Making our own maps to understanding and self-acceptance
by Katie Munday
Academia and wider society often perceives us Autistic people as being ‘black and white thinkers’, suggesting that we think in restricted and binary fashions. We are often (wrongly) understood as being male, cisgender and heterosexual, or genderless beings with no passion, love or sexuality to speak of.
Yet here we are making up a disproportionate percentage of the LGBTQ+ community!
Far from restricted in our thinking, many of us are incredibly nuanced in our understanding of sexuality and gender and feel very at home in queer fluidity. We don’t see ourselves and our experiences reflected in the mainstream, so we create our own queer landscapes.
Many of us understand and enjoy the journey of gender and sexuality, even when tumultuous, as we know they are a lifelong expedition. On these journeys sometimes we know the way, sometimes we get lost and sometimes we go in several different directions at once.
Our journeys and transitions are valid and beautiful and allow us to live out our queerness every day. Through map sharing we make queerness more comfortable and accessible to our neurokin, showing others that it is legitimate to have one foot in the cishet camp and one in the queer camp–and that there is an ability to move quite quickly and easily between the two. Exploring these landscapes, we know that we can be aromantic and asexual, but that we are those on our own terms. Far from black and white thinkers we are the few who will ultimately change the state of systemic queerphobia bringing with us a more colourful way of being.