I’ve always been someone with a high need for autonomy. One might even call me a demand-avoidant.
Growing up, I was known as a “stubborn, rebellious child” who did things their way (even if my way frustrated and perplexed people around me).
“Defiant,” “oppositional,” “strong-willed,” “opinionated,” “inflexible,” “disobedient,” “contrarian,” “insubordinate,” “rigid,” “unruly,” “bull-headed,” – if it’s another word for rebel I’ve been called it. This is the main reason I named my blog “NeuroDivergent Rebel” – because I’m reclaiming a term used to describe me for most of my life (one that was not intended as a compliment).
The reasons for my “rebellions” were often misunderstood by the adults around me, especially when I would “refuse” to do even the things I wanted to do and enjoyed (when those things felt compelled).
Demands can feel suffocating to me. This can be demands from other people, such as when people tell me what to do, but extends further to even things I want to do (or need to do to take care of myself), such as making myself something to eat, going to the bathroom, or exercising.
The expectations of other people and society (like gender roles) can feel like they’re trapping me, triggering a visceral fight/flight response within me – one I’ve learned to internalize over the years.
Emails, text messages, and phone calls still trigger me, but I’ve grown better at doing what I need to do even if I’m triggered.
Children are not allowed to have autonomy in many modern societies. They are often expected to obey the adults around them without question.
When I was younger, my struggles with being “trapped” by demands and expectations (of myself and others) was harder for me to hide, and I was much more prone to melting or shutting down when the crushing weight of it became too much.
As an adult, I have learned to “explode internally” and can bounce back faster from my triggers than when I was younger.
To receive new posts (like this one) delivered directly to your inbox 2-3 times each week (and support my work), please consider becoming a subscriber.
I’m creating a new community on Substack, and I hope you’ll join me as a free member (but I also have paid subscriptions that are only $5/month – less if you subscribe annually if you want access to bonus content).
FREE subscribers on Substack get content, too! Everyone gets something (because I believe education should be accessible).
*Patreon members and Facebook Subscribers ALSO got access to THIS post.
In addition to Substack (because I STRONGLY believe educational resources should be affordable), I also offer discounted subscriptions on Patreon. On Patreon, I always offer a pay-what-you-can subscription (starting at $1 a month – less when you subscribe annually).
The NeuroDivergent Rebel Blog is a reader-supported publication. Without the help of my readers, free resources LIKE THIS ONE wouldn’t be possible.
If you’re low on funds, you can also help support my work by sharing this post.
It would mean a lot to me,