Meltdowns and shutdowns

Meltdowns are when an autistic person can’t control our feelings, and they happen when someone gets too stressed. People having meltdowns might scream or cry, run away, or lose control of our body.

Shutdowns can also happen when someone gets too stressed. A shutdown is when someone stops being able to do anything. We might not be able to talk or move.

Meltdowns and shutdowns feel scary to autistic people, and they can look scary to other people. But they don’t happen on purpose, and they are not the same thing as tantrums. Autistic people can’t control when we have a meltdown or shutdown.