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Autism is late diagnosis over 50

From the article originally published by Reach in GetSurreyNews a few years ago :

by Jane Green

'"I wasn't masking at all, that's what I want to get through. I wasn't pretending. I just have never been believed and that's why I don't believe in masking. I think we all mask all the time," she added.

She insists that from her experience, autistic people don't mask any more than people who aren't autistic and that women aren’t believed when they raise the possibility of a disorder.'

'She said: "I don't believe it is just women not being believed - non-binary comes to mind - but older people over 50, professionals and the stigma that ensues, particularly from professional circles.

It is also because autism has traditionally been seen in a stereotypical way, or the very male trait from researchers doing studies, young boys or older train-focussed males or those with learning disabilities, typically.

We don't mask [our behaviour] to fit in anymore than any others, like other people with other diagnoses do, or even in daily life as medical practitioners, teachers, lawyers or even politicians.

It is just not recognised, believed or in some cases, sadly accepted. I have not changed my presentation since my diagnosis than how I presented before."

When she first got the diagnosis, she didn't believe it and would often tell random people in shops or on the street that she was autistic, just to convince herself more than anything as "I didn't believe I would get a diagnosis".

However, Jane added that the one area she thinks she and others like her mask is when it comes to pain'.

'She added: "We are told not to believe ourselves, that we're hypochondriacs. So even when I have ruptured ankles, broken and dislocated knees both at the same time I mask it unintentionally as I don't know how to express how much pain I am in.

"Again mainly women, as we're told we're not able to deal with pain but in fact deal with more than most all the time. This is where I mask."'

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