Me and my Dad…Time to be open!

Me and my Dad…Time to be open!

I really want to share this and I’m hoping that how I word things will not upset or offend anyone.

I really need to share this because it has held me back for so long and I want to move forward.

It’s not a big deal really, my Dad never deliberately hurt me in anyway.

In fact he always tried his very best to protect and provide for me.

There are two things in my life that have hurt me so deeply that I struggle everyday to not turn from both and hide back in my bubble. I want to share this one though because last night I felt that God told me it was time to open up about it. I need to understand how this can be used in a positive way.

So I am going to try my best to turn this negative in my life upside down.

Hopefully someone who reads this will be able to use it in some way to help them self or people they love. I know me sharing this will only help bring me healing.

My Dad is the one with the monkey on his shoulder.

The other one is my Uncle What?

Yes I have always called him Uncle WHAT!

Because when I was a child all he ever said to me was “What?”

I don’t know if this was my Uncle What’s lack of understanding.

Or because I spoke echolalia as a child or double-dutch as my Nan called it.

My Dad and his identical twin are both Autistic with a low IQ.

Neither of them will read what I’m writing here because neither of them can read or write.

Nobody reading this post would ever use it against them because they have no and have never had any friends. There are only two other people who will read this post who actually know my Dad and uncle. These people are part responsible with myself for keeping them safe, as they are both vulnerable adults. So I know this post will never hurt either of them in any way.

A low IQ???…..How do they work this out then?

My Dad and my Uncle between them can build, repair or invent anything they put their minds to.

BUT….Neither of them can speak outside of the home environment.

They have both extended their own homes. They have drawn their own plans and built from foundation to roof. They are both carpenters and very skilled at what they can do.

However…they both bend plastic in a factory because they can’t speak and cannot cope with going through an interview for better work. They rely on jobs found for them where they can work together because they cannot cope with being separated.

I remember my Nan telling me that when they were kids they couldn’t share anything. She even had to buy 2 identical comics every week.

They both are collectors and always have been.

My Uncle collects some beautiful things and does some wonderful wood turning and carving. He also paints water colours and is an amazing photographer. He collects thing relating to these interests and his home is so beautiful inside.

My Dad, on the other hand, collects things he sees as useful. Since my Mom died we have not been able to stop this collection. It has got a little out of hand and taken over the house. But he is very attached to his collection….. In case you’re wondering…we need help!!

So…you have a bit of an idea to who they are now, they have had it quite hard and have been at the receiving end of much hurt all of their lives.

Now I’m going to tell you a little bit about me and my Dad.

He was 24 when I was born my Mom was 19. I was an extremely demanding baby that needed feeding small amounts every two hours and I hardly slept. My Dad did lots of my feeds and nappy changes and was a devoted Daddy. I know this is true I have seen the photos. I know he loves me.

BUT….I have never felt loved by my Dad. I hate having to say this and I want so much to feel loved by my Dad but I have so much hurt from the rejection he showed me as a child and teenager. I know he never meant to hurt me, I was just too much like him and he hated himself so he pushed me away.

When I was about 14 I remember I was crying in my room and my Mom came to talk to me because she knew how hurt I got by how my Dad spoke to me. She never knew he was Autistic, me and my sister helped to get a diagnoses for him when he was 64, after my Mom had died.

I remember her saying, “He just can’t say it any better, he doesn’t mean what he says he just doesn’t understand how nasty he sounds sometimes.” This didn’t really help back then I never knew what it was that I kept doing wrong and why he treated me like I was a nuisance.

Not being able to share certain things I think must be an Autistic trait

I know I struggle with sharing certain things too. I grew up knowing never to ask my Dad to share any of his food with me. I learnt never to touch any of his collections. But I think one thing that has probably scarred me quite deeply is he never hugged me. I have spoken to my sister so many times about this, I just don’t seem to be able to get past it. My sister is a lot younger than me and Dad had learnt a lot of parenting by the time she came along. So she had a better experience than I did, but she still gets hurt too.

I had 12 months of counselling after I left the religious sect

The damage that this sect did to me through twisting scripture. Implanted fear in my understanding of God as a Father this ran parallel with how I felt in my relationship with my Dad. I realised that I was constantly trying to please God so he would love me, but I never felt loved by this false doctrine and I had a terrible fear of rejection and condemnation.

I see now just by writing this that this has also runs through other areas of my life.

One thing I love about my blog is I can be me.

I can share whatever I want, those who know me well enough accept me as I am. I have learnt and I am learning so much from just being who God wants me to be.

Like I said I know my Dad loves me, he is just a little different.

He is Autistic and he will probably never be able to give me a hug now I’m an adult. He has meltdowns that are quite bad and I see this now. He has a lot of stims that he covers up really well in public. He desperately wants to be accepted but unlike me and my sister he has not learnt how to and will probably never be able to act in a socially acceptable way.

