The Gas-lighting of Women and Girls on the Autism Spectrum

I have been sitting here reading this article, and all the comments, and feeling more and more charged up, with feet tapping, holding my breath, rocking, and an overpowering feeling of connection to all of this.
I am nearly 60, recently resorted to anti-depressants after a major meltdown in life; and with frequently changing diagnosis in addition to major depressive disorder (which has never felt correct to me). ADHD was the first, minor BP another, they were both dropped by a new doc, then adhd re added along with Straterra.
I am starting to wonder if this could be the answer after all. Like many, I was told no because I am empathic, I laugh, and hyper aware of body language. Lately I am thinking perhaps that in reality my inability to understand the boundaries of others, my lack of the understanding of time passing, and avoidance issues might point to ASD.
Hmmm, what else… cathartic panic meltdowns in relationship disagreements that make no sense to me whatsoever. The Zoloft has mellowed the meltdowns mostly… but leave me feeling apathetic and non creatively inspired.
One odd bit, strange nerve jolts thru my body when I was tired and cold… the Zoloft mellowed that out as well, although they come back immediately if I miss a couple doses.
Very textural… if clothes feel wrong I will not wear them. Music can consume me… smells are powerful… are any of these things signs?
It is just that when I read blogs and such by people on the spectrum, I can relate! This and other blog posts by Seventh Voice are very informative.

Seventh Voice

Artwork by Mirella Santana

Of all the traits attributed to Women on the Autism Spectrum, there remains one that not only continues to go unrecognized as a valid trait but has also suffered the fate of being reconstructed by professionals as a rationale for denying Women a diagnosis.

The trait I’m referring to is that of developing a strong sense of self-awareness.

In almost every description pertaining to the experiences of Women with Asperger’s Syndrome there is evidence of the development of an early, inexplicable sense of ‘otherness,’ to be found.

This sense of ‘otherness’ expands exponentially as girls grow older and develops into a keen sense of self-awareness.

Their strong sense of self-awareness in turn, increases their sensitivity toward any and all experiences that suggest or confirm their perceptions of themselves as different.

Undoubtedly, whilst at school, undiagnosed spectrum girls will find themselves showered, almost daily, with an endless array of situations that…

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Autumn and Mount Adams


Driving up Highway 141 recently, just before the snow made angels out of burned trees from the Dry Creek Fire, I rolled down my window to soak in the mountain valley air.  The smell of this Summers wildfire mingles with the rich fungal odor of fall.  Surely the Morel mushrooms must be happy, I thought with a wry grin. (More writing and photos below)

Rivers of fog draped across the mountain sides like an undulating snake,  or a scarf tossed carelessly over a shoulder.  Perhaps now that the Drycreek drainage is showing off the new shape that was hidden under the tall evergreens, she’s heading out to a winter party to show off.

Sighing deeply at the loss of the luxuriant evergreen giants, The smile returns as I contemplate the new growth already manifesting on the hillside. Elk, Bear, and Deer will love this change that will bring in more low growing forage of leaf and berries. I recall the bear from a couple summers ago that was feasting on wild blackberries or currents out in the older clear-cut that has been growing back.  Change is part of a forest, both natural and manmade, and often brings about a healthier ecosystem.  Not always, of course, at least not in the short term. However looking at the long-term picture of which we are just a very small part, the world has been changing throughout its history and we live such a short amount of time we tend to think it’s always been this way.  Have we affected these changes?  Certainly we have, and not always for the best, but change will still happen without us at its own pace.  We just seem to rush it along.


The photos in the post, along with many other images from 2017 are in this gallery

Clicking the link opens a new tab or window.

Meanwhile near Glenwood lovely fall leaves of Vine Maple, Dogwood, Elderberry, and Cottonwood reflected beautifully in a small stream. Glenwood-Fall_10-15-17-1054



Back in mid October, Outlet Falls was starting to increase the water flow.  I am sure by now there is a great deal more water. Glenwood-fall-OutletFalls_10-15-17_0950


I finally spotted my first elk herd of the season on Conboy National Wildlife Refuge recently… was not able to get good quality pics but sharing anyway.  The real treat was watching them come out of the field, up and over a fence and across the road, flowing like a river of brown.  They are so big, yet so graceful.



