The Timeliness Of An Autistic Trait

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There is a saying in the autistic community, “When you’ve met one person with autism, you’ve met one person with autism.”

Some autistic quirks and characteristics, are harder to pin down than others. What is true for one person, is not for the next.

The autistic relationship with time and schedules is one of those characteristics. As with many things, it can be something obsessed about, or completely overlooked as unimportant.

Time can mean scheduling. This is important if you have a child that lives by the clock.

A time delay or change of plans can be the trigger for a major meltdown.

Other people with autism can get so involved inspecial interests that they completely lose track of time. They may forget to eat or be up well past midnight working on a project.

For some autistics, time, itself, becomes an obsession. They may actually wait outside of an event, for several minutes, to arrive exactly on time.

For social events in general, some autistic people like to arrive early, when few people are present to gradually acclimate to the environment. Others like to arrive late and disappear anonymously into the crowd.

It seems that each autistic person has their own relationship with time. Like all relationships, it has its challenges.

It can be an abusive slave-driver, or a friendly co-worker.

In the case of the late-night meal skipper, it can be neglected and ignored until it is too late.

Autistic time is flexible, and sometimes, non-existent.

Perhaps this is why so many on the spectrum are fans of the “Dr. Who” television series.

He has special interests, a handy way to escape an unpleasant environment, and a unique and creative experience of time.

He’s probably an Aspie.


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