Feeling like I am behind my peers. Why is this ?

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chris1989
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19 Oct 2021, 9:18 am

I don't if its just me or that maybe people with Aspergers and Autism do fall behind their neuro-typical peers. I seem to think that I started things later than other people. For example: I left school at 18 instead of 16 and didn't go straight on to university until 22 when I feel that's the age a student finishes university. I also didn't maintain close friendships from school and uni to hang out with to go out to parties, concerts and places even though getting drunk and partying all the time was not really my thing but it just seemed like that is something you MUST do, otherwise if you don't its like you haven't ''lived''. I went to a club and stayed outside for the rest of the night because of the darkness and flashing lights, and only went to one concert and haven't been to one since because I feel they would be boring, awkward and less fun if you are alone. I also didn't start doing paid work until I was 26 when I seem to think someone of that age should be at the height of their employment. I seem to think I see a lot of those people of that age running their businesses and being at the head of it and it does seem to envy me and yet, I don't feel like I want to start a business. It does make me feel that if I wore a suit and tie it would make me feel like somebody and on the top. Also I didn't drive my own automatic car until I was 28 instead of 17 when at the time I felt less interested in it and the manuel driving I did at 21 was quite stressful always having to change gears whilst driving, being stationary and so on, than an automatic which I didn't discover until I was 24. I feel confident driving now but I'm also feeling like I wish I did it before. I also seem to feel I'm behind my peers because I've noticed many are married and starting families, even someone I knew from school who had Aspergers or Autism now has a child of his own with his girlfriend and yet while this is going, I do remind myself of something I read from a book once that those on the Asperger's spectrum may not get into into relationships until at least their mid 20s unlike their NT peers who start relationships in their late teens or early 20s but it feels like for me I haven't changed, even though I work, I still live with mum and her partner, I am not in a relationship and I do worry I'll just be the same forever. I does seem like maybe I am seeing life as a like an ''arms race''.



Joe90
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19 Oct 2021, 11:10 am

Usually NTs don't meet "the love of their life" until they're in their mid-20s, and these days they don't even seem to stay together. I met my boyfriend at 24 and I'm still with him today, while some NTs my age just can't seem to settle in relationships.

I didn't get my first job until I was 22. Before then I was on job seekers for 5 years and couldn't get a job no matter how hard I tried. I didn't like my first job though (which was just cleaning). I am now in the job I've always wanted, but it's still a cleaning job. I can't really see myself doing anything else other than cleaning the rest of my life. I am thinking of being a teacher's assistant in a classroom of 5-year-olds (no older), as I studied child care in college, but my stupid fears get in the way (I have a fear of stomach bugs and school bells, which are both quite unavoidable in schools).

I never went clubbing or anything when I was young. I had friends, but they weren't the sort to go clubbing. I'd just meet them in the day and done shopping and stuff. But I spent every night indoors and would sometimes even panic if I wasn't in bed by 11pm.

I do sometimes feel like a failure compared to other people. My NT parents were always in menial jobs, so maybe that's down to confidence and personality more than having AS.


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Earthbound_Alien
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20 Oct 2021, 3:18 am

chris1989 wrote:
I don't if its just me or that maybe people with Aspergers and Autism do fall behind their neuro-typical peers. I seem to think that I started things later than other people. For example: I left school at 18 instead of 16 and didn't go straight on to university until 22 when I feel that's the age a student finishes university. I also didn't maintain close friendships from school and uni to hang out with to go out to parties, concerts and places even though getting drunk and partying all the time was not really my thing but it just seemed like that is something you MUST do, otherwise if you don't its like you haven't ''lived''. I went to a club and stayed outside for the rest of the night because of the darkness and flashing lights, and only went to one concert and haven't been to one since because I feel they would be boring, awkward and less fun if you are alone. I also didn't start doing paid work until I was 26 when I seem to think someone of that age should be at the height of their employment. I seem to think I see a lot of those people of that age running their businesses and being at the head of it and it does seem to envy me and yet, I don't feel like I want to start a business. It does make me feel that if I wore a suit and tie it would make me feel like somebody and on the top. Also I didn't drive my own automatic car until I was 28 instead of 17 when at the time I felt less interested in it and the manuel driving I did at 21 was quite stressful always having to change gears whilst driving, being stationary and so on, than an automatic which I didn't discover until I was 24. I feel confident driving now but I'm also feeling like I wish I did it before. I also seem to feel I'm behind my peers because I've noticed many are married and starting families, even someone I knew from school who had Aspergers or Autism now has a child of his own with his girlfriend and yet while this is going, I do remind myself of something I read from a book once that those on the Asperger's spectrum may not get into into relationships until at least their mid 20s unlike their NT peers who start relationships in their late teens or early 20s but it feels like for me I haven't changed, even though I work, I still live with mum and her partner, I am not in a relationship and I do worry I'll just be the same forever. I does seem like maybe I am seeing life as a like an ''arms race''.


i was actually developmentally behind my same age peers in some ways

However I was also in front of them in others.

I am a weird mixture of backwards and forwards at the same time and things dont change

I am ok with it though...once upon a time some individuals found my oddnesses funny...other people i just drive bonkers and some feel the need to bully me.

