"Never be ashamed of being different: it is this difference that makes you extraordinary and unique."
This essential go-to guide gives you all the advice and tools you'll need to help you flourish and achieve what you want in life. From the answers to everyday questions such as 'Am I using appropriate body language?' and 'Did I say the wrong thing?', through to discussing the importance of understanding your emotions, looking after your physical and mental health and coping with anxiety and sensory overloads, award-winning neurodiversity campaigner Siena Castellon uses her own experiences to provide you with the skills to overcome any challenge.
With practical tips on friendships, dating, body image, consent and appearance, as well as how to survive school and bullying, The Spectrum Girl's Survival Guide gives you the power to embrace who you are, reminding you that even during the toughest of teen moments, you are never alone.
Neurodiversity campaigner Siena Castellon's The Spectrum Girl's Survival Guide is a must read for young autistic girls. It offers a range of advice and tips relating to real-life real-world issues. An instant classic!
— Sarah Wild, Headteacher, Limpsfield Grange School
This marvellous book provides a very personal but also very practical insight into the life of an autistic adolescent. Siena Castellon generously shares her own story, turning her experiences into helpful advice, stunningly illustrated by Rebecca Burgess. I'd recommend this book for autistic teens and their siblings, parents, classmates and teachers too.
— Dr Sue Fletcher-Watson, University of Edinburgh
Siena Castellon is a talented, driven and passionate young woman and one to watch in future years. I am proud to have her as one of my young charity ambassadors. This book is a valuable resource for girls and women recently diagnosed on the Autism spectrum. I am sure this will be one of many books to be written by Siena! Congratulations.
— Dr Anna Kennedy OBE, Founder of UK Autism Charity AnnaKennedyonline
Navigating life as an adolescent is perilous. No joke, I did try it once! Spectrum Girls is the ultimate guide to surviving this monumental stage in life, giving the reader the much-needed manual to many questions and situations that are often bewildering or difficult, but often intuitively known by non-autistic peers. At 16, Siena pours her wealth of experience, knowledge and compassion for fellow teens into this book, covering numerous situations that could be encountered. This book is a must read and a companion that will support you all the way.
— Barb Cook, M.Aut., Developmental Educator, Autism and Neurodiversity Employment Consultant and editor/author of Spectrum Women: Walking to the Beat of Autism
Siena has articulated the details of life that can be used as a blueprint for girls on the spectrum. She has powerfully illustrated many important concepts on how to focus on strengths and interests to build a healthy identity. This book is a gift not only to girls on the spectrum but also others who care about them. This book will be a great resource for neurodiverse girls, their parents and providers.
— Lawrence Fung, M.D., Ph.D., Director, Stanford Neurodiversity Project and Assistant Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Stanford University
This is a truly wonderful and welcome addition to any school library, CAMHS service and a 'must read' for any young woman who has autism - and indeed other learning-differences. Siena is a leading advocate and voice for young people and a champion of the neurodiversity movement. Like many neurodiverse young people, Siena calls for a paradigm shift in our understanding of intelligence, ability and employability that is relevant to the 21st Century. Siena not only challenges the stereotypes and stigma, but talks honestly about her own experiences, offering practical advice, guidance and encouragement to other young women with Autism, ADHD, dyspraxia and dyslexia.
— Dr Tony Lloyd, Chief executive of The ADHD Foundation Neurodiversity Charity
Siena's book is like having the big sister you always wished you had! Young women are obliged by society to fit in, to overlook natural instincts and wariness, to overrule our internal voices and rely on the opinions of others, this guide helps normalise some of the internal anxieties and insecurities that are common for neurodiverse girls. Some of the advice in this book is useful for all young women, particularly the notes on mental health, fashion and taking care of your body! But the focus on sensory overwhelm and co-occurring conditions is essential reading for the neurodiverse teen, and those wanting to include and support neurodiverse teens. Siena writes at the right level for the uninitiated reader - no psycho babble just solid, evidence-based advice translated into stories and examples that make sense. The Spectrum Girl's Survival Guide is EXACTLY what the title described, I cannot recommend it highly enough. Such a resource you have provided, Siena. Well-blooming-done!
— Dr Nancy Doyle C. Psychol., CEO and founder of Genius Within
About the Author:
Siena Castellon is a 17-year-old internationally recognised and multi-award-winning autism advocate and anti-bullying campaigner who is on the autism spectrum. She has won a BBC Radio 1 Teen Hero Award, Observer New Radical Award and the British Citizen Youth Award and is affiliated with the UCL Centre for Research in Autism and Education. She lives in London with her parents and her pet dog Rico.