I think it is my Trip Switch

Hello my lovely bloggy friends,

This is a bit of a feeler post really…I have a few questions and I was wondering if my lovely bloggy friends can help. So excuse the babble while I try to find the right words.

It’s about shutdowns

I know I have ALWAYS had them, but I never used to understand why.

Now I can see that it’s because I get over stimulated or too stressed and then I retreat.

I don’t try to keep going through them anymore, I go to my quiet place and allow myself to be me. That will mean I will allow myself to be EVERYTHING that is me… stims and all.

This was very hard to accept in myself,

The way this world is, it has no room for someone like this.

Someone once said to me…..

Lisa, I know you have Autistic traits, but you are intelligent enough to not act on them.

At the time I agreed with this person and tried to cover up who I am.

But I realised that I am being cruel to myself by not allowing myself to be me.

I don’t ask my cat to bark, or make my dog climb trees.

Yes….I have learnt to conform and I have learnt to wear the lovely mask of my Mom’s social behaviour.

But…it doesn’t change the fact that I also have the same difficulties as my Dad.

I can only act for so long before the walls come crashing down.

I found this on WRONGPLANET last night

It seems that many AS adults have shutdowns too.

If you ever experience one let’s say at work or at school (with unsuspecting co-workers or colleagues who have no idea how much they are stressing you)…what do you do in those moments?

Do you excuse yourself from the room/meeting?

Do you refuse to talk and answer questions?

Do you feel unable to talk, exhausted, sleepy, wanting the stress to end NOW?

Do you feel like a deer in the headlights?

Do you feel confused, dizzy, insecure, shakey or anything else?

Do you have trouble doing simple things that normally wouldn’t even make you THINK about them?

Do you feel completely weak (mentally and physically)?


***I wonder what the chemistry behind the shutdown is…I mean are levels of some chemicals in the brain changing?

Β ***************************************************************

This explained to me that what I have always experienced is a shutdown and not depression. However I do remember a time when I was suffering with depression. The two are completely different, but from another person’s perspective they may present the same in adults.

We allow our ASD kids to shutdown into daydream

We don’t think too much of it, well I don’t anyway, because I know they need to go to that place for a while. Or escape into their special interests. So why do I keep pushing myself not to, when I know it can help me.

I think some Shutdowns are just like a trip-switch

It stops my system from overloading and brings me through what is over stimulating my wiring.

So why do I run and fear the way I am made to be, the way I am created to be?

It’s because of what others think again…it is always because of what others think.

So my questions to other Aspies are this…

When you have shutdown for a while, do you then have a surge of thinking and energy?

Have you found a way of calming that energy or do you just go with it?

Also…do you allow yourself to be an Aspie, or do you hide it because of others?

How long can you keep that up before you detach yourself or push others away?

Thank you my lovely bloggy friends.

I don’t mind long comments so please leave them, I’m interested in how others work through their shutdowns.

Also if you don’t want to leave it as a comment, there is an email address in my contact page above.

Love and hugs everyone.

Lisa. xx πŸ™‚

10 thoughts on “I think it is my Trip Switch

  1. Yes, yes, yes, yes, yes, yes, yes, and catching it early is the best thing.

    So glad you posted about this – here’s a couple of quick ideas:
    1. In Rachel’s book, she talks about it as burnout – how we push ourselves so hard for so long and eventually can’t handle as much as we used to. I know you don’t read a lot but it is a wonderful book (I wonder if she has thought of having it done on audio?)

    2. I just posted links to a couple of AWA radio shows with Dr. Tony Attwood and he talks in both of them somewhat about social confusion and also about some practical strategies to cope with difficulties in this area – you may find them of interest.

    I think the earlier you recognize it and take steps to deal with it, the less debilitating it will be. The longer you push yourself, the longer the recovery time, I would guess.

    • Hi AM,
      I loved the links you posted, I shared them on my fb and with a few close friends too.
      I need to read Rachels book, I keep meaning too.
      I think if I just take it slow and not try to cram too much in I should be ok.
      Audios and videos are so much easier for me though. I learn most things from YouTube and friends.
      Thanks for your comment and all your help, I’m so grateful.
      Love and hugs to you my friend.
      Lisa. xx πŸ™‚

  2. I’m just coming out of another shut down today. I’ve been experiencing this off and on a lot lately, probably because so many things have been pushing me way beyond anything resembling my comfort zone, which isn’t that large to begin with. My son was having a shut down of his own today after overloading on what were a very productive couple of days for him, and needing to deal with his difficulty on top of everything I was already experiencing was a bit much. I was kind of expecting it, but I still wasn’t really prepared. Thankfully, we’re both doing better now, but I still feel discouraged knowing this isn’t something we’re likely to get past.

