Note For Anyone Writing About Me

Guide to Writing About Me

I am an Autistic person,not a person with autism. I am also not Aspergers. The diagnosis isn't even in the DSM anymore, and yes, I agree with the consolidation of all autistic spectrum stuff under one umbrella. I have other issues with the DSM.

I don't like Autism Speaks. I'm Disabled, not differently abled, and I am an Autistic activist. Self-advocate is true, but incomplete.

Citing My Posts

MLA: Zisk, Alyssa Hillary. "Post Title." Yes, That Too. Day Month Year of post. Web. Day Month Year of retrieval.

APA: Zisk, A. H. (Year Month Day of post.) Post Title. [Web log post]. Retrieved from

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Autistic and Pregnant

Trigger Warning: Ableism, talk of forced abortions and loss of autonomy

I saw this: 
I’ve never seen a shirt saying Autistic & Pregnant or something along those lines.  Probably because it wouldn’t be safe to wear.

It hurts. It hurts that it's not safe to wear a shirt like that. It hurts remembering the signs at pro-choice rallies, saying that "an autistic woman shouldn't be forced to give birth" as if autism has anything to do with the fact that no one should be forced to be pregnant and ignoring the fact that an autistic woman shouldn't be forced to abort, either. 
It hurts to know that people legitimately think that Autistic people either can't or shouldn't have kids. Can't would be the assumption that Autistic people wouldn't be able to have a relationship or have sex or get pregnant, which isn't how it works. We can. We do. Why do you think we still exist? People like us can grow up and have kids. It's not just Broad Autism Phenotypers who have Autistic kids. It's Autistic adults who have Autistic kids too. 
The idea that disabled people can and do have kids, some of whom will also be disabled and some of whom will not is one that people have a lot of trouble with, but it's a fact of life. I want kids. Not now, I'm still in school, but I do want them. And I want to live in a world where I'm not at risk of having my kids taken away from me because I think that the cost of compliance-based therapy and treatment is too high, because I think that there is a huge difference between eliminating autistic behaviors and supporting an Autistic person, because I think that Autistic people are people who have our own wants and needs and goals and can make our own decisions about what is and is not in our best interests. I want to live in a world where a shirt saying Autistic & Pregnant would be safe to wear, where no one would attempt to force an abortion on anyone wearing it, where no one would think the "risk" of the child being Autistic too scary to accept, where being Autistic & Pregnant & Totally Cool With This is acceptable.
That's where I want to be, and that's the world I am trying to work towards. Maybe I'll make the shirt myself when the time comes. 


  1. Well said. (From a totally cool autistic mom of two totally cool autistic kids.)

  2. When you find out you are expecting, let me make you the shirt. :) Flaps to this post.

    1. im autistic and pregnant and would wear that shirt because I don't give a crap what others say I can not wait for my son to be here in july

    2. Also autistic and pregnant and proud of both! >D

    3. I am Autistic and pregnant. 6 weeks pregnant to be exact. My fiance is also Autistic. I would be terrified to wear that shirt just because of the negative attention I would receive. I'm also afraid my child will get taken away from me because of my most people see Autism as a disability and most people think that people with a disability can't be a parent which is absolutely ludicrous. I am feeling the sickness so much more, my emotions are heightened my body is going through all these changes and I'm not sure how to handle it.

  3. Oh my gosh. Yes, I can TOTALLY see why such a shirt would not be safe to wear! At the very least, I'd expect verbal abuse from one or two random people.

    I do think it would be awesome if you, or any other autistic mom-to-be, *did* make and wear that shirt, and maybe it'd help people get used to the idea that we're here, we grow up and some of us have kids.

    (Although, in my mind, the backlash against it would come not so much from the people who don't think we can have sex or start families, so much as from the people who think autism is THE WORST THING EVER and how dare we make more autistic people. I'd expect A LOT of that, frankly.)

    1. Yeah, I kind of agree on who is going to be backlashing. I'm glad I have good friends who are aware that I am both Autistic and fine, but... is scary.
      As long as it's not something that will put my in *physical danger* I probably will make that shirt when I am expecting.

  4. I'm unlikely to be pregnant again, but if I were, I'd love to wear such a thing. 5 kids later, and I'm still autistic... imagine that!

  5. I no this is an old post but have any of you autistic mummies suffered with overstimulation? Im almost coming to the end of my first trimester and its the only thing i struggle with. X

    1. I'm pregnant now and get very overstimulated. I had to leave a job is managed to hold for two years because I lost the ability to cope. I'm nannying from home now but I have a very supportive significant other :) I'm not sure if pregnancy had made me more sensitive or not since I'm so easily overstimulated already that it's difficult to say (I have to carry the big earmuffs with me in my bag when I go out and use them a lot even at home and have been reduced to clothes that are solely soft fabrics right now: t-shirts and maxi skirts at the moment)


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