UNMASKED: Snippets & notes from a lifetime collection of journals  (pre-diagnosis).
Advocating for autistic acceptance.




August 6, 1994  


The other nite, while I studied for my psychology exam, Mummy called to inform me that I [my dog] may be dying … I decided to not think about it and schemed about how I was going to prevent anyone at school to ever discover the truth. I need to keep the two places distinct, distinguishable.


Kalpita Pathak
Age 19


“Nite”! 🤣 My favorite kind of stimming is spelling words in unexpected ways. I love writing them and reading them later gives me a little sparkly jolt. ✨


These bursts of happy-stims are more than just novelties. They give me a sense of bliss and safety in a world that is fraught with anxiety and unpredictability.


Even in this brief journal entry, I can *feel* how frantic I am to mask and protect myself from the casual cruelty of others.


What are some fun stims you have that bring a little smile on your face and make you feel protected?


This kind of compartmentalization is yet another form of masking.


Autistic people are often socialized to believe their feelings and needs are too much – inconvenient and selfish. To protect ourselves, we mask.


It is a lonely way to live. But we are conditioned to and rely on that compartmentalization to survive.


Our feelings and needs are valid. It is okay to cry (or not cry) about a beloved pet’s death. It is okay to expect friends to help support you through a loss. It is okay to ask for time alone.


You are not too much. You are not inconvenient. You are not selfish.