Advice on Disclosure

Usually I would discuss these types of issues with my mentor or therapist, but unfortunate timing means I face the difficult task of my first ever informal disclosure without either of their assistance, so I was hoping some people here would give me some advice and feedback.

I am a final year university student and for the next semester I have to work full time in the lab. I begin on Monday. I have never disclosed my diagnosis before. Last summer I worked in a different lab and it was hell. I was treated like a child and it drove me to the point of being suicidal. I don't want this semester to go the same way, as I have lost my support network and if I end up in the same place as in the summer, I will not survive. I feel like disclosing is the only hope I have of making the work environment more tolerable and at least giving me something to report if I am mistreated by those who supervise me. 

I have been trying to plan out what to say. I plan to disclose to whoever is first training me, just before they begin to teach me. Here's what I've come up with:

  • Interrupt them with "Just before we start..."
  • Explain that I have Asperger's and my verbal processing skills are poor. This means that informal verbal teaching is the most difficult for me (this is how I will be taught lab skills) and I will therefore do a lot of writing/sketching as they are teaching me to try and internalise the information.
  • Explain that I might be quiet, because verbal communication requires a large amount of concentration, and so I find it hard to multitask talking and working/learning.
  • Explain that if I become overwhelmed I may take short 5 - 10 minute breaks to listen to music and calm down.
  • Ask who I should address questions to and if there are any scenarios in which I should not disturb them. 

My main concerns are 1) chickening out or forgetting, hence having to act neurotypical for the duration of my placement, or 2) starting talking about it and tearing up, because I'm in a bad place mentally and talking about things like this can make me irrationally emotional. 

Can any one give me any advice or share any of their own experiences?