Sarah Douglas – ‘Autistic Theology of Trauma’

Sarah Douglas – ‘Autistic Theology of Trauma’

Hi, I'm Sarah, a late diagnosed AuADHD AFAB woman who has come back into academia after a few decades break from formal study. I am exploring autistic experiences of spiritual abuse initially as a distance learning MRes and am hoping to develop this further into an autistic theology of trauma in a PhD thesis. Spiritual abuse is a relatively, but much-needed new area of study, but to date there has been no research into autistic experiences of this damaging phenomenon. I want to engage with and shine a light on autistic stories of SA so that pastorally, church communities can become not just informed, but competent in their response to trauma of this nature.


It was a daunting prospect beginning this research in middle age, as well as with my neurodivergences and disabilities, but I quickly felt that I was a welcome part of the CAT research community and that I deserved my place the table. 


My other professional interests include autism/neurodivergent participatory research study consultancy, working alongside survivors of sexual assault for SARSAS, a South West support charity and being a public face for StepChange media outreach. 


I am also delighted to have recently co-authored 'Understanding Autistic Relationships Across the Lifespan; Family, Friends, Lovers and Others' with Dr Felicity Sedgewick, a friend and colleague at Bristol.


Amongst other things, I love singing, karaoke and rock/metal. My neighbours are delighted!