When you’re a late-diagnosed autistic (in my case, midlife), the retcon of your life can include newly-realized explanations for things that you do. These things don’t have to be major. For me, I discovered that I engage in echolalia, but primarily when I am watching television. (I don’t think I do it in conversation?) I’d never even heard the term before, until stumbling across it from one actually-autistic person or another. Not only will I find myself echoing lines or dialogue, or entire exchanges, sometimes I will repeat them over and over, trying different variations of delivery. Sometimes while the show continues, and sometimes I’ll feel compelled to hit “pause”, do it until I feel satisfied, then resume the show. To be honest, I’m not sure I ever even consciously noticed the behavior until learning about echolalia. Now I know that it’s been there all along, as far back as I can remember.
Autism Language Pop Culture Self Television