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Time Blindness and Autism

People with Autism and Asperger's syndrome may experience a variety of different executive functioning issues. These include issues with; organisation skills, self regulation, the ability to process tasks sequentially and remembering instructions, multi-tasking, filtering distractions, setting priorities, planning and attention focusing. 

In this post, I want to focus on "time-blindness" and look at some of the causes and the ways in which this obstacle can be reduced.

What is Time-Blindness? Time blindness is when an individual becomes somewhat unaware of the passage of time. Like most executive functions, the ability to measure and manage time is part innate and part learned. It needs to be practiced and honed in order to keep it sharp and functional but it comes more naturally to some people than to others. People on the autism spectrum and people with related issues, such as OCD and ADHD can have particular difficulty in this area.

Time-blindness can impact people in …
Recent posts

Rounding up 2019

We've reached the end of yet another year and before I jump into 2020, I wanted to take a look back at my posts and activities for 2019. 

Life Changes I started blogging back in October 2007, over 12 years ago now. My two boys were aged 4 and 7 and I was still young, still struggling to be a father and husband and I had only just started to come to terms with my own position on the spectrum. In 2019 I turned 50, so there's no denying that I'm old. My boys are now 16 and 19, with my eldest finished school, working and studying. Those old restrictions that his teachers tried to impose "your son will never......", seem so far away now.  We've given him a lot of good support but he's done most of the heavy lifting by himself and I couldn't be more proud of him.

The problems facing us now are so different from those we faced when the kids were younger. My kids now have to enter the world of dating while I have to deal with the issues of ageing parents and …

Being a Good Dad to Kids on the Spectrum

One of the frustrating things about the fathers, particularly fathers of kids on the spectrum is that for various reasons, they're not always "engaged" in the family. Fathers are often used as the "bad cop" in parenting but many fathers go completely in the other direction, permitting anything and ultimately disengaging from their child's development. 

In this post, I want to look at the reasons why fathers don't engage, how you, the dad, can parent on your own terms and how to become an important part of your child's life. 

Why aren't fathers engaged? Fatherhood today is very different to what it was like in the previous generation. As GenX, our parents were likely baby boomers or traditionalists. Fathers in our day didn't spend a lot of time on things like child-rearing. They were always too busy with work and chores. More importantly, fathers in previous generations were encouraged to bury their feelings and to toughen up. This has led to …

Strategies for when your Autistic Teenager needs help with Math

There's no doubt about it, mathematics is a very important skill. It's a skill that you will use throughout  your entire life whether it's for checking your expenditure and change, doing quotations for work or simply measuring up the garden in order to buy supplies for home. Math is critical. 

The media would have us believe that mathematics is an automatic "savant skill" for people with autism and that kids with autism, even non-verbal ones, are all capable of amazing feats of mathematics. If only this were true.  Unfortunately, this is yet another area where autistic people are just the same as everyone else. Some people are very good at math but most are not. 


Sometimes it's all about practice Math teachers often suggest that the best way to learn mathematics is to keep doing math problems over and over. There's certainly some truth in this approach.

If you already understand the theory then doing a lot of problems will usually do wonders to improve you…

Our Partners and Autism Acceptance

Last week, I read a post from a lady who didn't feel accepted by her partner. The interesting thing was that while she knew what she wanted to say, she felt that she couldn't talk to him about her autism. 

She was considering the next steps in her relationship but was going into it without the tools to communicate effectively. 

Until quite recently, people with autism tended to fall into two broad categories; 

Those who were diagnosed with autism because they exhibited behaviours to such an extent that they were unable to get into long term relationships, andThose who went undiagnosed into a relationship. 
These days however, it's much more common for people entering a relationship to know that they're on the autism spectrum.

In this post, I want to look at the benefits of disclosing autism to prospective partners.


Why is it becoming more common? A couple of decades ago, it was relatively uncommon for people to get married with the knowledge that they were on the autism s…

Being an older adult with Asperger's Syndrome

A couple of weeks ago, I officially hit the big 50. I guess that makes me an "older adult" now. Nothing much has changed but I thought it would be worthwhile looking back over 15 years of diagnosis and talking about what it's like as an older adult on the spectrum. 

The Words I still tend to use the word Asperger's to describe myself. It's not because autism is necessarily a bad word, it's more that this was what I was diagnosed with. Obviously I haven't gone back to the doctor to seek a wording update. There's really no point as I already know what it would be.

When I'm writing, I'm increasingly trying to use "autism" but that's mainly to help me connect with my audience. If I talk to an older person, I use Asperger's and if I talk to a younger person, I use autism.

In terms of "whichever first" language (person with autism vs autistic person) is mostly irrelevant to me. I'm actually a "Person with Gavin&q…

Some thoughts on Cups, the extreme male brain theories of autism and genderless society

Recently, I was unpacking the dishwasher and putting cups away while thinking about how we chose the cups and mugs and how my wife and I have very different thought processes when it comes to buying them.

I was wondering if this was a male/female difference, an autism/neurotypical difference or just a Gavin/Joanne difference. Somehow, I got to reflecting on the whole "extreme male brain" theory of autism and why I dislike that model more than ever.  ... and then of course, I started thinking about how people escape these gender stereotypes.
The art of choosing a mug My wife used to choose cups in sets of four or preferably six. They'd all have the same pattern (or at least they'd all be related in some way).  Often this pattern would match the walls or benchtop in our kitchen.

Sometimes the mugs she'd choose would come with their own stand which meant that they annoyingly took up space on the bench or they'd have a set of special hooks on the wall which neede…