Here we have a series of Mount Adams from Glenwood, taken about 2 weeks apart.
This first one is October 1, 2017.MtAdams_Glenwood_10-01-17-9752

Next is sunrise October 14.  Notice the snow around and below treeline?  That whole area is a burn scar, hit first by the Cold Springs fire in 2008 and more recently hit hard by the Cougar Creek Fire in 2015.  A bit further west, the burn scar continues its way along the south and west sides of the mountain from the Cascade Creek Fire of 2012.  There have been other fires before those 3 as well, and the Huckleberry bushes love coming back in burns.  Wildflower meadows thrive as well, and the Elk and Deer have more grazing areas.  Glenwood-Fall-MtAdams-sunrise-0897

Sunrise on Halloween DayGlenwood_MtAdams_Alpenglow_10-31-2017-2464

Later on Halloween Day, with a short lived lenticular cloud capGlenwood_MtAdams_Lenticular_10-31-2017_2625

and rainbow from November 1, 2017. Glenwood_MtAdams_Rainbow_11-1-2017_2663

I would love to hear from you..  which were your favorite photos, perhaps, or what fall means to you!

Also, you can check out the menu links on the blog, and click on Photo Galleries to see many more of my photos.   The photos above along with many other images from 2017 are in this gallery

Clicking the link opens a new tab or window.

Thanks for your feedback!


Rainbow Weather

Last night barrels and buckets full of rain fell in Glenwood, WA and in much of the northwest.  In spite of flooded foundations and water over the roadway, it all looks beautiful when the sun pops out and a rainbow shines. 

This last rainbow is one from Friday, October 20 along Highway 141 near White Salmon, Washington. 

Who am I really? I AM loving kindness. I am no more than the leaves dancing on the trees and no less than the stars dancing overhead. I am the roots seeking moisture and nourishment as they stretch under the earth. I am the wind forming and dissolving dancing with moisture, creating clouds, making the trees dance. I am the mountain under your feet, the rocks that break apart with the heaving and thawing of frost. I am the sand in the river bottom as the water tumbles the rocks down steep rocky cliffs and through peaceful meadows. I am the water, the lifeblood, that falls from the heavens, from moisture laden clouds, runs down the mountain and dances to the sea. I am the sun, as it warms the water of the ocean and lifts the molecules of moisture and air high into the atmosphere to travel around the world in across the mountains where it drops once again.

I AM Love.

I am the tears of grief and joy, the warm hugs a mother gives her child. I am the hand of safety and comfort in emergencies. I am the gift of a coat or blanket on frozen dark Night. I am the sweat and racing heart of a fireman saving lives and animals and homes. I am the fire that consumes, purifies, cleans, destroys, and renews. I am at the Phoenix born from the ashes rising with new life. I am the empathetic heart of the world. There is no separation. What I do to others is done to ME.

I AM One Heart Beating in unison and strength, in fear and grief. In joy and acceptance.


~Darlisa Black, 2017

Thank you for your Help!

Many of you have seen my GoFundMe campaign by now, and I will be picking up my car today I think.  The generosity and kindness of friends, family and strangers has been overwhelmingly positive, and I am filled with gratitude.

the photo, taken this month in Glenwood, Washington, will take you to my campaign page on GoFundMe if you want to help out with licencing, winter tires, and insurance now!  I have the costs of the vehicle covered.  The link will open in a new window or tab in your browser.

Thank you again!  Check out my photography on smugmug by going to Menu on this page, and clicking on Photo Galleries.

Beautiful Day in Paradise

I feel so blessed to be able to stay with friends in Glenwood for this transition time between homes.  The air is so fresh, conversations so lively and profound, in between long spells of mutual silence working on separate projects on our computers.


This is a land of broad expansiveness, Conboy Lake National Wildlife Refuge, people helping one another, and Mount Adams over it all.

Conboy-MtAdams with Lennies-9633-5

I was blessed to take some of many photos yesterday of my great niece Hannah’s wedding to Brandon, and have been processing those today.  Here are a few faves so far.  Laughter was a strong component:



One last photo from 9/23/17 from sunset in Goldendale, WA.

IMG_6668 (1)


Wishing you all a wonderful week, and much beauty around you.

Click here for My GoFundMe Campaign to raise money for a working vehicle

Thank you