When I read the blogs that I enjoy reading

A lot of them are written by NT parents sharing about their Aspie/Autie kids. I love reading these blogs. First of all they help me remember who I once was, all the quirky little things I used to do that I was told to stop doing. They give me names of the traits that I have and help me to see what my kids do that is Aspie. I don’t notice these things they are just normal behaviour to me. I thought all kids had trouble sleeping and wet the bed till they were 9. I didn’t realise that it’s an Aspie trait to line things up or obsess about collections until I read about it.

But what these blogs also help me to do is understand the hurt that parents feel about Autism when given as a diagnoses. It’s like a grief process as they learn to accept that the idea they had is going to be different to the reality. I really feel for them and feel I sort of know this feeling. Not with my kids as I understand them and their ways. I can predict most of their meltdowns and shutdowns and I know what they find difficult. I relate in a different way as I grieve for an idea of a Dad I would like to have.

This is what I have to accept too, that the Daddy that I would like to turn to when I miss my Mom so desperately is never going to be able to hug me and talk to me and make me feel better. I am always going to have to watch out for him. I have to accept his rejection and understand it’s because he has something on his mind he needs to do. Never expect him to offer to help me out with all the work I need done around my home, that I know he could do so well. I need to never think he will ever consider takingΒ  my children when he goes on his many holidays and day trips. I need to learn to accept and forget the idea of who I want my Dad to be for me and the Grandad I would love him to be for *AJ and *CAL.

But…I do have a Heavenly Father who will always love me.

I don’t have to be anything but myself with God, he loves me just as I am. He created me this way.

I know God will help me with this, He wouldn’t have helped me write this post otherwise.


20 thoughts on “Me and my Dad…Time to be open!

  1. There are so many things that you have written here that I can relate to, with both of my parents. Not the same as your story but many similar things. The one thing that brought me to tears was your experience with the religious sect, for the past two years that has been what I have been dealing with. I have not received counseling but have been working through it on my own.

    For a period of time I thought I was completely insane because of the teachings that had been so confusing and the leaders who would not allow me to ask questions. During the time of Daniel being evaluated, I was unable to talk to anyone at my church for fear that they would attack me and tell me that I lacked faith or had sinned to cause him to be the way he was. I was told that, I stood up for myself and then was beaten down. So I didn’t say a word. Thankfully my husband realized how damaging it was and said we had to leave that community. I was very confused and didn’t know what to do at the time. We are in a much healthier church now and they are very supportive.

    I had done the same thing with equating my father’s love with God’s love and I am healing from all of this. I am also finding my faith. I am getting to the point where I can read scripture again without it being tainted by the false doctrine. Sorry I didn’t mean to go on about that. I have just been holding all of that in for so long and I didn’t think anyone else had experienced a similar situation.

    Thank you so much for your post!


    • Hello Angel,
      I am so very sorry it has taken me so long to reply to your comment, I am so behind with answering my comments.
      The counselling I had was over a 12 month period and I met with the most wonderful, down to earth Christian Counsellor. The problems I had all seemed related to guilt and fear because of the slant of this doctrine and the way I had been taught to interpret The Bible.
      I feel that this counselling really helped me to de-programme my brain from the way I had been taught. It also helped me to ground myself and be part of humanity again. Seeing God in all people, animals and nature. Seeing our Heavenly Father in the everyday things and hearing him through not just the Bible and leaders and preachers, but through who I am how I am created to be and everything that entails.
      God bless you for your openness, I will pray for you.
      Lisa. xx πŸ™‚

  2. The grief process over my son’s diagnosis took me a long time, and I’m sure things will re-emerge here and there as my son grows up and experiences various challenges or setbacks, but I can definitely say now that it possible to get through it.

    I think it must be especially hard in your situation because our parents help shape our own identity and feelings about ourselves and the world around us.

    How great that through blogging we can share these experiences with others as we go through them. (And I am also a Christian and am glad you are experiencing healing with regard to the bad experiences you had.)

    • Hello Aspiegirl Maybe,
      Thank you for you comment it means a lot. I find blogging to be a wonderful way to release some of the hurt from my past but use it in a positive way. I have never really had a voice before, and I have hidden who I am my whole life. Blogging is helping me so much.
      Love and hugs.
      Lisa. xx πŸ™‚

    • Hello Heather my friend,
      No I can’t remember my Dad ever hugging me. He couldn’t help it, it’s just part of his Autism. I am learning to understand it all now and I believe I can blog about all I have lived, and it will help so many on the Autistic spectrum.
      Thank you for your hugs and friendship.
      Lisa. xx πŸ™‚

  3. As always, thank you for sharing yourself with me…
    I think that there are some pains that run deep within, and we will likely take to the grave. I can only say that for mine [pains], I hope to continue to find a peace that takes the cut out of the feeling.

