That's a thing I've been saying forfuckingever. And yet people keep insisting on pointedly saying that I and others "have autism", are "individuals who happen to have autism", are "living with autism", or the ever popular "are individuals who just happen to have autism".
Those are a lot of words just to deny a fundamental part of who I am, huh? It's like people think if they wedge enough words between their identifier noun and the word autism, they'll pry the condition off of us.
I know that y'all are taught person first language, and many communities prefer it and I support that. But the purpose of person-first language is to respect the person you are describing. Ask them what they prefer. I, and many MANY other autistic people, prefer to be called autistic, not "living with autism" or "having autism" or "an individual who happens to have an intimate neurological understanding from living with autism" or whatever.
It is profoundly disrespectful to insist upon person first language when the person or people you are describing do not wish to be described this way (Kathie Snow of Disability Is Natural, I am looking at you, among others). Part of respecting my agency is respecting how I wish to identify, even if you don't like it.
Since autism is like an operating system, you cannot separate it from who I am and how I work. Once you install Linux on your Windows machine (unless you are dual booting), it's not a computer that happens to be experiencing Ubuntu (or whatever). It's a Linux computer. It works differently than a Windows computer or a Mac, for example. It's not broken, it's different. As already discussed, you can't just go and change someone's operating system. It doesn't work.
Respect that. I am autistic. It's not a dirty word, I promise.