ASD+Bullying+Child Abuse: which one affects you the worst?

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What do you think causes the most of your social difficulties today, IF you've experienced all?
Child Abuse 25%  25%  [ 4 ]
Bullying 25%  25%  [ 4 ]
ASD 38%  38%  [ 6 ]
Unsure 13%  13%  [ 2 ]
Total votes : 16

HelloWorld314
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19 Mar 2017, 9:08 pm

Hey world,

If you have experienced all of them (child abuse, bullying, diagnosis of ASD), how much do you think each one contributes to your problems today? Does anyone think maybe they don't have ASD and their symptoms are the result of traumas? My psychologist says I have ASD, depression, attachment disorder, and PTSD. However, I sometimes wonder if my social problems are the result of the abuse (physical/emotional/neglect/separation) and bullying (verbal/sexual) I've received instead of ASD, and I wonder if I really have ASD at all. I have been doing research all day since my diagnosis yesterday and I think I don't have many other traits of autism besides social difficulties. Yes, I have problems expressing emotions and appropriately responding to social situations, but they could also be the result of abuse and bullying. I am not obsessive and I don't have meltdowns, but my psychologist told me that she used 3 different tests to see if I have ASD, and I tested positive for all of them. I wonder if there is anyone else who shares the same confusion as I do.


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p.s. English is not my native language, please correct me if I have made any mistakes. I would really appreciate it. Thanks:)


Last edited by HelloWorld314 on 19 Mar 2017, 9:32 pm, edited 3 times in total.

Raleigh
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19 Mar 2017, 9:17 pm

its difficult to tell, isn't it, because they're all mixed up together.
I often wonder too if I'm traumatised more than I'm ASD but I don't know how to work out the answer.


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Jacoby
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19 Mar 2017, 9:29 pm

I think childhood trauma contributes a lot to my issues, I doubt I'd have the amount of issues I have with anxiety & depression now if I grew up in a more nurturing environment. I am sure I'd be better socially if I got the supports I needed instead of being left to withdraw and rot away in my room for too many years. I don't think I'd be not autistic however since the other traits have always been there, it just has made things a lot harder for me.



FandomConnection
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20 Mar 2017, 1:53 am

Jacoby wrote:
I think childhood trauma contributes a lot to my issues, I doubt I'd have the amount of issues I have with anxiety & depression now if I grew up in a more nurturing environment. I am sure I'd be better socially if I got the supports I needed instead of being left to withdraw and rot away in my room for too many years. I don't think I'd be not autistic however since the other traits have always been there, it just has made things a lot harder for me.


I agree with this.

I don't see that bullying can have that much of an impact compared to parental abuse. We learn to expect that not everyone will like us and be kind, but to have one's parents (who are generally expected to love and protect their children) neglect or abuse one leaves one without a foundation from which to confront other problems. One's relationship with one's parents informs so much of one's life.

Sorry, but it makes me angry. I still live with my parent because I have nowhere else I can go (still in high school). I have to apply to universities in other states (when I would prefer to study in my state) just so I can escape from them; I am seeing right now how much of an impact this is going to have on my future (I don't know if I can live in this city, which is where everybody I know is, because my parents are here).

Sorry for the rant. I'm scared.


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HelloWorld314
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20 Mar 2017, 2:30 am

FandomConnection wrote:
I don't see that bullying can have that much of an impact compared to parental abuse. We learn to expect that not everyone will like us and be kind, but to have one's parents (who are generally expected to love and protect their children) neglect or abuse one leaves one without a foundation from which to confront other problems. One's relationship with one's parents informs so much of one's life.

Sorry, but it makes me angry. I still live with my parent because I have nowhere else I can go (still in high school). I have to apply to universities in other states (when I would prefer to study in my state) just so I can escape from them; I am seeing right now how much of an impact this is going to have on my future (I don't know if I can live in this city, which is where everybody I know is, because my parents are here).

