09/12/2013 11:32 GMT | Updated 08/02/2014 05:59 GMT

Dear Susan... An Open Letter to Susan Boyle

Susan Boyle is an alternative thinker and has been diagnosed as having an Autistic Spectrum Condition. No real shock for those of us who live and breathe ASC. So to you Susan, I write this letter...

Dear Susan

You have found that you have an Autistic Spectrum Condition (Asperger's Syndrome). This will be either a relief or a shock for you. Whatever it is, it will now help you to put your life into context and understand who you really are. You are wired differently, you think differently, but none of this compromises your incredible talent!

The good things are many. You are probably a straight forward, honest person who sings because you enjoy it, not because it is a cool thing to do. You are unlikely to need the motivators of money and praise to achieve excellence. You will achieve because you are conscientious and have pride in your own abilities.

One of the most impressive things about alternative thinking people is they often spend a lot of time alone, which means they develop their own ideas and thoughts rather than those of the majority. Your sense of logic is probably so strong that it is illogical to those of us for whom, emotion takes over from logic so frequently.

The less positive aspects of having ASC are that people will spend a lifetime trying to change you. They will apply their own values and norms to you. Whether it is how you wear your hair, what clothes you wear, or how and where you chose to live, people will pressurise you to embrace their values and norms rather than your own. Not being allowed to be yourself and live how you want to live may cause you high levels of anxiety and stress. It wouldn't do for any of us if we were constantly made to think that our thoughts and values were not 'right'.

It is often difficult for people who have ASC to understand who their real friends are. There will be people who will be nice to you, pretend to be your friend and be representing your best interests. Unfortunately many of these people are more likely only representing their own interests. True friends are those who are not trying to change you, they accept who you are and will stand with you against the pressures you face to step out of your preferred world, into the insincere and image driven world of the masses.

I don't seek to stereotype people with ASC and there are no truer words than "if you have met one person with Autism you have only met one person with Autism". However, people with ASC do consistently say it can be a lonely place to be. Most have been bullied or ridiculed at some time in their life and this is usually always because of their norms and values not aligning with the majority.

Be true to yourself Susan, you are a unique and talented individual. Don't let other people's opinions make you feel inadequate or insecure. You think differently to the majority of people, it's as simple as that. Any stress or anxiety you feel is not because there is anything wrong with you, it's because unfortunately, the world is not quite ready for the honest and logical way many people with ASC want to live their lives.

Sing if you want to sing, conquer the word and get rich if you want to, live how you want to live, be who you want to be not who others want you to be. Do not let people make you believe you are difficult, awkward or unreasonable just because you want to be you.

Good luck, embrace and enjoy your future as a proud alternative thinker


Lesa Walton