Online autistic identity

I like facebook - I spend a lot of time on it. My profile is almost exclusively 'NT compliant but still eccentric old me'

Does anyone think that a 'dual identity' is healthy?

I feel like I want to 'live my truth' and just be completely open, but I think some/many existing friends would be confused and quite unnerved.

Above all I just want to share some things I know - to entertain, educate, resonate (or be happily disagreed with) - and feel that some of my things are VERY not NT.

  • Join a charity, JJ. Go and meet.interact with real people in real time.

  • It's an amplifier for all types of societal narcissism, fuelled by corporate greed. Everyone is living on Facebook, editing their lives and sharing their 'best moments' to garner likes, or their 'worst moments' to garner sympathy. 

  • Yeah, definitely. I don't like that I cannot access some groups without a Facebook account. And also that without a profile filled in you're deemed 'untrustworthy' and might not be approved in a group. Sigh!

  • I use Instagram for my special interest - knitting and crochet mainly. Not advertised as me being autistic but I do have conversations on there with others about autism.

    Twitter account 1 - work-related stuff

    Twitter account 2 - openly autistic General chit chat

    Facebook - family/friends, not openly autistic

    I started the 2nd Twitter for autism and general chit chat recently as I was originally being openly autistic on my primary account but I was blurring lines really between my work identity and my personal needs as a newly diagnosed autistic woman.

    I dont feel I want to make a big announcement that I'm autistic to friends and family so I've not bothered with Facebook. I know it would only result in questions I dont want to answer. 

  • Yea and it's purposely made to be addictive. 

    I see the evidence even in support workers when they're sat right in front of me, they can't handle being away from their phone and on facebook for longer than a few minutes. I once challenged a support worker to not look at her phone for the whole duration of my support and they kept reaching over for an invisible phone (because I'd hid it from them as part of the challenge LOL) It was like it was just an automatic thing for them to do now, 'oh it's been 10 minutes....must reach for phone' 

  • I feel that there is a lot of 'forethought without evidence' about groups on facebook.

    I had enough with one group and gently advised a new member not to post her own research or ideas (about dog food, of all things!) because she would be set upon by the rabble. (IE the echo chamber effect with a Little Hitler in charge).... I was banned from there, despite it being a very good source of information and also that I know an awful lot of verifiable science about feeding dogs - a lot more than the people on there.

    I am interested in the function of social media in the (horrifically) widening polarization of global attitudes (in some people) and its unifying function of finding confluence across disparate communities (which was what 'the net' was originally heralded to be). I'm not entirely sure that anyone can define what progress actually looks like until after it has happened...

  • The scenarios you describe really echo my thinking.

    I tried separate accounts - all in my own name but with differing target audiences: I am sure that has not been a success.

    When I worked, there was a giant wall between personal and professional online personas (thank you LinkedIn and also fake Facebook names)

    And now, with a diagnosis behind me... all i really want to do is live MY truth - whatever on earth that looks like -  and not hurt anyone in the process... :(   


  • Yes, finding our truth seems to be a tricky balance. Do we put ourselves out there and open ourselves up or do we remain guarded. I find this is my general dilemma at the moment, not just online. 

  • After going through phases of deactivating and reactivating my FB account, I finally deleted it. People get so uncomfortable with so many things (bluntness, 'oversharing', certain jokes etc). I found FB to be quite restricting, because I felt pressured to pretend to be somebody I'm not on there, and hype up my happiness and successes. 

    Another thing that annoyed me about it is that most people I know pretend to be someone they're not on there! Like they have their 'online persona', which is nothing like their real selves. I had a conversation about this with one of my NT friends, who just shrugged and said "that's just the way it is". Total waste of energy. I'd rather just chat to my friends one on one on WhatsApp and IRL.

  • A lot depends on *your* experience of what autistic really means to you.   Do you feel you would fit well with (I hate this phrase) 'lower functioning' autistic people or do you feel you're more HFA.

    If you feel HFA is more your thing, then you'll find most museums are stuffed with them - all into their special interest and loving talking to others about it..

    Where do you feel you would fit?