Sorry for the rant. I'm scared.


I am sorry that you are still living with your abusive parent, I totally understand how you feel. I apply as far away from my family as possible when choosing universities as well. Regarding bullying, I guess it depends on the type of bullying, some people just get teasings but still have several friends to talk to, while some others get sexually assaulted by students and have literally no friends throughout middle school/high school. So I guess such a generalization is inaccurate, there are people from good families who commit suicides because of bullying after all.

Anyway, I really hope you can get into your dream university and start living the life you want away from your parent. Maybe you should consider seeking therapy as well, my university covers $2000 per year with a licensed psychologist and that along with the fact that my psychologist uses a sliding scale are the reasons why I can afford it.

Best of luck!


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p.s. English is not my native language, please correct me if I have made any mistakes. I would really appreciate it. Thanks:)


ArielsSong
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20 Mar 2017, 2:30 am

I've gone with 'unsure'.

As someone else said, they're all so mixed in together.

The bullying and childhood abuse certainly had a profound impact on me when I was younger. I was an absolute mess during my childhood and teenage years. And the two would have been so linked. I can't define how many of my struggles were from home and how many were from my peers, but I can say that there is no worth feeling than having absolutely nobody and no safe space. To go between home and school, knowing that you're going to be treated so badly in both places, with no escape from it all. I think I felt much less safe and much more trapped at home, because I had nowhere else to live and the only other option (which I took for occasional days and nights) was the street. And because treatment at home was more violent and physical, and I genuinely believed that there was a chance I could be killed. But equally, there's a really devastating message when you're already abused at home that comes from being bullied at school in addition. It really cements in your mind the idea that you're completely unlikable, when school peers back up the treatment that you're receiving from parents.

But today? I'm inclined to think the ASD is the biggest issue in my social interaction. I do have positive interactions with people, now. I have friends. I'm also generally very confident. And the people that do take time to get to know me all say many positive things about me.

I grew up believing that all of my 'flaws' were the result of my traumatic childhood, but now that I understand I'm autistic I know that wasn't necessarily the case. In fact, I believe my autism actually pulled me through the childhood trauma where many people would have crumbled under it, simply because it did give me that natural 'lone wolf' element to my personality and because I coped by being absorbed in my special interests. I wasn't so easily influenced.

Today, I am still bullied. But it's far less frequent. In childhood I believed that there must have been a message everyone had seen, telling them to mistreat me, and I couldn't work out why. Now, I know that's ridiculous. I identify that there are no secret messages, except the ones that I don't realise I am giving to other people. And when I'm bullied or excluded as an adult, it's because people are noticing my autistic behaviours.

I think the issues were all much more linked as a child, but more than a decade on I really believe that I have outgrown most of the negative effects of child abuse. What's left to impact me today is, generally, the autism.



HelloWorld314
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20 Mar 2017, 2:46 am

ArielsSong wrote:

The bullying and childhood abuse certainly had a profound impact on me when I was younger. I was an absolute mess during my childhood and teenage years. And the two would have been so linked. I can't define how many of my struggles were from home and how many were from my peers, but I can say that there is no worth feeling than having absolutely nobody and no safe space. To go between home and school, knowing that you're going to be treated so badly in both places, with no escape from it all. I think I felt much less safe and much more trapped at home, because I had nowhere else to live and the only other option (which I took for occasional days and nights) was the street. And because treatment at home was more violent and physical, and I genuinely believed that there was a chance I could be killed. But equally, there's a really devastating message when you're already abused at home that comes from being bullied at school in addition. It really cements in your mind the idea that you're completely unlikable, when school peers back up the treatment that you're receiving from parents.

I grew up believing that all of my 'flaws' were the result of my traumatic childhood, but now that I understand I'm autistic I know that wasn't necessarily the case. In fact, I believe my autism actually pulled me through the childhood trauma where many people would have crumbled under it, simply because it did give me that natural 'lone wolf' element to my personality and because I coped by being absorbed in my special interests. I wasn't so easily influenced.


