I'm not apologizing for my special interests and here's why:
As an someone who's autistic, I have restricted and repetitive interests, or special interests. In my case: dogs. They flood my social media. I love dogs and taking photos with random dogs I meet. Dogs help me feel more comfortable with approaching people, and instantly take my stress away.
I use the time I run into a dog to make social judgments, too. I ask the owners to pet their pup and a photo. If someone says no when I ask to pet their dog (Yes it has happened before), I respect their requests and reasons and move on.
Of course dogs help me a lot, as they do for many others. Fortunately, I've found another purpose that comes with my dog obsession. Some friends have asked me for dog pictures when they're stressed, and others have commented that they love the posts I make on my dog page. Several students and co-workers at my on-campus job love seeing my dog pictures, and some students ask to see more when they see me at work.
My special interest in dogs may seem odd, but I'm not stopping just because you don't like it. Stop forbidding autistic people from talking about their interests. Stop giving weird looks if someone does something that "isn't normal" to you.
I'm not done with the dog pictures. I'm not done advocating for myself or other people. But I'm done apologizing for my special interests.