Should you disclose your autism diagnosis at work?

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Image credit: OZY

One central question those of us with jobs face is: Do I disclose my autism diagnosis to my boss and coworkers?

Some research suggests that disclosing autism is helpful in forming social bonds. For example, a study last year revealed that neurotypical students form more positive impressions of characters in stories who engage in unusual behavior, such as insisting on the location of a couch, when these characters are described as autistic.

In my experience, however, disclosure has been a double-edged sword.

Disclosing an autism diagnosis at work can hinder advancement. People’s low expectations of me were noticeable. I felt stuck. After asking for a promotion after some major achievements, I was denied. Then, after further achievements, I was given a title change but no pay raise, despite the existence of pay bands. I made $5,000 less than the low end of the pay band for my new job title.

Related article:  Viewpoint: Biologist Jerry Coyne challenges view that sex is 'a spectrum⁠, not a binary'⁠—such claims 'undermine public trust in science'

It was disheartening to be outwardly liked and praised but to never receive a real promotion.

I have no idea where I might be working in 5 years, let alone 10. We need more research on long-term outcomes for autistic employees. As an autistic person, uncertainty is objectively terrifying to me, but I think it would be at least moderately terrifying for anyone to not have a vision for their future.

Read full, original post: Disclosure of autism at work holds risks and benefits

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