^^^ I agree with lots of the above statements, and I also feel that I should thank my special interest/career goal + my logical, stubborn personality regardless it being ASD or not for getting me through that period of time. But still that is hard, I want to congratulate you for turning out to be such a fine human being after going through so much. I hope when I become 29 yr old 10 years later, I can do as well as you are doing currently. I am still struggling socially and morally, and any advice on how to trust people again is welcomed.

I currently find myself constantly lying to friends about my mood and situation, I pretty much pretend to be someone else around friends/assignment-partners. I find it physically stressful to let my guard down and I find it impossible to ask friends for help when I feel severely depressed. In fact my friends are actually not my friends, they are friends of the person I pretend to be and I can't stop myself from the pretension. I don't know if anyone else has this weird condition that my psychologist calls attachment disorder that I am currently having. Advice is welcomed.


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p.s. English is not my native language, please correct me if I have made any mistakes. I would really appreciate it. Thanks:)


ArielsSong
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20 Mar 2017, 3:04 am

HelloWorld314 wrote:
^^^ I agree with lots of the above statements, and I also feel that I should thank my special interest/career goal + my logical, stubborn personality regardless it being ASD or not for getting me through that period of time. But still that is hard, I want to congratulate you for turning out to be such a fine human being after going through so much. I hope when I become 29 yr old 10 years later, I can do as well as you are doing currently. I am still struggling socially and morally, and any advice on how to trust people again is welcomed.

I currently find myself constantly lying to friends about my mood and situation, I pretty much pretend to be someone else around friends/assignment-partners. I find it physically stressful to let my guard down and I find it impossible to ask friends for help when I feel severely depressed. In fact my friends are actually not my friends, they are friends of the person I pretend to be and I can't stop myself from the pretension. I don't know if anyone else has this weird condition that my psychologist calls attachment disorder that I am currently having. Advice is welcomed.


I'm sorry to hear that you're still struggling. I only wish I had some advice to hand down, but honestly I credit much of my recovery to the man that is now my husband.

Even at university I was suffering the ill effects of abuse, and low confidence. I was terrified of people. And as a result, I was the target of bullies at university as well. I locked myself in my room for most of my time, but had met one person that took time to be with me, and he was my only escape - the only person in my life that had ever chosen to spend time with me and hadn't actually been mocking me or trying to hurt me.

That was what got me through university, to be honest. I gave up living in student halls in my second year at university, when I still wasn't connecting with anyone. I moved in with him and a friend of his, and spent time with his social circle. It was that way after we graduated and we eventually fell in love and married. He helped me to find my self-confidence again, and honestly it was only after we had our daughter that I made any other friends of my own. She's two now. For her sake, I threw absolutely everything I had at being successful. I started my own business so that I could be with her day-to-day and work from home, instead of putting her into childcare. I took her to every baby/toddler club, group and class going, and forced myself to interact with people, because I knew that her early social development depended entirely on mine. And I had issues, definitely. Twice, I found groups of 'friends' and felt like things were working out alright, only to have them suddenly ditch me and my daughter or very publicly exclude me as soon as I was starting to feel like people were actually giving me a chance. But, two years on, I have 8 friends that are genuine and real, and that (like my husband showed me was possible) like me for who I am. And my daughter, of course, gives me the ongoing confidence to go to new places and do new things for her sake.

I am just fortunate that I met my husband. I think it takes that one thing to click into place, but it certainly isn't anything that I can credit myself for. It was pure luck. The only part I played, and admittedly one that is necessary, is to get out there and keep trying continuously. I could have hidden away forever, and I'd certainly have dealt with a lot less pain as a result by avoiding all of the failed social interactions, but then I wouldn't have met him.

I've now got very high self-esteem and I am so, so happy with my life. It's exactly what I want (aside from having less money than I'd aim for, but that's a minor issue!). I really hope that you do find the same of your life in the next decade. But don't feel that hope is lost right now. At your age, I was still an absolute wreck.



