UCL Discovery
UCL home » Library Services » Electronic resources » UCL Discovery

“Don't treat autistic people like they're a problem, because we're not!”: An exploration of what underpins the relationship between masking and mental health for autistic teenagers

Chapman, Louise; (2020) “Don't treat autistic people like they're a problem, because we're not!”: An exploration of what underpins the relationship between masking and mental health for autistic teenagers. Doctoral thesis (D.Clin.Psy), UCL (University College London). Green open access

[thumbnail of Chapman_10114301_Thesis_Vol1_sig_removed.pdf]
Preview
Text
Chapman_10114301_Thesis_Vol1_sig_removed.pdf

Download (1MB) | Preview

Abstract

Autistic people have described masking, or ‘camouflaging’, parts of the self in order to avoid repeated bullying, discrimination, social rejection and in order to meet neuro-normative social expectations. This thesis explores the relationship between autistic people’s experiences of masking and mental health. Part 1 is a conceptual introduction to autism, mental health and masking. Explanations for the increased prevalence of mental health difficulties for autistic people are explored. Masking is identified as a potential factor mediating this relationship. The review discusses different ways of conceptualising masking and explores the drivers and consequences of masking for autistic people. The review concludes with a summary of existing research into the relationship between masking and mental health difficulties. Part 2 is a qualitative study seeking to understand autistic teenager’s experiences of masking and how this relates to their mental health. Semi structured interviews were conducted with 20 autistic teenagers and transcripts were analysed using thematic analysis. Bidirectional relationships between masking and negative mental health related factors, and conversely between authenticity and positive mental health related factors, were described. Both processes were driven by social and environmental factors. The findings support a broader conceptualisation of masking and have implications for diagnostic and therapeutic clinical services. Part 3 is a critical appraisal of the research process. Personal reflexivity is used to consider the impact of the researcher’s perspective on the research. Introspection is used to identify broader theoretical perspectives to inform system-level implications of the research. Reflections on the essentiality of co-production are also presented.

Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Qualification: D.Clin.Psy
Title: “Don't treat autistic people like they're a problem, because we're not!”: An exploration of what underpins the relationship between masking and mental health for autistic teenagers
Event: University College London
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Language: English
Additional information: Copyright © The Author 2020. Original content in this thesis is licensed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0) Licence (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/). Any third-party copyright material present remains the property of its respective owner(s) and is licensed under its existing terms. Access may initially be restricted at the author’s request.
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Div of Psychology and Lang Sciences
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10114301
Downloads since deposit
317Downloads
Download activity - last month
Download activity - last 12 months
Downloads by country - last 12 months

Archive Staff Only

View Item View Item