    For some reason, I think I feel guilty when I shut down, like I should be able to do better. Mostly it seems to come from who I am and what I feel not being compatible with what’s expected. I need more down time, more time to process things, more stim time, more explanation of things, more help, etc., than what’s considered acceptable. I don’t seem to know what I’m supposed to know or to be able to handle what I’m supposed to be able to handle, and I don’t know how others manage.

    I think I’m usually quite good at hiding my difficulty, because I have internalized from a very young age that even having the difficulty was not considered acceptable and would lead to more judgment from others. I tend to sneak off to have time on my own to deal with things, and when I can’t, I become very anxious and short-tempered.

    Being shut down seems to drain every bit of my energy. It becomes a chore just to wash a dish or walk up the stairs. And when I come out of that, it does feel a bit like a flood of energy, although I tend to be very low energy in comparison with other people, so that flood doesn’t last too long. Sometimes I think of it as riding a wave and try and use that energy to get a lot done, because I know I won’t have it later.

    More and more these days, I am learning to accept who and how I am, and this allows me to do what I need to do to help myself much sooner. I know that even though it wouldn’t make sense to anyone else, I need to do whatever I need to do and indulge whatever obsession I’ve currently got going so that I can feel OK again, and it’s better for everyone around me if I just go ahead and do that. The longer I wait, the worse things get, and I end up behaving in ways I regret and taking much longer to recover.

    I tend to shut down less if I keep spending time focusing on spiritual things, and often that’s what brings me back around if I’m not too far gone. But there are times when I let things go too far, and I have to indulge some other needs before I can approach anything with deeper meaning. I think those are the times when I start to feel guilty. Then I have to practice forgiveness of myself and others in order to start over. I really expected to be much more spiritually evolved by this point in my life. πŸ™‚ Every day just seems to be the same struggle over and over – some feeling more successful than others.

    It’s hard for me to watch my son go through this, because he has much less coping ability. Then again, he also has me, and much of the time I do seem able to help.

    I’m glad you brought this up. This has been on my mind a lot lately, and it’s good to express some of it and to process it a bit more.

    • Hello Diane,
      We seem to be quite a lot alike my friend, I too internalise and drain myself.
      I agree once the pit hits, all energy is completely wiped out.
      Focus on God and the talents He has given us seems to be our way back out.
      I do think we are both a little hard on ourselves too, we can’t be perfect in human standard.
      But…we are perfect to God as His precious children.
      This is something to cling to while in the darkness, He is big enough to lift us out.
      Love, hugs, blessing and peace to you my friend.
      Lisa. xx πŸ™‚

  3. I don’t go through what you are talking about but do things what you are referring to—If I get stressed I do shut down and block people and things out. I start tapping a foot, picking my nails and my stomach is in knots. I usually pay for that later and wind up sick as a dog…I do run through things in my mind a million times over trying to see how I could have done things differently. The main thing that clears my head is to go for a run or jog. I think the exercise wipes my mind clear and forces me to go blank for lack of a better term…

    • Hello lovely Lizbeth,
      It’s interesting what you wrote here. My *AJ also uses exercise to unwind.
      As a little boy he was EXTREMELY hyper and such hard work.
      He seems to have such a discipline with his body.
      His mind is active with special interests but he is able to switch off when at the gym.
      It must also have something to do with chemical releases in the body I think.
      Thanks for your comment, you have taken my mind onto an aspie tangent.
      Love and hugs.
      Lisa. xx πŸ™‚

  4. This is something I am still learning about and you have been my main teacher. I can’t relate to the melt downs in the same way, but as you said depression can have the same results and I do experience those type of melt downs. We are all wired up so differently and find the coping strategies to suite us as individuals. Our Faith is a good coping strategy but when you have a mind that is always on the go, as mine is at times (that’s why I never stop talking, I think), you can feel like you meet yourself coming back sometimes. Love you loads xxxx

    • I love you too…and I’m thankful that I can chat with you about these things and figure out if it’s an Aspie thing or not. You don’t need to say anything my lovely, I know you love and accept me for who i am, and that is so very precious.
      You are such a wonderful friend.
      Smiling at you. xxxx πŸ™‚

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