CFNN Reporter Ava Nelson
The internet has a fascination with autism and how different it presents in women. Gen z has taken to tiktok to inform and learn about this neurodivergence. This generation has finally started to try to break down the social stigma around mental illness and neurodivergent disorders. They have used the platforms they have to teach others and help people find a diagnosis that feels like something that finally fits.
Autism was originally studied by Leo Kanner in 1943. The original study only focused on men, so the research wasn’t applied to women.
This lack of research has led to women being underdiagnosed or misdiagnosed for years. Oftentimes, these misdiagnoses include ADHD, ADD, depression, anxiety, and many other disorders. Now that many women have begun to do their own research and learn from the internet about their probability of having autism, more women are going to their doctors with their suspicions.
19 year old Paige Layle has made waves on Tiktok talking about her Autism diagnoses. She talks about blind disabilities, Autism in women, as well as late diagnoses in women. She was diagnosed at the age 15 and has dedicated her tiktok to informing and educating others about what her diagnosis really means. She also has videos discussing language surrounding Autism, such as high and low functions as well as a person‘s first language.
Being able to get the right diagnosis is important. It helps to learn how to cope with the symptoms as well as what medications would work best. Having people on such a popular platform educating others is helping so many people. This education and breaking the stigma will help many people get their diagnoses as well as respecting and supporting others.