Living with autism

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Living with autism

Post by Reverant Revan on Mon Nov 30, 2015 2:57 am

I am autistic.
The form I have used to be called Asperger Syndrome, now classified as ASS (yeah that's right) or Autistic Spectrum Syndrome under DSM 5.

I only found out after my business went bust and I ended up in a clinic after my suicide attempts.
I was 31 at the time, I'm 36 now.
So it took that long to figure it out.

When I heard this, and I researched autism, it was like a huge weight was lifted from my shoulders, because I recognized myself in what I was reading.
So many things suddenly made sense to me.

Like why I can't have too many people around me, why I never go out to bars or dance clubs, why I am so turned into myself (the literal meaning of the word autism).
It all made sense.

So, basically, I don't have the same "filter" other people have that allows them to shut out the rest of the world when they are talking to somebody, allowing them to concentrate on the conversation and ignore everything else.

I can't do that.
I can't help but overhear every other conversation in the room.
I can't ignore all the other noises I hear.
I am simply not able to.

This can be very distracting in some situations, or very stressful in others.
For instance: If I am at work and rushing through something that needs to be done quickly and I have a lot of noise around me and sudden or unexpected interruptions (phone rings, somebody walks in, a package arrives, etc), that will drive me insane.

It is very difficult to explain to people who don't know what it's like to have autism.
For instance, a lot of people simply don't understand why I avoid contact with other people.
Or why I don't like parties.

They see those things as enjoyable, where for me they are not.
Going to any event or gathering with a lot of people, noise, flashing lights, distractions, etc is no fun for me.
I don't attend birthdays, nor do I celebrate mine.

People who don't understand that those kind of events are unbearable for me simply see it as "being a-social".
It's not like I don't give out birthday presents, or visit friends and family, I just don't like crowds.

Of course, there are also people that simply don't want to understand.
Or have some stereotypical view of what someone with autism behaves like.
"You don't act like Rain Man".
No, I don't. Because there are many forms of autism. That ain't mine.

Autism is genetic.
I was born this way.
It will never change, no matter what.
There is no cure.

Sure, there are ways to make it easier for yourself, but that only works if you actually know you have autism and have researched it thoroughly, so you learn how to adapt.
Because that is all you can do.
Adapt and learn to live with it.
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Reverant Revan
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