting close friends because it doesn’t cross my mind. When talking with people I can have the conversations all revolving around me and fail to ask how friends are and what they have been up to and have conversation focused around them.

I think there are as many autistic females as males, but fewer are diagnosed because people don’t recognise that their behaviours might be a sign of them being autistic. Girls are often better at masking – learning how to appear ‘typical’ – by doing things like getting others to talk for them or learning some basic behavioural responses, often these fail over a longer period. For myself personally, I explain that if you met me for a brief chat you may not realise I am autistic, but if you spend any length of time with me you start to notice cracks in my facade. I think of it a bit like the Artificial Intelligence tests where humans interact with a computer and they have to decide whether they are interacting with a computer or a human. Often the computer can convince the human for a while, but gradually they get suspicious that the answers don’t quite seem right or organic, there starts to be repetition and a limited range of responses and responses which show the computer didn’t quite get what the human was talking about.

Another challenge for females being diagnosed autistic is how society thinks about the range of how males and females should behave. A quiet, withdrawn girl often doesn’t draw as much attention as a quiet withdrawn male, internally focused or unengaged girls often have behaviour interpreted as perhaps dreamy, girls are often thought of as more emotional, so a girl struggling with anxiety isn’t necessarily looked at as it perhaps being a sign of autism.

There are signs which can be looked for which could suggest someone is autistic. Having these signs doesn’t mean someone definitely is autistic, but the more of these signs you notice the greater chance the person might be, so it could be worth looking into it more if the person is struggling. These signs can apply to males, but are more likely for females and often things which at first glance people don’t think of the girl or woman with these signs as possibly being autistic, especially when the person is perhaps masking or observably people are only noticing one or two of these. For example, I have had conversations with people where they say that I seem to be communicating fine, they don’t realise that they instigated the conversation, that the whole conversation has been about me and my interests, so although if they did realise this they might put a tick next to it, the reality is most people don’t notice to look for things like this unless they have been told to look for it.

  • Limited interests or very passionate about one or a few topics/subjects
  • They might have developed ways of encouraging others to do all the talking for them or doing things for them that they find difficult
  • Sensory sensitivities, like struggling with certain sounds, brightness, movement, touch, taste, smells
  • Only talking about what they are interested in and maybe only their side of the conversation, not so interested in others responses, and maybe socially inappropriate conversations, so talking about something which isn’t appropriate for the audience (typical people are different with parents/grandparents/friends/work colleagues/managers/strangers, etc)
  • May get very anxious or emotional very quickly at times or in specific situations or circumstances or perhaps have age inappropriate ‘meltdowns’ where they suddenly become angry or react almost like a young child
  • Might have OCD like behaviours, often things like ordering and organising and patterns etc
  • Difficulty with making and keeping friends and struggling with understanding social non-verbal communication and difficulty copying others behaviours/fashion choices etc even when they wants to fit in. They are perhaps just mimicking and trying to copy rather than understanding the rules behind why certain behaviours are done or certain fashion choices are made
  • Difficulty with social situations and things like reciprocal communication and slower at responding socially including responding to teachers or parents questions, asking questions, responding to others etc, may seem quiet, shy or aloof. They may also talk very fast and give monologues about topics of interest and may not have range to their speech, it could be quite monotonous or lacking emotional expressiveness
  • May appear passive due to not knowing how to respond, so responding how they are told, or assertive when reaching what for them is a fight or flight situation where they just want to escape or to create certainty

Most of my life I was against diagnosis. I felt that I should be treated as a human being and not need a diagnosis. I should be able to say, these are the challenges I face, this is how to get the best out of me, this is who I am and how I am, and then everyone treats me with respect. But that, unfortunately isn’t life. I ended up needing to get a diagnosis. Diagnosis helps to get support and be able to help others understand as well as helping your own understanding. It also helps people realise you aren’t trying to just excuse your behaviours etc, but instead are able to say here is the explanation for my behaviours.

Society isn’t currently really set up to support autistic people. Places are busy, noisy, often chaotic. Shops and other locations are overwhelmingly bright, people don’t follow rules that they teach, people are chaotic and confusing. One driver may stop to let you cross a road, and another driver may not, sometimes at the same time! So, you don’t know whether you should walk or not. What would be easier is the drivers sticking to their rules and me sticking to my rules of crossing roads as taught as a child. Cinemas and other events play sound really loud, people rarely stick to times and to plans they have made, they run late, they make vague plans rather than specific plans, people also communicate vaguely and expect others to understand the specifics. Things one person finds easy, another finds difficult, there is so much in society which makes being a part of that society hard work and for me personally, my default setting is to be around animals, which, unlike people, don’t use multilevel communication, they are just pure, they don’t wear masks, and to be in nature where everything is calmer, slower paced and more predictable.

What are your thoughts on things I’ve said in this blog post and on Anne Hegerty being in the jungle? Let me know in the comments below.