HelloWorld314
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20 Mar 2017, 3:31 am

ArielsSong wrote:
get out there and keep trying continuously. I could have hidden away forever, and I'd certainly have dealt with a lot less pain as a result by avoiding all of the failed social interactions, but then I wouldn't have met him.

I've now got very high self-esteem and I am so, so happy with my life. It's exactly what I want (aside from having less money than I'd aim for, but that's a minor issue!). I really hope that you do find the same of your life in the next decade. But don't feel that hope is lost right now. At your age, I was still an absolute wreck.


Thanks for sharing, I wish I can somehow find the same courage within myself. All the best to you and your family!


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p.s. English is not my native language, please correct me if I have made any mistakes. I would really appreciate it. Thanks:)


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20 Mar 2017, 4:23 am

HelloWorld314 wrote:
FandomConnection wrote:
I don't see that bullying can have that much of an impact compared to parental abuse. We learn to expect that not everyone will like us and be kind, but to have one's parents (who are generally expected to love and protect their children) neglect or abuse one leaves one without a foundation from which to confront other problems. One's relationship with one's parents informs so much of one's life.

Sorry, but it makes me angry. I still live with my parent because I have nowhere else I can go (still in high school). I have to apply to universities in other states (when I would prefer to study in my state) just so I can escape from them; I am seeing right now how much of an impact this is going to have on my future (I don't know if I can live in this city, which is where everybody I know is, because my parents are here).

Sorry for the rant. I'm scared.


I am sorry that you are still living with your abusive parent, I totally understand how you feel. I apply as far away from my family as possible when choosing universities as well. Regarding bullying, I guess it depends on the type of bullying, some people just get teasings but still have several friends to talk to, while some others get sexually assaulted by students and have literally no friends throughout middle school/high school. So I guess such a generalization is inaccurate, there are people from good families who commit suicides because of bullying after all.

Anyway, I really hope you can get into your dream university and start living the life you want away from your parent. Maybe you should consider seeking therapy as well, my university covers $2000 per year with a licensed psychologist and that along with the fact that my psychologist uses a sliding scale are the reasons why I can afford it.

Best of luck!


Thank you. By no means do I intimate that bullying is not damaging - of course it is. I merely wanted to express that I think parental abuse is the more damaging to those who experience both, because (as Jacoby wrote) parental abuse robs one of what should be one's most important and constant support network, which makes it so much harder to deal with everything else.

I should emphasise that I intend this to be seen only as my opinion - I do not profess to have the ultimate answer to this question.


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Undiagnosed, though personally suspected ASD since 11 years old; parents firmly in denial
Your neurodiverse (Aspie) score: 129 of 200
Your neurotypical (non-autistic) score: 54 of 200
I find it easiest to connect with people through the medium of fandoms, and enjoy the feeling of solidarity.
Too often, people say things they don't mean, and mean things they don't say.


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20 Mar 2017, 6:15 am

I wasn't abused as a child, but I got picked on by kids I didn't know, and rejected by classmates (at high school). And when I was little I got awfully confronted by one of my teachers because of my inattentive behaviour.

So now I have fear of rejection, and fear of being judged by strangers, and fear of confrontation.


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AnonymousAnonymous
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20 Mar 2017, 8:13 pm

I was bullied a lot during my grade school and middle school years. Not only was I the "weird kid", I was also the "fat kid." The bullying grew worse after the passing of my father, who passed the day after I turned 12. Whenever I was bullied in the aftermath of his passing, I was sometimes sent to the principal's office because I had no idea how to fight back. In fact, one of my teachers believed I lied about his passing in order to get attention for myself. My teacher then saw me as a much easier target for bullies. I often wonder to this day if my teacher encouraged bullies to target students who they saw as prey.

In turn, I felt compelled to keep my father's passing a secret until my senior year of high school.


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