Perry E, Mandy W, Hull L & Cage E (2022) Understanding Camouflaging as a Response to Autism-Related Stigma: A Social Identity Theory Approach. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 52 (2), pp. 800-810. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10803-021-04987-w
Camouflaging refers to strategies used by autistic people to mask or hide social difficulties. The current study draws on Social Identity Theory to examine the relationship between camouflaging and autism-related stigma, testing the hypothesis that camouflaging represents an individualistic strategy in response to stigma. Two hundred and twenty-three autistic adults completed an online survey measuring perceived autism-related stigma, individualistic and collective strategies, camouflaging and mental wellbeing. Results indicated that higher camouflaging was positively associated with autism-related stigma and both individualistic and collective strategy use. Autism-related stigma was associated with lower wellbeing however this relationship was not mediated by camouflaging. These findings demonstrate how stigma contributes to camouflaging and highlight the complexities of navigating autistic identity while still camouflaging.
Camouflaging; Stigma; Autistic identity; Psychological wellbeing; Social Identity Theory
Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders: Volume 52, Issue 2
|Publication date online||31/03/2021|
|Date accepted by journal||20/03/2021|
|Publisher||Springer Science and Business Media LLC|