9 responses to “Autism Awareness: Anne Hegerty In The Jungle”

  1. This is the first of your posts that I’ve read and I didn’t know anything about Anne until now. However what strikes me is that the more I read about Autism the more I wonder if my 19 year old son is Autistic. He identifies as having anxiety but is resistant to the idea of Autism. But he is struggling so much right now! And he cannot figure out how to manage his anxiety. He’s at a crucial stage, trying to figure out how to become a functioning adult, and each time he has a failure in becoming an adult it’s like a blow to his self esteem. I just think a diagnosis would help him find his way. But I’m not sure how to talk to him about it, because if he starts to feel like I’m pushing my own ideas on him he will dig in and become more resistant. Thank you for this and I will be reading more of your posts.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It is difficult when you know something might be helpful to someone but they don’t want to hear it. Ultimately, people make their own decisions, we can’t make others do what we would like them to do. I would likely raise the idea of it, not saying ‘I think you are autistic…’ but just raising the specifics where traits you observe match autism and that having a diagnosis could lead to greater support. I would then leave some information lying around that he could read if he was interested. Beyond this, it is entirely his decision and his right to decide his path.
      From a point of view of managing anxiety and other challenges, you don’t need a diagnosis to help with these. Most of my life I didn’t have a diagnosis, and as I mention throughout my autobiography ‘Look Into My Eyes’ I taught myself skills. As an 8 year old I started meditating which helped me to learn to manage my attention, it helped me to be able to focus on one thing and shut everything else out, so I started learning to manage sensory overload and anxiety. Then as a teenager I started learning hypnosis which taught me non-verbal behaviour, so I was able to start recognising when people were happy, sad, anxious, angry, when they liked me or disliked me, when people were interested in what I had to say, or not interested in what I had to say. I still don’t get this all right, but I do significantly better than I ever did. Then in my early twenties I started learning counselling skills and communication skills in relation to dealing with challenging behaviour of children and teens and in relation to teaching parenting courses. This counselling training taught me about using ‘I messages’, it taught me about social communication, how to listen, how to appear interested in what others say, how to ask questions to get people to talk about themselves, etc.
      So, before having any diagnosis I had learned so much which helped me manage anxiety and anger and in social situations. For most of that time I think a diagnosis would have been helpful, with things like getting support around education and around work, but it wasn’t until a few years ago where I felt I had to go for an assessment. Prior to that I muddled through and found my own solutions.
      So with or without a diagnosis your son can learn to reduce anxiety and manage anxiety and other challenges. He can learn things like meditation, communication skills, relaxation, mental rehearsal, etc. He doesn’t need a diagnosis to do these things, he just needs to want to do these things. If he decides not to put in the effort to learn these things or whatever it is that would work for him, that is his decision. What is helpful is supporting him in identifying skills he needs and how to develop those skills.
      My way of working with people which largely avoids resistance is to come alongside them and always start from a place of agreement and work forward together, rather than be the one who creates the resistance by putting up a barrier or challenge etc… I call it a collaborative communication approach. I try to start each disagreement/challenge etc, with ‘yes, and…’ or some other form of agreeing, and then figure out how to move forward from there. I always accept that someone’s reality is 100% real to them and so I want to respect this and work with this rather than try to convince someone that my reality and perspective is the right one.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Excellent! You couldn’t of wrote that better…
    My son is under assessment for Autism, myself being Autistic trained I’ve noticed for a long time. I like how you explain not everyone is the same and how they can teach themselves to cope when they aren’t really.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you. One of my biggest personal frustrations has been appearing one way and so when you then tell people that actually you are struggling inside they don’t believe you, or that you do. I have a friend who tells me I’m lying about finding situations make me anxious, or that I see things a certain way, because he says, he saw no sign of this, I came across as confident, or calm, etc. He doesn’t accept that I will have been focusing on my breathing and focusing on holding my focus etc, to appear how I need to in that situation, and that afterwards this took so much out of me that I need to take time for myself etc.

      Whereas my wife will see all of this, not just the image.

      I like what Elvis Presley said, “being a man is easy, living up to your image is hard”.

      This is so true, holding yourself as an image because you know you need to behave a certain way etc, is very difficult. For non-autistic people there are things which they do automatically that the autistic person has to learn to do and then consciously apply as it doesn’t happen automatically for them.

