MyODP News Online

The Similarities Between Autism and Lockdown

A picture of four sticky notes on a wall reading "Stay Home - Be Safe - Keep your distance - Don't go out"We wanted to share some food for thought with an interesting perspective from a woman with autism named Liv. Liv posted an article, What Lockdown Can Teach Us About Being Autistic, that highlights the similarities between the lived experience of autistic people and COVID-19 imposed lockdowns.

She makes comparisons about some of the most prominent difficulties associated with autism and describes how neurotypical people may be facing some of these same issues as part of being in lockdown. She organizes her thoughts around those difficulties including:

  • change and uncertainty
  • rules and rigid thinking
  • routine
  • sensory processing 
  • social isolation
She ends the article with this powerful message:

“So when we return to some semblance of normality, I hope you will remember what ‘normal’ life can be like for the neurodiverse. If you see someone resisting change, consider that they may not be awkward or stubborn. If you encounter someone who seems unable to adopt a different point of view or alter their routine, empathize with the anxiety and exhaustion they may be experiencing. If you are perplexed by someone unable to understand what you are saying, do not think this reflects their level of intelligence. And if you know there are people in your community who are alone, take the time to enter their world and find out how you can connect with them”

Please send any suggestions or questions related to this article or requests for additional resources to RA-basprovidersupprt@pa.gov