Since sharing my diagnosis in a TEDx Talk, I’ve presented all over the world from NZ to NY. And you know what I’ve learned?
Everything we’ve been told about autism is wrong.
This is how I went from burned-out neurotypical to empowered autistic, changing the way the world sees autism!
Acknowledging the ancestors and advocates who have come before us, who walk alongside us, and who make this world possible.
Nope. And when I was first diagnosed? I hated the word. Autism. It was like being branded with everything I hated about myself: weird, different, broken.
Before the TEDx Talk.
Before the books.
Before the a-ha.
I was angry. Sad. Actually? I was pretty gutted by my diagnosis. How could I be autistic? I could talk and work. I was married, I had a degree. Wasn’t I just weird? Weak? Over-sensitive? Autism is a disorder. And I’m fine. I just need to try harder, I just need to fit in.
And then I learned more, I read more, I shared my diagnosis and I realised: There is a reason I always felt different. It’s because I am different.
Autism. Not a deficit. Not a diagnosis. A way of being.
You are exactly who and how you are supposed to be. It’s the world that will change.
Jolene Stockman is an ultra-enthusiastic, multi-award winning author and TEDx speaker from Aotearoa, New Zealand. As tangata whaitakiwātanga (an autistic person), Jolene is excited to educate and inspire corporates, communities, global giants, and not-for-profits with powerful books, presentations, and resources.
Jolene likes fizzy drinks, tiny toys, shiny things, and spicy wedges with everything (cheese, bacon, sour cream, sweet chilli sauce, and parsley because, you know, greens.)
Keep in touch
(not literally 😉)
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