Sharing our Diagnosis with Close Friends

How can we tell others, especially our close friends and loved ones, that we are on the spectrum. The easiest route is to tell someone as soon as we meet them. However, what if we have friends we made before our diagnosis or there was some circumstance that kept us from disclosing early on. In these instances, I wait for a related topic to come up: mental health, food allergies, chronic pain, etc. Once one of these topics naturally comes up in conversation with my friend, I use it to disclose by saying something along the lines of: “I definitely can relate to (mental health concern/food allergy/chronic pain), because I am actually on the autism spectrum. I don’t think I’d ever told you before.” Then, I wait for the person’s response, preparing to reply to one or more of the following:
1. I would have never known.
2. Did you get an official diagnosis?
3. You have always been kind of odd.
4. My friend/cousin/relative is autistic.

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