CandyFrog

408d

How do you go about finding yourself again after masking basically your whole life? I was diagnosed with Autism and ADHD late in life and I've been "masking" since I was around 9 or 10, and I'm in my 20s now and all I do is mirror others when it comes to fashion and personality, and because I've done that almost my whole life, I'm not sure who I am anymore or how to be "myself" because I'm not sure who "myself" is. It really hurts not knowing, there's no resources online about it, and I just really need some advice or suggestions on it. I feel so alone, no counselor has been able to help, and I'm not sure where else to turn.

advertisement

Top reply
    • Puma

      408d

      I am in this exact stage as you! I just recently got diagnosed with ASD in January of this year at 22 years old and am trying to figure out and unravel my mask vs my true self. It is a very confusing process and I am also unsure how exactly to go about doing this. I am currently listening to/reading the book “Unmasking Autism” by Dr Devon Price. It came out very recent, and the author themself is autistic. It goes into a lot of information about masking, how and why it develops, the impacts of it, etc. and it has been very informative and helpful for me to think about things in a new light and help identify traits of my mask vs me. I am not finished with it yet but so far it is very good and extremely helpful, so I would highly recommend it. It comes in audiobook format too if that works better for you, with PDF worksheets included for some journaling-esc exercises and prompts. Hope this helps!

    • Zuma

      408d

      I don’t really hide my autism from people. I am open to talk. Well, most times. However, when it comes to me wanting a relationship, I try my best not to share that I have autism until people really get to know me, just in case people tend to judge.

    • River_KpopLuv

      408d

      I get that 100% it sucks so much not knowing who you actually are or who you want to be im still kind of struggling with this as well but i have a good group of friends that support me and help me through figuring it out (they are all neurodivergent in one way or another as well)

    • BaileyFawn

      408d

      My friend, i do that with everyone... i sometimes mirror other's personality, actions or emotions... i have spent a long time pretending to be someone else's voice/actions... i never really found myself doing things i actually enjoyed, that weren't inspired by others... and every time i ask the LORD. Yahova, what i am He always tells me the same thing... farm hand... reaper... a light in the dark... i don't know what any of these mean... but I'm entrusting, God, to lead me where i need to go

    • Puma

      408d

      I am in this exact stage as you! I just recently got diagnosed with ASD in January of this year at 22 years old and am trying to figure out and unravel my mask vs my true self. It is a very confusing process and I am also unsure how exactly to go about doing this. I am currently listening to/reading the book “Unmasking Autism” by Dr Devon Price. It came out very recent, and the author themself is autistic. It goes into a lot of information about masking, how and why it develops, the impacts of it, etc. and it has been very informative and helpful for me to think about things in a new light and help identify traits of my mask vs me. I am not finished with it yet but so far it is very good and extremely helpful, so I would highly recommend it. It comes in audiobook format too if that works better for you, with PDF worksheets included for some journaling-esc exercises and prompts. Hope this helps!

    • AnimalBoy

      408d

      Lean into what is most comfortable, things you like are important but you probably know those things, things that makes you feel comfortable are also important and can lead to you discovering what makes you uncomfortable and what boundaries you need to put in place. Part of this can also stem from a lack in introspection, which is also a symptom of ADHD and Autism, so you often can't see who you are because you have difficulty processing and knowing how you feel. It often helps to get an outside perspective from yor close friends and trusted loved ones who might be able to read your body language and reactions better than you can read your emotions so you can get an idea of what reactions to look out for in certain situations.

    • KitKat1450

      408d

      This is so hard. I’ve been working on unmasking recently. Since I am so used to masking, I find people that have similar personalities but externalization it’s- whether in real life or social media. It kind of allows me to see that it is safe. What has also helped is inner child work and trying to get connected to my child self before all of this masking started and what I enjoyed, what my personality was, what I gravitated towards. For me I don’t enjoy thing most others do, it’s more out of obligation and because I want connection so I’ve started offering up other activities to see if they’re more enjoyable to do with others. Unmasking isnt comfortable so I’ve been spending time around people that do it as well and talking to them about it and practicing with them to gain confidence. Small steps for me works. I do feel like I’m becoming more in line with my true self lately but if I were to push too hard I’d probably revert back into my shell. So just figure out what works for you, create a safety net, and try things (in a safe way). Disclaimer- I’ve done a lot of damage by listening to my friends that have different core values on a few things and encouraged me to do things that ended up being traumatic for me so really take the time to get centered before trying things and make sure it is in line with what’s best for you without others opinions clouding your judgement. Since that was vague- I recommend do NOT try something just to see if your over past trauma if that behavior is not in line with your beliefs. I learned the hard way and it was damaging and took a lot of work to recover from.

☝ This content is generated by our users and it is not a substitute for professional medical advice. Please consult with your physician before making any medical decision

Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.

Find people who are
experiencing a similar
medical reality

100% Free
100%
Free

Download Alike for the full experience

JOIN

View All

Bupropion

night sweats

paranoid

Valium

sertraline

palpitations

Anxiety (Including GAD)

Depression

palpitations

Depression

Valium

Bupropion