A – Z of Autism: A is for Anger

Alright, Alright,  I’m entirely late with this post. Let’s pretend I’m starting on Autism “Awareness” Day, how about?

(I’ll probably actually do B later today)

It’s funny, though, because the reason I put off writing on anger was because I was busy being very non-angry. I got a tattoo of a rainbow giraffe snuggling a blue cat. Because autism. (If you’re wondering why giraffes are autism, go here). After that I was busy writing for Camp NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month). These are both things that makes me happy and keep me calm and all sorts of good stuff.

Why do I mention this? Because it is very integral to my discussion of anger.

People- mostly annoying, oppressive people- tend to assume that we angry autistics spend all of our days angering while we autism, autisming while we anger. The assumption is that because we are angry, we are nothing else. We must be angry all the time, living sad lives of hate. No time for the happy pursuits of a normal life.

Except, well, it’s the exact opposite. We are angry, yes. We’re angry about people trying to cure us, we’re angry about people wanting to kill us, we’re angry about a ton of oppressions, big and small.

Because we’re angry, we give ourselves the chance to be happy.

For you non-autistics out there: imagine that you were constantly being told that you were a broken person, if a person at all. That you were a tragedy and a burden to those around you. How would you feel? How would you feel if you couldn’t say “angry”?

You’d certainly be hurting. But if you couldn’t be angry, you’d probably be bottling up the pain, no release valve. Maybe you’d take out the pain on yourself.

Whereas if you could be angry, you could have that release valve. And maybe, you could make it so there were fewer things to be angry about.

Being ignorant about the hate we face, or passively accepting that hate, allows the hate to grow. Anger kills that hate. It forces those who hate to recognize that they’re doing evil- which may just change their ways- and shows the passersby that the people they’re following are hateful, not innocent, not to be trusted.

So because we are angry, because we can combat the hate we face, we can be happy.

We can sleep easy knowing that we’re not complicit in our own oppression. We can laugh with each other knowing that when we’re not laughing, we’re destroying what seeks to destroy us.

We can get tattoos of giraffes snuggling cats because even though being in the autistic community means fighting with those who hate us, it also means love and companionship.

So lemme end this post on a happy note, a giraffey note. Because while I’m happy now, anger got me here.

Image is of a tattoo on the chest of a light-skinned person. The tattoo is of a yellow giraffe with descending rainbow spots cuddling and licking a blue cat. There are light blue sparkle diamonds around the tattoo.

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