    Your broken heart about this feels so …understanding, compassionate, yet deeply hurt. I guess my first thought would be that you must be an incredible person to have been trusted with such powerful life experiences. Im not trying to give some “purpose” to it all, just that, …??? I guess you’ll have to figure out what I mean, because I can’t quite figure it out myself. πŸ™‚

    A low IQ is something that it staggering to deal with in our world. My dear, dear DEAR son was tested as having a mentally retarded level in one part of a four part IQ test. I’m still trying to figure out what this means to me, and why it is so hard to deal with in relation to others. Why is it with my daughter, that after explaining she has autism, one of the next set of words out of my mouth include something like “She is very bright though, thank goodness there aren’t any signs of cognitive impairment” blah blah blah. And then it makes me CRY. What significance does that have on a persons life? heart? relationship with creator??? NONE. How vain we can be as humans. When did a persons worth have everything to do with their intelligence??? I dont understand all of this, or even my feelings about it.

    I am glad you wrote about this, thank you for broadening my perspective. And I know that with my own hurts, talking about them loosens the clenching-hold over my heart. May this do the same for you, dear woman!!! xoxo

    A quote that I’ve always loved, and comes to mind often, “Only through a broken heart can God truly enter…”

    • Hello Daleth,
      I am so, so behind with all my reading and answering comments. I promise I will pop by your blog as soon as I can. Thank you for sharing who you are too, I always enjoy reading your posts I just wish I could read faster. Oh well…God made me this way for a reason.
      Love and hugs.
      Lisa. xx πŸ™‚

  4. I love each and everyone of you and it my natural instinct to want to protect you all from any hurt but we have to learn for ourselves and learn coping skills to help us move forward. I always want to hug you xxxx

  5. Hello Lisa, I felt really sad for you as I read this post. There is a lot of loss for you to grieve here. Writing it out is good. I think it helps us to get things down on paper or on the screen. For me, the hurts and secrets go round and round in my mind. But I am not even conscious they are bothering me or holding me back. I just sense that something is gumming up the works. But once they are out I seem to be less bothered by them. They lose their tight hold on me, and I can begin to put them behind me and start to heal.
    It took great courage to bring this great hurt in your life to the light. I trust and know it will lead to more freedom and healing on the other side of the pain. I know you are deeply loved by your Creator Father, and I am so glad you can sense that and take comfort there.
    And I feel so sad for your Dad, too – not being able to receive hugs from you. Very sad how autism can block us from the relationships we so need and want.
    Love and hugs to both of you {{{{hugs}}}}

    • Hello my friend Bruce,
      You are just such a lovely man, I am so glad that we have “met” in bloggyland and are friends. I think we both have felt the pain that an Aspie life can bring, but we can make a difference for future generations by sharing who we are and turning this negativity upside down.
      Love and hugs my friend.
      Lisa. xx πŸ™‚

  6. Aaw, Lisa, I feel for you and for your Dad too. I think you’re right about it being a grieving process. Hopefully in time when you let the hurt go, you’ll be able to see that your Dad did the best that he could do. It is sad for both of you. I hope it helps you to write about it. Hugs.

    • Thank you for your hugs Spectrummy Mummy.
      I have learnt so much over the last 6 months, pudding is so like me as a child that reading about her, along with other fantastic children on the spectrum, has helped me to remember. The poem I wrote Fidgets perspective, do you remember it? here is the link
      Came from reading about Pudding. It helped me so much to connect and pray through, and start learning about my “Shirley” the little me that got lost and was closed down by lack of understanding.
      Thank you for sharing on your blog about your beautiful children.
      Love and hugs.
      Lisa. xx πŸ™‚

  7. Lisa,
    Thank you for sharing your story. My husband’s family does hug, but none of them really like to hug. My husband is a wonderful loving man who will hug, but it does not come as naturally for him as it does for me. I grew up with two very loving parents who had no problem hugging. In fact, in almost every picture with my dad, he is hugging me, so seeing how much trouble my husband has hugging our children is hard for me. Yet, I know he does love them as much as I do.

    Just an aside, most older people have trouble with having someone try to organize their house. I’m sure your dad’s autism makes it harder, but I honestly think most children have trouble with this one. Even my parents didn’t want us throwing any of their things away.

    Thank you for sharing your story. I’m sending you lots of good thoughts and cyber hugs.

    • Thank you Sue,
      It is so nice to have you visit my blog. Thank you also for your lovely comment and the cyber hugs, I so love getting cyber hugs from all around the world.
      I am so sorry I am so late replying to your comment, Christmas really got on top of me…lol
      Love and hugs.
      Lisa. xx πŸ™‚

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