Using the Restroom

Bio break, relieving yourself, whatever you want to call it.

Is it bad to hold your pee? – Heba Shaheed – YouTube TLDR: It can be.

Instead of asking if someone needs to use the bathroom, try asking if they can try to empty their bladders (hint – your kidneys are always working, so the answer will always be that there was at least something in their bladder, even if they weren’t feeling the urge to go).

Good explanations of why you should empty your bladder now instead of later? This bathroom is much nicer than the one at <location> or we’ll be traveling and stopping to find one later will be hard or might make you miss out on part of <activities>.

After using the toilet, make sure to wash your hands!


Figure out if your sense of thirst works (part of interoception). If you can go hours without getting thirsty, it might not be working so well.

If your “thirsty don’t work” then building in a hydration habit is important to avoid dehydration.

Ted Ed: What would happen if you didn’t drink water? – Mia Nacamulli – YouTube

Effective practice:

Water | Bunny’s Info-Dump (

Water Calculator: Water Intake Calculator – How much water should you drink per day? (


I’m lucky to have supportive friends and family.

I wish I had more local female friends that recognized their neurodivergence. People don’t want to be told that their camouflage is failing.

Right now zoom is tiring as I adjust to my new meds and new diagnosis, so it’s hard to connect with my openly neurodivergent female friends that all live out of state.

I’m posting this so that others might realize that they could be more open about being Autistic and various types of neurodivergent.

Or go take Penelope’s class: Autism research that fixes your life – Penelope Trunk Careers

Ehlers Danlos & Neurodiversity Research

I’m so excited, a friend of a friend just shared all this:

Dr. Eccles specific research areas are Neuroscience, Psychiatric and neurodevelopmental features of connective tissue disorders, Mechanisms of chronic pain and fatigue.

The quickest way to see a summary of all her 67 published medical research with active links to each is here:

Some titles of pubs just within the last 2 years:

  • Towards a Neurodiversity-Affirmative Approach for an Over-Represented and Under-Recognised Population: Autistic Adults in Outpatient Psychiatry
  • Joint Hypermobility Links Neurodivergence to Dysautonomia and Pain
  • Variant connective tissue (joint hypermobility) and dysautonomia are associated with multimorbidity at the intersection between physical and psychological health
  • Connecting brain and body: Transdiagnostic relevance of connective tissue variants to neuropsychiatric symptom expression

You Tube Videos:

Autistic Inertia vs ADHD?

PDA and/or ADHD (executive function problems) – It took reading a bunch of comments to realize that Autistic Inertia is probably just comorbid ADHD executive function challenges.

How to ADHD on YouTube has a lot of great videos on various ways to manage problems like this. Wall of Awful, Motivation Bridge, Procrastination, tools like SunSama, Pomodoros, Bullet Journals, body doubling (co-regulation for adults), accountability buddies

More of the same:

What is autistic inertia?

I’m not sure that giving things a new name is helpful. It’s executive function difficulties no matter what the “reason” is and know that means it’s easier to find solutions.

Names, Face Blindness and Gait

Are you bad with names or do you have face blindness?

What is face blindness anyway?

Depending upon the degree of impairment, some people with prosopagnosia may only have difficulty recognizing a familiar face; others will be unable to discriminate between unknown faces

Some degree of prosopagnosia is often present in children with autism and Asperger’s syndrome, and may be the cause of their impaired social development. 

…treatment should be to help the individual with prosopagnosia develop compensatory strategies. Adults who have the condition as a result of stroke or brain trauma can be retrained to use other clues to identify individuals.

Prosopagnosia can be socially crippling.  Individuals with the disorder often have difficulty recognizing family members and close friends.  They often use other ways to identify people, such as relying on voice, clothing, or unique physical attributes, but these are not as effective as recognizing a face.  Children with congenital prosopagnosia are born with the disability and have never had a time when they could recognize faces.  Greater awareness of autism, and the autism spectrum disorders, which involve communication impairments such as prosopagnosia, is likely to make the disorder less overlooked in the future.

Prosopagnosia | National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (

I don’t know if I can recognize faces or if I rely on gait, silhouette, voice, hair, clothing (accessories or style).

I can’t tell if my kiddo has it because when we look at photos either the kiddo doesn’t know who is it or someone has said who it is once ever and now it’s memorized.

Is that why my kiddo had such a strong aversion to live action tv shows and videos for so long?

Is that why I hated when my mom changed her hair style growing up – in addition to it being change, did it also make her harder to recognize?

Is that another reason that a limited wardrobe or a signature accessory is useful/preferred?

Do any of you recognize people by their gait?

This study is telling clinicians to look at how autistic kids walk to figure out how they feel since autistic people have such a hard time saying how we feel.

