Real Talk

Sia Reveals Autism Diagnosis: “I Have Become Fully Myself.”

International singer and mom Sia opens up about her being on the autism spectrum.

Sia’s songs, especially Chandelier and Elastic Band, always had a place on the billboard at some point. But, Sia tops the news again when she revealed her diagnosis of Autism. Receiving her diagnosis two years ago, Sia shared on the Rob Has A Podcast with Survivor runner-up Carolyn Wiger that it was “only in the last two years have I become fully, fully myself,” sharing how her opening up has made her appreciate herself more.

You can watch the interview below. The interaction starts at 10:28.

Masking: The truth of those with autism and ADHD putting on a human suit

When those with autism and ADHD live in an environment where they don’t feel safe, they “mask” their traits, especially those commonly associated with autism and ADHD. The act of “masking” is more common in women where the traits of being “chatty”, “loud”, and “emotional” are more associated with gender rather than the developmental disability itself (Zener, 2019; Miller, Rees, & Pearson, 2021).

During the podcast, Sia accurately describes that act [masking] as “putting on a human suit” and praises Carolyn Wigger for being open about her ADHD.

“I love how I’m able to relate to her, especially with the whole recovery brain,” Sia starts, “and also to emotionally regulate (a common problem with those who have autism and ADHD) when really good things start happening. Like it’s totally overwhelming.”

She praised Carolyn, a mother herself, for being her authentic self on the show. “I think you changed a lot of people’s ways of relating in the world and you know, I’m on the spectrum [autism] and I’m in recovery [for addictions to painkillers and alcohol].”

The tears the two moms shared bring awareness to how many seem to forget that there are those who struggle with the demands of society, especially on how to behave.

“As we all are, man,” Carolyn shares amidst the tears. “Like you know what I mean. Like everyone who acts like you don’t struggle, like you’re not real, man, like — it’s just so beautiful to me to meet other people who put out their shit because we don’t have it all figured out!”

Sia reveals she has Autism
Source: Getty Images

The release of knowing how you are

“There’s a release in knowing what neurotypicality you might or might not have,” Sia admits. “Nobody can ever know and love you when you’re filled with secrets and living in shame. And when we finally sit in a room full of strangers and tell them our deepest, darkest, most shameful secrets, and everybody laughs along with us, and we don’t feel like pieces of trash for the first time in our lives.”

Being authentic about their diagnosis allowed them for once not to feel like they were just a bunch of — as Sia says it — “operators” in the world. There was no more human suit to put on.

“I’ve felt like for 45 years, I was like, I’ve got to go put my human suit on. And only in the last two years have I become fully myself,” shares Sia, earning a resounding and heartful yes from Carolyn. “Again, I just wanted to say how inspiring you are.”

In 2019, Sia adopted two boys who were aging out of the foster care system and announced in 2020 that she was a grandmother when one of her boys had twins.

Carolyn Wiger, on the other hand, has a 9-year-old son who she plays Roblox with.


Miller, D., Rees, J., & Pearson, A. (2021). “Masking is life”: Experiences of masking in autistic and nonautistic adults. Autism in Adulthood3(4), 330-338.

Zener, D. (2019). Journey to diagnosis for women with autism. Advances in autism5(1), 2-13.

More about autism?

A Transformation Towards a Neuro-Inclusive World for Autism Acceptance Month 2023
7 Shows to Inspire Parents of Kids with Autism
What Martin Nievera Learned About His Son’s Autism

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