Hi just want to seek advice on whether to admit autism to my future employers and how badly would it affect my job aspects and if I could make up for it thru other means. I have high functioning autism and the way I process information is different from people, I struggle in expressing myself but I have been taking steps in improving.
Backstory - I came from a background where I was a shut-in once and had to pick myself up. I manage to stand up again once I found programming thru a friend and it changed my life by giving me a sense of purpose and so for a year + I have been picking up programming subjects in school and my own time. I managed to progress and constantly been improving myself. I completed school in April and enrolled myself in a 12-week Bootcamp because I was very isolated when I was learning to program and wanted to build real projects and since the Bootcamp was not a coding school but a software consultant company I found it would be beneficial for me for networking as well as picking up social skills.
The Bootcamp went well so far for 8 weeks, picked up relevant skills and the instructor experience was the most beneficial since they share industry experience I was also progressing well and learning new things. I had no issues with the task and work since it was mostly individual work.
But despite my progress, I was trying very hard to hide that I am autistic and didn’t want people to know so I forced myself to adapt. This went on until our group project for a real client where I struggled the most.
We are a team of 5 and our team comprise of 2 pairs and 1 qa working on user stories which rotates regularly so that everyone knows what each other are doing. (we were following agile). For 1 week i was struggling in keeping up with the pace of what is going on and it wasnt the code that i was struggling but soft skills. Like discussing what could bring value to the client and etc as well as making careless mistakes (making big git commit instead of small code commits naming files outside what we discussed)
I came to the point i had to bring up to my team that i am autistic doing my standup. Thankfully my team were understanding and supportive of me including my instructor and were very nice throughout the week.
i was happy about the outcome and it was my first step in letting people know about it, but it had me thinking on how would i bring this up for interviews, i feel i should be honest to my interviewer and explain how i make up for it. But i fear getting discriminated compared to my peers and get lower pay from expectation and i do not want to be in a workplace where i have to put on a mask to hide to get the job done as i feel that if im comfortable letting people know about it as i will be able to work alot better.
I used to think that i can hide my autism and make up for it by my programming skills and ignored the importance of soft skills and working in a team till that week which makes me realize how important they were.
This is kind of long but i hope to seek some advice on how i could convey the message about my autism in interviews.