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What is de-sensitisation and why is it important?

Posted by: alisrowe, May 18, 2020

Everyone experiences phases in their life. A phase could be the period of your life when you are at school or the period of your life you are working in a particular job. Relationships have phases as well. There are phases where you might see or interact with a particular person regularly and phases where you lose touch.

Change can be very, very difficult for autistic people. Therefore, transitions between phases can be problematic and it can take an autistic person a long time to ‘settle’ into a new phase. It can also be very difficult to transition back into a previous phase, which is what this article is about.

This article was inspired by the partial lockdown we are currently in in the UK. I started thinking about how we’ve all had to adjust to this new life of quarantine and how it might be returning to normal. We will effectively have to return to a previous ‘phase’.

If you have read my book, ‘What I have Learned about Life’, you might remember that I wrote “I would probably never be able to go back to university again and that I would probably never be able to go back to a ‘normal’ type of job again”. Even though I managed those experiences before, I have not done them for a long time. What I believe has happened is that, whereas I was [somewhat] de-sensitised to those experiences before, I am not now.

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