A friend said: faces have so much information on them that I can’t sort fast enough and I like recognizing people by their gait.

Labels – limiting or liberating?

I know many people feel concerned about labels. And in some cases labels can be limiting depending on where you live and the laws. The U.S. especially is prone to these issues. And until we challenge these limits, they will remain. Avoiding the labels is a privilege (generally of wealth or power). Which means we have a responsibility to take ownership of these labels and challenge any limits attached to them on behalf of those who cannot.

Outside of the needed advocacy though, it’s a matter of perspective.

I like to use left-handedness as an example.

A person doesn’t “have” left-handedness. They are left-handed. They are a lefty.

Does that limit them? Not that I see. It does however empower them to understand themselves and ask for or set up accommodations like getting left-handed scissors or asking to sit at a corner where they won’t bump elbows with a right-handed dining partner.

So – I don’t have autism, I am autistic. I am on the spectrum. I am neurodivergent. I get that person first language is supposed to be empowering, but it turns a trait into a disease or damage. Cancer is something you can have, the flu or a cold you can have. No one says I have left-handedness.

I have ADHD means I have executive function challenges/impairments/differences. I really wonder how much of ADHD is just sleep problems?

both conditions can involve delays in language, heightened sensory responses, defiant behavior, problems with regulating emotions and difficulty with planning and with inhibiting behavior. Both also appear in childhood

Decoding the overlap between autism and ADHD | Spectrum | Autism Research News (

ADHD alone – highly sensitive + sleep problems

Autism alone – highly sensitive + trauma or trauma epigenetics

Autism + ADHD – highly sensitive + trauma or trauma epigenetics + sleep problems

And if trauma can physically change the brain, and healing can also, then that would explain some of the struggles with finding structural causes.

So maybe I have Autism because I’m highly sensitive, had sleep problems because of tongue tie and childhood attachment trauma? I like the new umbrella term of high environmental sensitivity. And I think that neurodivergent works well as an umbrella term to just remind people that EVERYONE has a different brain and to check your assumptions that lead to conflict or challenge.

I am Autistic because I am highly environmentally sensitive and I experienced trauma. I have Autism because I am still working on healing my brain and my genes and my microbiome. I may be able to cure my Autism, but I will always be Autistic.

The other thing I like to do is the broken bone swap. It is something you can have. It is something you can heal from. Some people are able to heal quickly, some people heal slowly, and some people heal improperly, which you could also describe as some people never completely heal. That person is not defective, they have a problem. When you can see the problem, it makes it easy to be accommodating and either to know what accommodations might be needed or if you need to ask what accommodations would help.

Every mental “disorder” stems from a physical health problem. There is no such thing as “mental health” – there is only health. The sooner that becomes common knowledge, the sooner everyone can get the help they need.

Every time I write disorder, disabled and other words with dis- I get the urge to change it to diff-

Different order, different ability – because then instead of being not in order, not able, it recognizes that’s it’s a difference instead. And if that difference is a problem, then that is a problem of society/culture/community not understanding and accepting that difference.

Small talk scripts

We realized that the kiddo was either bursting into song or making up zany stories because they didn’t know how to respond to “What did you do yesterday/this weekend/this morning/etc.?”

So here are some options:

  • I don’t remember.
  • I can’t recall at the moment.
  • I forget.
  • Nothing interesting/too interesting/special/worth talking about.
  • Not much.
  • The usual.
  • I’m not sure, let me ask <person>/check my journal.

Follow up these types of responses with:

  • What did you <repeat their question>?
  • How about you?
  • Enough about me, what about you?

Or for people you are closer too or will interact with more often, you can use something like this instead:

  • I’d rather hear what you did.
  • Why do you ask?
  • Is it ok to skip the small talk/formalities?
  • I wonder if you’re asking to connect, and if so, can we just hug/sing a hello song/<other ritual of connection>?
  • Nothing I want to discuss, can we talk about <topic> instead?
  • Do you actually want to know or are you being polite, and if you’re being polite, can we pretend I gave a polite reply?
  • I acknowledge and accept your bid for social engagement, let’s go play!
  • Socially acceptable response of your choice.
    • The above one is best used with someone familiar as it is more flippant than polite.

Notes for NT folks, if you get an unexpected response, you have two choices: get offended or get curious. Please choose curiosity and kindness. Some options that might help:

  • Wait, I’m confused, did you hear my question?
    • Do you want help with answering it?
  • Hmm, I wonder if you are having trouble answering my question?
  • Does this mean you’re ready to get going/started/skip the small talk?
  • I feel sad/hurt/disconnected when I don’t get the expected response to my bid for connection. Is there some way you feel comfortable acknowledging that I’m trying to connect?