[94] S8 E2: The sensory and social challenges of fitting into a new culture as an autistic adult
Topics in this episode: autism at work, autistic children, employment, family, masking, sensory issues, stimming, writing

Karawynn Long is an American writer and proofreader living in Mexico.

Now 52, she had what she describes as her ‘Autism epiphany’ just over three years ago, a few months before her fiftieth birthday. She is self identified as autistic, partly due to formal assessments not being available in the Mexican system, and difficult and expensive to obtain in the American one.

Karawynn moved to Mexico almost 10 years ago for economic reasons, and unlike many autistic people who find living in other cultures freeing and less fraught with social expectations, she has found many aspects of life there a challenge as an autistic person.

She writes short fiction, including writing a nonspeaking autistic character in a short story that will be published this year in a leading fiction magazine, and is currently working on a novel

I had such a lovely time chatting with Karawynn Long (so much so that this episode is a tiny bit longer than usual, as I lost track of time!). I’m delighted to share our conversation with you.

We talk about:

➡ Her experience of living in Mexico

➡ Her evolving relationship with her stepdaughter, who is also late identified autistic

➡ Undoing internalised ableism, and her relationship with stimming since it was suppressed in her as a child

Squarepeg is a podcast in which neurodivergent women, and trans and nonbinary people, explore navigating a neurotypical world and share their insights, challenges and successes.

I hope that these conversations will be inspiring and thought provoking, open you up to new ways of thinking about being neurodivergent, and help you feel more connected to a worldwide community of people with similar experiences.

I’m Amy Richards, and after being diagnosed autistic at the age of 37 I’m now on a mission to learn more about different perspectives and issues around being a neurodivergent adult in a world that feels like it doesn’t quite fit.



Karawynn’s website: https://karawynnlong.com/

Mastodon: https://mastodon.social/@karawynn@wandering.shop

Medium: https://medium.com/re-cognition

Substack: https://karawynn.substack.com/

Diary of a Young Naturalist: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Diary-Young-Naturalist-Dara-McAnulty/dp/1908213795

The Reason I Jump: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Reason-Jump-voice-silence-autism/dp/1444776770

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