Acceptance Matters

Acceptance Matters is a virtual conference hosted by the North East Autism Society. Featuring a panel of autistic speakers, the conference will cover the topics of autistic wellbeing, autism and employment, communication as autistic parents, and understanding autistic experience.

The event takes place on Thursday, 16th May from 9.30am. Places are limited, so please sign up to secure your place by clicking the button below or choosing "Book tickets" from the navigation menu above.

Choose "Conference details" from the navigation menu to see the schedule and the speakers.

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"I felt like I deserved it because I was Autistic”: Understanding the Impact of Interpersonal Victimisation on the Lives of Autistic People

Presenter: Dr Amy Pearson

In this talk, Amy will examine the impact of interpersonal victimisation on autistic adults from their own perspective, and explore what helps or hinders their recovery within the context of social stigma, citing the results of a previous academic study.

A total of 102 autistic adults completed either an online survey, or a spoken interview about their experiences of interpersonal victimisation, and four overarching themes were identified:

  1. The usual for autism (expectations of victimisation, and experiences of othering).
  2. Personhood revoked: The cost of living (being part of a neurominority, trauma, masking, and burnout),
  3. Unpacking the baggage (impact of hermeneutical injustice).
  4. 'If you want to make an apple pie from scratch, you have to invent the universe first’ (structural inequality and power dynamics, support, and community).

Findings highlighted the importance of considering the relationship between stigma and victimisation, and the relationship between trauma, masking, and burnout in autistic people. Reducing barriers to support and recovery are contingent on reducing structural inequality and providing better training about autistic people to frontline professionals.

About the presenter

Amy is a Senior Lecturer in Psychology at the University of Sunderland, and an autistic autism researcher. Her work focuses on understanding the impact of interpersonal victimisation among autistic people, and the relationship between autistic identity and masking, stigma.

Last year, Amy co-wrote a paper on masking with The Autistic Advocate, and founding member of NEAS's Autism and Neurodiversity Think Tank, Kieran Rose, which you can read here.

Follow Amy on Twitter