I’m new - and have a strange story of how I got here . . .

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aquafelix
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02 Aug 2019, 5:39 am

Hi all,

I’m new to WP. I’m only recently diagnosed, in my late 40s and I have a strange story of how I got here. If you’re interested, please keep reading.

Most men celebrate their mid life crisis by having an affair or buying a sports car. I kept my wife and my crappy Hyundai and did something different. I had a complete mental breakdown and spent a month in a psychiatric hospital where I got some new drugs and received a shiny new Asperger's diagnosis. Hooray! (sarcasm).

“Autism spectrum disorder” my psychiatrist announced, and then reassured me I was “high functioning”. I laughed. It sounded like a ridiculous statement when I was stuck in the nut house, broken as a person. Is there such a diagnosis as “barley functioning autism”? Because I think that’s more accurate in my case.

At first I didn’t agree with the doctor as I didn’t see myself fitting the stereotypical Sheldon from big bang theory. But, I’ve since learnt that aspies come in many different flavours. My flavor seems to be more common among women and perhaps that’s one reason I was misdiagnosed for decades. My obsessive interest is art and I had done a mostly passable job of masking my social cluelessness by watching and imitating more socially skilled people. But the strain of bending myself to fit in with society eventually broke me and came at a terrible cost to my mental health. I swear I’m never going to put myself through that again.

So, here I am. Thanks for reading. This would seem to be the logical (pun intended) place to connect with other gender confused, barley functioning autistic types. Nice to meet you!



bobaspie2015
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02 Aug 2019, 9:00 am

Hi and welcome to WP aquafelix,
Just by reading your post it is clear that you are very intelligent and I am pleased to meet you. I think you have a book within you just as Liane Holliday Willey the Author of 'Pretending to Be Normal did.'


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SharonB
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02 Aug 2019, 9:50 am

Welcome! I am in my late 40s; work stress, Autism month and my daughter's behavior drove me to realize I am likely HFA. I am a feeling, caring individual. And frequently overwhelmed.

Wishing your journey to recognize your personal strength, find kindness during difficulties and otherwise accept yourself is now well under way.



Raleigh
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02 Aug 2019, 12:44 pm

Not so strange.
Autistic burnout in midlife is quite common.
What state are you from?


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AnonymousAnonymous
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02 Aug 2019, 1:03 pm

Welcome to Wrong Planet! :)


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KT67
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02 Aug 2019, 1:10 pm

Welcome to WP



Mountain Goat
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02 Aug 2019, 1:20 pm

Hi and welcome. I am not really sure what I am, except I think for the last ten years I have been on a state of close to something more serious like a burnout. I am physically finding things tough where everything seems to be an effort where I force my body to do things if my mind does not partly shut down due to the effort. (I think that is what is going on).

Anyway, I just hope you have a speedy but complete recovery.

I believe I've hit mid life crises but no... I didn't buy a Porsche. (If it wasn't for mid life crises would Porsche sell any cars at all?) But to reduce stress in my life I am downsizing as many posessions as I can while keeping my core special interest subjects and associated tools and spares intact.


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BTDT
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02 Aug 2019, 2:17 pm

Welcome!

I've avoided burnout by associating myself with people who aren't normal. :D



Mona Pereth
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02 Aug 2019, 4:24 pm

aquafelix wrote:
I had a complete mental breakdown and spent a month in a psychiatric hospital where I got some new drugs and received a shiny new Asperger's diagnosis. Hooray! (sarcasm).

“Autism spectrum disorder” my psychiatrist announced, and then reassured me I was “high functioning”. I laughed. It sounded like a ridiculous statement when I was stuck in the nut house, broken as a person. Is there such a diagnosis as “barley functioning autism”? Because I think that’s more accurate in my case.

