There are a lot of misconceptions about how autistic people handle the pandemic situation. Most people believe that individuals with autism love isolation because they often feel the need to be alone. Well, somehow, it is true. However, it does not mean that autistic people do not feel sad and lonely from time to time. Honestly, most of them struggle with that aspect, especially now that they are experiencing heightened social limitations.
Most of the time, it confuses many people, especially those who try their best to understand and accommodate the autistic ones. Often, people leave them alone, thinking they need space. There’s the assumption that autistic individuals prefer it to be that way. Unfortunately, the real problem is that autistic individuals cannot express themselves that well. Most of the time, it is hard for them to convince people to stay by their sides. Autistic individuals are afraid to admit that they do not want to be alone.
But not all autistic individuals are the same. Some can express themselves in a way that others can understand easily. However, it does not guarantee that these people’s mental health will not go down after that. That is because most autistic individuals are not used to change. So when they try and make even simple adjustments on the way they express themselves, many behavioral issues can come out. It is a bit weird how autistic people deal with others because they can show mixed emotions in one particular circumstance. Perhaps that explains why the majority of people entirely want to leave them alone.
The Autistic Life Under Home Quarantine
Autistic people somehow function because they follow specific routines. But now that there’s a global health crisis, everything around them becomes way too challenging. Due to the drastic change, these people force themselves to do things they are not used to. Quite often, even walking outside for a couple of blocks becomes a struggling decision for them. They worry too much that they can no longer feel the desire to be happy at some point.
With this Coronavirus issue where home quarantine is essential, it is a challenging moment for people with autism. Some of them are living on their own, and some are barely seeing anybody. Most of their conversations with other people are through social media and video conferencing platforms. Some spend time chatting, texting, and telephone calls as well. Sometimes, these people do not go out of their homes even if they want to. With the likes of that routine, many people can quickly conclude that it is how autistic people deal with the pandemic situation. But the truth to that is most of these individuals also need company.
The majority of people with autism, though they like to be alone, need some companionship. At some level, being with someone allows them to function well. They can either be in the form of a romantic relationship, friendship, or family. Honestly, as much as they appreciate being away from absolute pressure during this crisis, autistic individuals still need someone in their lives. Yes, they need alone time to be able to prepare themselves in dealing with the unpredictable world outside. However, it does not mean they heed isolation.
Also, people with autism need regular therapy and so it’s a good thing that online therapy apps such as BetterHelp are now available in the time of the pandemic. People with autism don’t need to leave the comfort of their homes to have access to regular therapy. A lot of people have tried and got satisfied with how it turned out.
People should recognize that some individuals cannot handle the stress, anxiety, and loneliness caused by this pandemic. That even if some tell others that they are used to the situation, no one should think that isolation is entirely okay. In times like this, people should spare moments to speak, communicate, and be there for these autistic individuals.