Autism | Neurodivergent

3 Subtle Signs of Autism

Spotting Signs of Autism For Their Better Development

Som Dutt ☯
Psychology Simplified
4 min readMay 17, 2024


3 Subtle Signs of Autism-by “Som Dutt” on Medium
Photo by Alireza Attari on Unsplash

Our brain-neuron connection plays a special role in our development. But due to some genetic and environmental factors such as maternal diabetes, smoking, obesity, and air pollution sometimes these neurons and patterns get arranged differently and start functioning in a manner that affects our overall brain growth.

One of these developmental conditions is called Autism where the child’s growth does not take place like other normal kids. He can experience delayed speech development, he prefers to be alone and so uncommon social behaviors.

Sometimes the children do not even respond to his name. Recent studies suggest that 1 in 36 children in the USA is affected with Autism and a boy is 4 times more likely to have autism than a girl.

“What would happen if the autism gene was eliminated from the gene pool?

You would have a bunch of people standing around in a cave, chatting and socializing and not getting anything done.”
― Temple Grandin,
The Way I See It: A Personal Look at Autism & Asperger’s

An Autistic child does not show a single solid sign but a combination of different behaviors that can lead to autism. This is what makes it a little complex to identify.

In this article, we will try to identify the 3 subtle signs of autism that whispers early can give hope to us to identify and understand autism in a better way.

1. An Autistic Child Have Uncommon Play Interests.

An autistic child does not develop habits like other children. He can be an aversion to touching. Sometimes he can avoid and ignore danger. He can even avoid eye contact.

“Autists are the ultimate square pegs, and the problem with pounding a square peg into a round hole is not that the hammering is hard work. It’s that you’re destroying the peg.”
― Paul Collins

Unlike other children who would love to explore different games and different activities, an autistic child’s toys are limited and more focused. His level of interest does not usually match with other children.

He is more interested in particular activities and toys and completely ignores other activities and toys. He can often be found doing repetitive activities.

2. An Autistic Child Have Difficulties Engaging In Social Activities.

Social dynamics, interaction, and understanding of an autistic child are more complex. He can face both verbal and non-verbal communication problems when he is exposed to the public.

“If I could snap my fingers and be nonautistic, I would not. Autism is part of what I am.”
― Temple Grandin

He prefers to play and live alone. He can experience social anxieties due to his lack of interest in hanging around with a group of children.

Therefore, it becomes very hard for them to trust others and form meaningful friendships that can be sustained for a longer period.

“I think that people with autism are born outside the regime of civilization. Sure, this is just my own made-up theory, but I think that, as a result of all the killings in the world and the selfish planet-wrecking that humanity has committed, a deep sense of crisis exists. Autism has somehow arisen out of this. Although people with autism look like other people physically, we are in fact very different in many ways. We are more like travelers from the distant, distant past. And if, by our being here, we could help the people of the world remember what truly matters for the Earth, that would give us a quiet pleasure.”
― Naoki Higashida,
The Reason I Jump: the Inner Voice of a Thirteen-Year-Old Boy with Autism

3. An Autistic Child Have Uncommon Routine Behavior.

An autistic child’s neurodivergent nature leads him to have uncommon routine behaviors in his daily activities. He has trouble in nights of sleep. Therefore, sometimes he needs some special care in doing his daily activities from their parents.

“Think of it: a disability is usually defined in terms of what is missing. … But autism … is as much about what is abundant as what is missing, an over-expression of the very traits that make our species unique.”
― Paul Collins,
Not Even Wrong: Adventures in Autism

An autistic child loves to do repetitive things and disruptions in repetitive daily routines can cause huge stress to him. For example the sudden timetable or unexpected trip, or a sudden visit by a parent friend, or family member.

Such sudden changes in their activities can trigger a feeling of uncomfortable in their mind and they also have some problems in adjusting to new environment and conditions, which can lead to evoke negative emotions in them.

“A person with autism lives in his own world, while a person with Asperger’s lives in our world, in a way of his own choosing”
― Nicholas Sparks,
Dear John

Therefore, a parent, teachers, and caregivers need to understand such subtle signs of autism so that they can keep track of these things about the child. It can help them to create a more empathetic, supportive, and comfortable environment for the children.



Som Dutt ☯
Psychology Simplified

Top writer in Philosophy & Psychology Since 2021. I make people Think, Relate, Feel & Move. For My Detailed Long Essays visit —