An article I was asked to write last year.

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danum
Raven
Raven

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Joined: 18 Feb 2011
Age: 58
Gender: Male
Posts: 123

05 Jul 2011, 7:41 am

I recently wrote a comment on one of the blog posts on this site and received an email inviting me to make my own contribution to the site....so here goes.

I'm 49 years years old and have only recently received a diagnosis of Asperger's syndrome. I have never had a job or a relationship and feel so lonely and isolated, useless and shunned. I've always known that there was something a bit different about me, but never knew what; that's why I found the whole process of my diagnosis such a positive and uplifting experience. I now know why I am where I am, why I behave as I do and have the attitudes I have; but, most importantly of all, why others behave towards me as they do.

I live in a poor town in northern England, an area with few opportunities now, or when I was growing up. With the help of an advocate provided by social services I've come to terms with the fact that I'll never work – something that I haven't found easy because I know that in terms of my specialist skills and interests I have a lot to offer to an employer, however I'm aware that my presence in the workplace could be very disruptive.

No-one at the jobcentre I attend has even heard of Asperger's syndrome; one person confused it with Alzheimer's and the Disability Employment Advisor mispronounced the term as 'asparagus syndrome.' There is absolutely no support available whatsoever such as job trials or wage subsidies, although I now receive a lot in benefits payments. I don't think they know what to do with me next; when I turn fifty there'll be a whole new raft of programmes I'll become eligible for, but they'll be no use to me because they are tailored towards taking full advantage of a person's experience and professional contacts – neither which I possess.

So that's it; a life wasted, denied the opportunity to participate in, and contribute to society to the best of my ability. Because I'm now classed as disabled I qualify for a free travel pass and regularly use it to go walking in the nearby Peak District. The routine and discipline of planning my walks and writing them up in my blog is the nearest experience I've had to having a job; and I really enjoy it.

The Peak District is a beautiful part of the world: here's the link to my blog – http://peakwalking.blogspot.com



takeapart
Sea Gull
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Joined: 23 Feb 2011
Age: 49
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Location: In my boat on a lake, river & canal.

05 Jul 2011, 12:04 pm

I like the Blog, the detail and pics, I would like to get back to walking, thanks.