      People also don’t necessarily realise that you can be confident in one area of your life because you are just talking about something you are interested in and not outside of your comfort zone. I can appear confident when I’m talking about my experiences of being autistic or about hypnosis etc, but as soon as we get to a lunch break and I have to ‘socialise’ I hide in a corner and don’t talk to anyone, or isolate myself because although I came across as confident when talking I was also overwhelmed by lights, movement, etc, and need to shut stimulation out for a bit to ‘decompress’ or centre myself before I talk again etc… So people are seeing the controlled version of me in these settings where I’m trying to be engaged and focused in the right places etc…

      All the best

      Liked by 1 person

  3. You’ve described myself in this article. I am only starting to understand myself in my forties now but unable to communicate as a child and always having a sense I was abnormal throughout life has been damaging and I am in the process of trying to get a doctor to refer me to get a diagnosis. Like you I didn’t think a diagnosis would be helpful but knowing more about myself and the people around me knowing the daily struggle I go through may benefit me in the long run. I loved the tree climbing too and hated having to interact amongst other children. I often offend and don’t understand why or how it happened. I have social anxiety and more sensitive to noise and light. Everything needs to be in order and planned and trying to get me to stop something I’ve started is nearly impossible. I would like to be able to get some sort of help though I don’t see why I have to try and fit in for acceptance especially since I have tried so hard all my life without any success. More help with coping and dealing with daily life. I also feel I can’t tell people I am autistic even though I know for sure I am. My partner knew before I did (she works with people with autism). I feel I will be judged as I have not got a diagnosis and I’ve heard that can take years if ever. I want people to understand me but not think I am jumping on a bandwagon of people self diagnosing. Sorry if this is a bit of a rant and not what you are asking for. I liked your article.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Hi Claire,
      Thank you for sharing. I would love to live in a world where people treated people as individuals regardless without people needing to have a diagnosis of anything. I always told people about myself but never said I was autistic because I didn’t want to self-diagnose. I thought I was probably autistic so it was only when I was really struggling, depressed and suicidal and experiencing discrimination and feeling trapped in my job and in the discrimination that I felt a diagnosis would help me to address these things. As it turned out I was made redundant before the diagnosis went through.
      I have felt that by having an official diagnosis I have been able to be clearer with people about me being me. Before, I would explain about myself but some people would dismiss it as me trying to cover up ‘bad’ behaviour like when I accidentally offend people. With the diagnosis, when I say ‘I’m autistic’ people show more interest, they often want to know more and they are more accepting of me being me. I couldn’t tell people I was autistic (even though I was sure I was) until I had an official diagnosis.
      I struggle with the idea of having to fit in, but the alternative for me would be to live in the woods and almost never interact with people. Again, having a diagnosis has actually led to me not putting so much pressure on myself to conform to an image of how I should be. People generally are more accepting when I sit in a corner not interacting, whereas before diagnosis people would expect I have to mix and join in, but to join in would be exhausting, so this is a good thing.
      For me it took almost a year to get the diagnosis, for adults it typically takes 6-12 months from the GP making a referral to having the assessment. In my case I was told at the assessment I was autistic and that it would take a month or two for them to write the report up confirming this. The main thing (I’ll do a blog post about it soon) is how you seek the diagnosis. If you just go to a GP and ask to be referred they don’t necessarily refer you, they can challenge you and tell you they don’t believe you are autistic, if they do refer you they may not write what they need on the referral letter so you end up with the assessment team rejecting the letter because it doesn’t include any information to convince them you might be autistic. So, you want to be aware of these things and know what to do.

      All the best

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Thanks Dan,
        I guess you didn’t go through your GP but actually went privately? I saw my GP yesterday and he said he’ll refer me but it means going through a few channels before diagnosis (I.e. Mental health team, psychologist etc). He said this is the way it’s done and it can be complex. I guess it’s good so they can do things thoroughly? But also daunting as I would hate to be accidentally misdiagnosed (I have not had the best experience with the NHS and have been misdiagnosed before). Sorry for late reply. Claire


      2. Hi Claire,
        No, I went through the GP. You don’t go through other channels. The GP makes a referral to the autism assessment (that assesses adults), they contact you directly and send you some forms to fill in (multiple choice and long form answers) then you have an assessment which lasts a couple of hours and ideally includes bringing along a parent (they will find a way to work around this if you don’t have a parent for them to talk to) and then at the assessment they will tell you whether you are autistic, and a few weeks later you get that in writing when they have written up their assessment (I’ve done a recent blog post on this which goes into more detail).
        I have spent the best part of two decades supporting autistic people and their families as well as seeking diagnosis myself, so I know that the process doesn’t involve needing a mental health assessment or any other assessments, you ask to be referred for an autism assessment and the referral is made to the team who do the autism assessments (which could be a mental health team, or it could be a different team of psychologists). It takes about 6-12 months usually (for me it was closer to 12 months) from the GP making the referral and getting your assessment.
        All the best


  4. Steve Charlemagne Avatar
    Steve Charlemagne

    Excellent blog. I was diagnosed with autism late in life, in 2003 when I was 38. In addition I’ve got severe depression, anxiety and high risk type 2 diabetes. Most of the things said in the blog I can related to.

    Liked by 2 people

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About Me

I am a #1 best-selling autistic self-published author, I have had over 150,000 books sold, over 15 million YouTube video views, and my sleep story mp3’s have been downloaded and streamed over 5,000,000 times. I have created many online hypnosis, hypnotherapy and parenting training courses and have an extensive background working in child and family support, and helping around sleep, anxiety and stress.

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