At first I didn’t agree with the doctor as I didn’t see myself fitting the stereotypical Sheldon from big bang theory. But, I’ve since learnt that aspies come in many different flavours. My flavor seems to be more common among women and perhaps that’s one reason I was misdiagnosed for decades. My obsessive interest is art and I had done a mostly passable job of masking my social cluelessness by watching and imitating more socially skilled people. But the strain of bending myself to fit in with society eventually broke me and came at a terrible cost to my mental health. I swear I’m never going to put myself through that again.

Glad to hear that you had an ASD-aware psychiatrist! Too many mental health practitioners know very little about ASD. For whatever reason, it seems to be taking forever for knowledge about ASD to percolate through the psychiatric and psychotherapeutic establishments.


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- Finally diagnosed with ASD in May 2019, after having suspected it for over ten years, and after having deeply explored the autism community for over one year while waiting for and obtaining diagnosis.
- In longterm relationship with boyfriend who was diagnosed with Asperger's Syndrome in 2001.
- Long history of participation in various oddball subcultures.
- My "Getting to know each other" thread: Hello from NYC.


Magna
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02 Aug 2019, 4:45 pm

Hello, happy water. Welcome and have fun here.


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AQ-43 (32-50 indicates a strong likelihood of Asperger syndrome or autism).
EQ-14 out of 80
Rdos: Your neurodiverse (Aspie) score: 173 of 200
Your neurotypical (non-autistic) score: 39 of 200
You are very likely neurodiverse (Aspie)


martianprincess
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02 Aug 2019, 8:45 pm

Hello!
I love art too, especially art history.
I've been fairly successful in life using the same strategies, also at a high personal cost.
I didn't get evaluated until recently.
We're glad you're here!


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aquafelix
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03 Aug 2019, 4:13 am

Thanks everyone for the welcome.

I’m a bit overwhelmed (in a good way) with the understanding you’ve all shown. I’m not used to being understood. I think I’ve been hanging out with the wrong people.



Mountain Goat
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03 Aug 2019, 11:49 am

People understand more in here as many of us have had similar experiences in life, or if we have not, we have thought about what others go through...
When you are trying to fathom things out yourself to work out if you have the same or not, you are looking and searching and comparing...
If people have never had issues they are not looking or searching or comparing so the concept of doing a little research is something that ost people have never thought about as they've had no reason to, so their understanding is not there. It is not that they don't want to help. It is more that they don't comprehend or can't put themselves in the other persons shoes. (If that makes sense?)


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I do not know if I have asperges/autism or not. Waiting an assessment.


aquafelix
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03 Aug 2019, 11:49 pm

Thanks Mountain Goat,

That makes a lot of sense. I found your reply very helpful.

I've stopped blaming myself as much now that I have an explanation for many of my quirks and difficulties. But now I find myself feeling a lot of bitterness towards the people who have misunderstood me, judged me or just outright exploited my nature. Is it normal to feel that way following diagnosis? I don't want to feel resentful, it just keeps me upset.

I know there are good people who do want to help, but I too have low expectations of typical people’s curiosity about my experience. I don’t live in an enlightened multicultural city. I live in a regional town full of rednecks with limited tolerance for diversity.

I realise it's far easier for me to bend my mind to understand the NT species (as I have studied them for decades) than it is for typical people to relate to my autistic world. So I feel a responsibility for cross-cultural education, which isn’t fair (I know the world isn't fair).

Maybe I’m letting NTs off the hook, but I recognise most people feel little need to properly understand autism (we are a tiny 1-2% minority). But I need to function in their world and I need some understanding on their part to do that. It makes me tired thinking I have to train people about autism, even though I probably will need to. Is this post getting too bit political and belongs in another area?



Mona Pereth
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03 Aug 2019, 11:53 pm

Is there any chance that you can eventually move to an enlightened multicultural city, where social expectations are generally much less conformist?


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- Finally diagnosed with ASD in May 2019, after having suspected it for over ten years, and after having deeply explored the autism community for over one year while waiting for and obtaining diagnosis.
- In longterm relationship with boyfriend who was diagnosed with Asperger's Syndrome in 2001.
- Long history of participation in various oddball subcultures.
- My "Getting to know each other" thread: Hello from NYC.