The relationship between autism and PTSD has historically been neglected in research and understanding but impacts the lives of many. Autistic people are intrinsically vulnerable to traumatic social situations and relationships, which can later manifest as PTSD. Navigating situations where one feels entirely at odds can lead seemingly commonplace events to be processed as traumatic experiences.
In this unique collaboration, Lisa Morgan and Mary Donahue explore PTSD in autistic adults as patient and practitioner. Lisa shares her personal experiences as an autistic adult, reflecting on emotionally traumatic events and their effect on her daily life. Mary examines the challenges surrounding diagnosis, reworking and developing communication and clarifying the symptoms of PTSD within the autistic population.
Combining lived experience with professional expertise, this clear and accessible guide will provide a better understanding of autism and PTSD, providing support and direction to autistic adults processing trauma and those involved in their care.
Lisa Morgan is a Certified Autism Specialist (CAS) and holds a Masters degree in the Art of Teaching in Special Education. She has previously authored Living Through Suicide Loss with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) (JKP 2016) and is a senior editor for the Spectrum Women online magazine. She also is co-chair of the Autism and Suicide committee of the American Association of Suicidology (AAS).
Mary P. Donahue, Ph.D is a psychologist specialising in trauma and loss and working in private practice. She is a collaborator for The Center for Grieving Children and has developed specialised Providing a Safe Shoulder training for helpers wishing to assist victims of domestic abuse. She is also a Red Cross Disaster Mental Health Volunteer, and is the author of three books for teens on bullying, disability and domestic violence.
1. History of ASD/PTSD
2. Living with an ASD
3. Living with PTSD
4. ASD meets PTSD
6. Types of Lived Trauma over Time
7. Exploitative Relationships
8. Challenges in Recognising Interpersonal Abuse in ASD
9. First Responders and Other Professionals
10. Finding a Helpful Therapeutic Approach
An examination of PTSD within adults on the autistic spectrum, uniquely combining lived experience with professional insights