I have written before about how every day at school I was either bored stiff or scared to death. By the time I was a teen the idea of spending another week, in what I considered a hell hole, was SO NOT appealing. In my third year of secondary education (age 13-14) I had started to have suicidal thoughts. This was when I started to retreat constantly to my bedroom, also truanting whenever I could.
I have been pondering on this for the last couple of days.
Dissecting it and putting it where it belongs. In my past!
WAY IN MY PAST!!!
Also I was thinking on how, at around 8-10 years of age, I started to listen and believe the cruel jokes and taunts that children of this age use. As an undiagnosed Aspie with dyslexia the jokes were on me and they came thick and fast.
I became very quiet almost over night
At secondary school to survive I became the lookout for the groups of girls that “accepted” me. The friends I had once had in primary school were all in higher groups. My dyslexia held me back with everything, so the only kids I got to mix with were those in bottom group. Quite a few of them took on the hard knock approach, as they too were trying to survive.
Most of the jokes were played by my “so called” friends
I didn’t understand that they were just joking and I took it to heart. My bedroom became my sanctuary and I very rarely went out. I developed an attitude of acting like I didn’t care, I imitated those I hung around with at school. This then made me feel rejected in my own family because I became a nuisance. I was always arguing and made it very stressful for my Mom. I was behaving towards my Dad the way those at school were behaving towards me, both students and teachers.
What I have realised today…
By the time I had reached secondary school I had learned to cope with most of my sensory difficulties, they hadn’t gone but I was able to act well and avoid. I was able to do most things and had learned, to a degree, how to fit and not be noticed. I didn’t understand a lot of the social conversation between my peers, but I was able to fake it and giggle when they did.
I knew deep down that these kids were not really true friends and I was never able to be myself. On the rare occasion when I let little Lisa out a few of my friends liked who I was, but there was always someone to knock me back down, put me back in my place.
(PTSD) Post Traumatic Stress Disorder is mostly given as a diagnoses for people who have been in accidents, disasters, abuse, violence…etc.
There are a lot of sites that describe the symptoms of PTSD and I can’t help but notice how alike the symptoms of PTSD are to many ASD traites. One site I read talked about using Cognitive Therapy to disconnect the traumatic event from the emotions and flashbacks.
I did think this could be helpful because anyone who has suffered, or suffers from PTSD can actually, in a way, relate to what it feels like going into shutdown/meltdown. However, I also thought that perhaps for those of us who are high functioning on the spectrum these things cannot be disconnected because we have, in a way, suffered trauma most days of our lives. We have been put into situations we couldn’t understand, where we were terrified sometimes even in pain. Then when showing/reacting to this we were ridiculed, shouted at, sometimes abused, bullied and made to believe we are wrong, misfits, oddbods, freaks and weirdos.
On my post called I have a question…can anyone relate?
I was left a very helpful comment by another Aspie named eaucoin.
This is part of the comment…
You know that aspergers makes reciprocity difficult (both because we have difficulty setting boundaries and because we find it difficult to apply what we learned from one situation to another). What might seem to you (or other people) like failings can be reduced to symptoms that are unavoidable on occasion. You need to apply this to your memories and then comfort yourself for having survived situations that were difficult. I once heard a neurotypical woman describe having lost a dear friend to a misunderstanding at a time when she was going through the New Orleans flooding. She said losing that friend was worse than losing her home. I thought to myself how many times this (losing a friend or a loved one’s favour) has happened to me, and how often amidst my devastation I would tell myself I was being too dramatic, but if they walked in our shoes, even a neurotypical would understand how hard it is not to isolate oneself when the stakes are so high.
I had to look up the word reciprocity
I needed a clear understanding of what this meant to me. I was brought up by a very loving Christian Mother, we were her life and she loved us unconditionally. She loved very deeply from the heart, and everyone who knew her was her friend. I learned to imitate her ways and thought that all people were like her, my Dad confused me because he wasn’t. I knew I was like him and I didn’t want to be. Also I couldn’t understand why, when I was acting like my Mom, people still treated me badly.
While I was shutdown yesterday I prayed
I felt God’s still quiet voice explain to me that the way I talk to myself is NOT His way. It is all the memories of people who didn’t understand me, didn’t accept me. They didn’t care enough to want what was best for me, and didn’t truly love me.
I also felt that the way I should be talking to myself, explaining things to myself. Also how I allow others to treat me is how a loving Mother would.
I felt that God was telling me that I need to learn to Mother myself. I wouldn’t say the things to my kids that I allow my brain to say to me. I also wouldn’t let anyone else say these things to my kids either.
I have had years of NOT KNOWING
Years of not understanding that my brain is wired differently. The one thing I have always held onto is that God loves me and one day I will understand. Now I am older, an adult, my Mom is no longer here to help me to fit, or to help make me feel better.
I have got the love of God though and Jesus as my Saviour.
I KNOW that He will teach me His ways.
Good News Translation (GNT)
13 I will comfort you in Jerusalem, as a mother comforts her child.14 When you see this happen, you will be glad; it will make you strong and healthy. Then you will know that I, the Lord, help those who obey me, and I show my anger against my enemies.