I stim to communicate my feelings

Stimming is a wonderful language in itself

By Victoria H. | July 9, 2021

This is a guest blog by an aspiring writer, Victoria Handy. Victoria is studying to be a behavior analyst. And describes herself as an awesome autistic. 

A young women wearing green and a black hat, makes a peace sign with one hand as she holds a whiteboard sign that says "Victoria, 28: Stim: stick tongue out when thinking"

Stimming. What is it? It is a physical behavior that occurs with many emotions and feelings in autistic individuals. I personally like to call it "stimmies". It also can be a quirk. It is beautifully unique as much as you are. Please don't feel bad for it. People are always going to have something to say about something or someone or a behavior that doesn't fit into their views and expectations about normalcy. SO WHAT!! I stim and my daughter does too! Our stims come from the fact that often we may communicate our feelings through our behavior. This is true among those who can't communicate verbally.  I look at stimming as a wonderful language in itself. It is a beautiful extension of our autism. 

Growing up, I had alot of them. I was looked at as weird, bullied, singled out. Everything you can possibly imagine not happening to your child when you send them to school, I been through it. It was even harder when teachers didn't care which basically allowed the peer abuse to get worse. Even in college,  the annual 'crazy girl' and 'weirdo' stories about me was passed down to every incoming freshman class for years.

There were a few of those who when given the chance to get to know me did come to accept me. Others just went on what others said without actually finding out for themselves. Even when someone deliberately pushed too far and I reacted in anger and my stimming behavior showed, I still was looked at as crazy. Even though someone else was at fault. Of course, my decision to try to fit in made the situation worse because I am not one of them. That was one of many bad choices I made in my life. Those choices came from the same origin: to fit in which never worked out. And THAT'S AWESOME! I see now that was something special. You can't shine your light if you hide behind multiple clouds also known as haters. A favorite poem of mine has the line "our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure..." 

There is no limit to how much magic we can add to the world. There is no way anyone can measure us. The best example I can use is Kodi Lee from AGT. His audition stunned the world with his musical talent and he's autistic like us. I want to pass that on to you as well my own daughter that we have been truly been given a gift albeit in different ways and different "stimmies". The same people that judge are the ones in awe by our abilities. Even though some of my stimming isn't obvious, it's still there. Let's light the world with our stimming one beautiful autistic at a time.  

For #DisabilityPrideMonth, we want your help to destigmatize non-harmful #stimming like Victoria! Tell us how and why you stim by submitting your story and photo by filling out this form for a chance to be featured on our social media.

Autism Speaks does not provide medical or legal advice or services. Rather, Autism Speaks provides general information about autism as a service to the community. The information provided on our website is not a recommendation, referral or endorsement of any resource, therapeutic method, or service provider and does not replace the advice of medical, legal or educational professionals. Autism Speaks has not validated and is not responsible for any information, events, or services provided by third parties. The views and opinions expressed in blogs on our website do not necessarily reflect the views of Autism Speaks.

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