How does someone with autism feel about their symptoms?

what does autism feel like


Special Strong Find a Location Near Me

Discover the world of autism and gain insights into how someone with autism feels their symptoms. Explore firsthand accounts that delve into sensory sensitivities, emotional landscapes, and unique perspectives, shedding light on the diverse aspects of autism. Navigate the complexities of autism through personal narratives, offering a glimpse into the feelings and challenges faced by individuals on the spectrum. Join us on a journey of empathy and awareness as we explore the question: ‘How does someone with autism feel their symptoms?

If you have autism, it can be difficult to help those who are “neurotypical” (NT) understand what you’re going through. On the one hand, you shouldn’t have to explain yourself; society should accept you exactly as you are, without you having to change your behavior. However, society is run by NT people, so it can be a true advantage to be understood: People will alter their expectations in job interviews, in classrooms, and in health-related environments when they understand the different ways you experience the world. To get people on your side, here’s Special Strong‘s answer to “What does autism feel like?”


Autism Feels Different to Different People

Autism is more recently referred to as ASD or autism spectrum disorder — the operative word here being “spectrum.” This shift in language stresses the diversity for those who are differently abled in this way. There are those who have autism who can live independently (like you can), but then there are those whose autism can require assistance in most, if not all, areas of their lives. An important way to talk about autism, should you be asked about it, is to focus on how you experience it as an individual. Remind people that you do not speak for all those with autism.


Autism Feels … More

The way you feel or experience your surroundings, when you have autism, is far more intense than the way an NT person feels or experiences things. You feel more. Deeper. You’re more sensitive to sounds, textures, visuals. An ambulance going off down the street could be background noise to an NT friend, but it can completely rob you of your focus and sense of calm. You may be drawn to certain lighting displays that your NT peers may completely overlook. A scratchy tag on your shirt could be enough to ruin your day, but for your NT coworkers, it’s a minor inconvenience.


Sometimes it’s enough to explain that you have bigger feelings or sensory receptors than other people. Without this knowledge, the NT people in your life may not understand your behavior or reactions to these seemingly insignificant experiences.


Autism Feels Anxious

When sensory overload meets an inability to communicate frustrations, anxiety ensues. Who wouldn’t feel anxious, afraid, and frustrated in these circumstances: Something is wrong, but because you’re experiencing so many intense senses at once, it can be difficult to point out the problem. Being unable to identify the heart of the issue can delay the solution — or make a solution even seem impossible.


Again, being able to communicate this experience to an NT friend before (or after) an anxiety spiral can help them understand your behavior, which makes them more likely to advocate for you.


Autism Feels Focused

Nothing keeps you focused and centered like your autism. Others may see your special interests as fixations or obsessions, but in truth, you just have the ability to hyper-focus on the things that are important to you. NT friends don’t have the ability to stay on track with their passions and inherently stay true to themselves.


If you can combine your passions with a societal service, then you can become a major asset in your career field. For example, if you love video games, then you might consider becoming a video game developer or storyboarder. If you love problem solving, then you can bring a lot of value to a company by working in logistics.


Autism Feels Isolating

Sometimes it’s hard to have autism because other people don’t really understand where you’re coming from. It can be tough to describe how you’re feeling or explain why you think the way you do, which can make NT people dismissive. You just want to be yourself and be accepted for who you are. You want what everyone wants, really.


Explaining what autism feels like can be the first step in connecting with the NT people in your life. If people are asking you about your experience, that’s usually a good sign that they’ll be receptive to what you have to say. It’s OK to be your own advocate. When you speak up for yourself, you empower your NT friends, family members, and coworkers to become your advocates too.


It can be tiring to be someone’s main point of contact for all things autism, however, so you can refer people to different resources. That way, they can do their own research.


Autism Resources


  • Special Strong Blog
  • The Mighty
  • Autism Speaks
  • National Autistic Society
  • Spectrum News
  • Autism Society
  • National Autism Center
  • Society of America for Autism
  • Self Advocacy Network for Autism
  • Autism Rights Movement
  • Autism Research Institute
  • Organization of Autism Research
  • Autism Science Foundation
  • Autism Europe


Explaining Sensory Differences

It is essential to convey and articulate this heightened sensory and emotional reality faced by individuals with autism to those around them. The comprehension and expression of these ‘bigger feelings’ can be pivotal in fostering understanding and support. Without this knowledge, NT peers often misinterpret the reactions of individuals with autism to these seemingly insignificant experiences as overreactions or even tantrums. Greasing the wheels of communication about these sensory differences may reveal the challenges faced by those with autism and open doors for empathy and better mutual understanding.

Increasing awareness about people with autism having highly tuned sensory receptors is essential. This knowledge can lead others to be more accommodating by controlling environmental elements. It can help avoid causing unnecessary discomfort. For example, understanding that loud noises are disruptive can be beneficial. People may then strive to maintain a quieter ambiance or warn about sudden loud sounds in advance.. Such small gestures of understanding and acceptance can make a significant difference to those living with autism.

In conclusion, there needs to be greater respect for the complex sensory experiences of individuals with autism. These experiences should not be invalidated or dismissed. Instead, they should be recognized as valid and essential aspects of their lifestyle. They shape the way in which they interact with the world around them. Better understanding of these sensory differences and impacts is crucial. It will tremendously help in creating more inclusive environments for those with autism.

Special Strong Gym Franchise Learn More


We Understand What Autism Feels Like

Embracing a profound understanding of the intricate world of autism, our dedicated personal trainers at Special Strong possess unique training that allows them to empathetically grasp the challenges posed by autism symptoms. We recognize that these symptoms can present significant hurdles in the pursuit of weight loss and overall fitness. Our trainers are not just fitness experts; they are individuals with a deep understanding of sensory triggers, ensuring a tailored and supportive approach to your wellness journey.

By choosing Special Strong, you embark on a fitness experience that goes beyond conventional training. Our personalized approach addresses the specific needs and sensitivities associated with autism, creating a safe and inclusive environment for your fitness endeavors. Whether you opt for private training sessions or dynamic boot camp classes, our trainers are committed to guiding you towards becoming the healthiest version of yourself.

Additionally, convenience is key, which is why we have expanded our presence across North Texas. Furthermore, we are continuously reaching into new states. Therefore, locating a Special Strong facility near you has never been easier. By doing so, you can access our specialized training services. Moreover, taking the first step towards a healthier and more empowered you is just a sign-up away. So, why wait? Enroll in our transformative fitness programs today. As a result, your journey to wellness will begin with trainers who truly understand what autism feels like.



Special Strong provides adaptive fitness for children, adolescents, and adults with mental, physical and cognitive challenges. Start your own Special Strong gym franchise today and create a lasting impact on your community.