Before I found out I was Autistic, I was a punk

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As a lonely and misfit teenager, I was naturally drawn to alternative subcultures like punk and goth. The music captured the alienation I felt and was a cathartic outlet for my angst. Looking up to badass alternative musicians also gave me the strength and resilience to always get back up after facing major setbacks in life.

Alternative music was pretty much the only thing I could relate to in this world, so it defined a huge part of my identity before I discovered I was Autistic.

The ethos of punk also deeply resonated with me. It wasn’t until later in life that I realised why. Here are a few ways in which I feel the punk ethos parallels with Autistic traits and the Neurodivergent community…


Punk is all about rejecting restrictive societal expectations, a trait that often naturally aligns with the Autistic experience. We thrive on authenticity!

Strong principles

Punk champions standing up for what you believe in, no matter the cost. This tenacity is something many Autistic individuals can relate to. Our unwavering principles can set us apart in a world that often pressures us to compromise our integrity.

DIY ethic

The Do-It-Yourself ethic of punk, with its emphasis on creating your own culture rather than consuming what’s handed to you, mirrors the Autistic penchant for special interests and inventing creative strategies to navigate a world not designed for us.

Community for misfits

Punk created a sanctuary for those who felt misunderstood and rejected by mainstream society. Similarly, the neurodiversity movement provides a community for those of us whose brains operate differently. It’s a place where being a misfit is not just accepted, but celebrated.

Autistic As Fxxk is very much influenced by the rebellious ethos and aesthetics of punk culture. I was inspired by the creative DIY spirit of punk and riot grrrl zines from the 70s to 90s. Just like those zines, Autistic As Fxxk serves as a platform for unfiltered self-expression, challenging societal norms, and fostering community among Neurodivergents.

The realisation that I was Autistic didn’t erase my punk identity; it deepened it. Understanding my neurodivergence has helped me to see my past with clearer eyes and to recognise that my attraction to alternative subcultures wasn’t just about the music or the fashion—it was a prelude to discovering my authentic self, one power chord at a time.

T-shirt now available!

“Before I found out I was Autistic, I was a punk” t-shirt front design
“Before I found out I was Autistic, I was a punk” t-shirt back design

One of my Instagram followers suggested that I turn this design into a t-shirt, so here it is!! Available as a front or back design and in 8 different colours.

I made a minor tweak to the wording on the t-shirt (with help from my Instagram followers!) as while the original title makes sense in the context of this blog post, as a t-shirt, it seems to imply that the wearer of the t-shirt is no longer punk, which is definitely not my intention!

Get your t-shirt now!

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