Or mock me....ie they would get me to do things socially and i thought i was joining in but then they would take the piss out of me for it.

I didnt understand as a teenager and asked my mum...'why are they being nasty to me?'

Im ok with being autistic or weird though...just because this society has a problem with it (or a stick up their bum in regards to it) does not mean I have to.

I dont mind not having friends...but I wont turn a friendship away if it works either...im non plussed.

i would like a companion/boyfriend though...then i will have someone to spoil and peskie with lots of affections.



DuckHairback
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20 Oct 2021, 3:53 am

I feel exactly this, and pretty much always have.

When I was younger I always felt behind my peers, not academically, but socially definitely. I remember feeling like I'd just learned the rules of being a kid when suddenly everyone became teenagers and they all started being too cool to play. And then I just got the rules of being a teenager when everyone started drinking and smoking dope and getting girlfriends - I just was never ready for any of it and wished it would just stop for a while so I could catch up.

I no longer feel socially behind my peers - I just feel outside and ill-equipped, I don't expect to ever catch up now and I try less and less.

But I do feel like I'm very behind in other ways - most 40-somethings I know own their own home, have at least one decent car, take foreign holidays. Many have started their own businesses and seem very comfortable. I still rent a pretty crappy house, buy sub <£1000 cars that I drive until the wheels fall off, have never been able to afford to take my family abroad, haven't had a holiday myself since 2008. I still occasionally completely run out of money at the end of the month and can't afford to buy essentials. My credit rating is appalling and I've never earned enough to save or start a pension fund.

I know this is all middle-class money woes, I have managed to house and feed myself and my family consistently and it hasn't helped that my partner has never been able to work so it's been all me so far. Most of my peers have two adult salaries to work with.

But when I look at my peers I still can't help feeling like I've messed up and it's getting too late to turn things around.

I try to focus on the positive aspects of my life: I have a lot of freedoms my peers don't. I am self-employed so I can work more or less when I like and don't have a boss to please. I get to spend much more time with my child than most fathers do. I don't have to pay for house repairs or stuff like that. I can move quickly if I want or need to.



Rexi
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20 Oct 2021, 7:34 am

chris1989 wrote:
I don't if its just me or that maybe people with Aspergers and Autism do fall behind their neuro-typical peers. I seem to think that I started things later than other people. For example: I left school at 18 instead of 16 and didn't go straight on to university until 22 when I feel that's the age a student finishes university. I also didn't maintain close friendships from school and uni to hang out with to go out to parties, concerts and places even though getting drunk and partying all the time was not really my thing but it just seemed like that is something you MUST do, otherwise if you don't its like you haven't ''lived''. I went to a club and stayed outside for the rest of the night because of the darkness and flashing lights, and only went to one concert and haven't been to one since because I feel they would be boring, awkward and less fun if you are alone. I also didn't start doing paid work until I was 26 when I seem to think someone of that age should be at the height of their employment. I seem to think I see a lot of those people of that age running their businesses and being at the head of it and it does seem to envy me and yet, I don't feel like I want to start a business. It does make me feel that if I wore a suit and tie it would make me feel like somebody and on the top. Also I didn't drive my own automatic car until I was 28 instead of 17 when at the time I felt less interested in it and the manuel driving I did at 21 was quite stressful always having to change gears whilst driving, being stationary and so on, than an automatic which I didn't discover until I was 24. I feel confident driving now but I'm also feeling like I wish I did it before. I also seem to feel I'm behind my peers because I've noticed many are married and starting families, even someone I knew from school who had Aspergers or Autism now has a child of his own with his girlfriend and yet while this is going, I do remind myself of something I read from a book once that those on the Asperger's spectrum may not get into into relationships until at least their mid 20s unlike their NT peers who start relationships in their late teens or early 20s but it feels like for me I haven't changed, even though I work, I still live with mum and her partner, I am not in a relationship and I do worry I'll just be the same forever. I does seem like maybe I am seeing life as a like an ''arms race''.

You are lucky to have a car, toilet and a bathtub. Having to carry stuff to the 4th floor with a broken meniscus is a drag.
I recently got help with my bathroom stuff, and i had to work to find a plumber as theyre very busy and uninterested with appartment work as it doesnt pay off. Taking a bath is so heavenly.
I relate with what you've written, the stuck state is so depressing and the aloneness. Poverty you may think is normal, since youve never had a good thing, but you don't even realize how much it affects you. And people who aren't in your situation rarely are able to understand the lacks and life hardships compared to the luxury of ease.
But everyone, even NTs have their challenges they must face to get there. You need to find that stimulation to do and not avoid. And i trust you when you say it's impossible to do it alone and there are just too many things that need to change and life has passed without you having guidance, support and teaching and being able to move in a more successful direction.
Having a partner makes it harder. There's a lot of work on the self and actively doing things that is necessary. And on multiple days it doesnt help the mood. Plus if you have to live together alone, you take up half of all effort to maintain this building, fees, chores and domestic disputes as well as planning for cooking and other activities that are necessary to humans. While this could help you activate, it could also end up not being the ideal kind of help and preparation for life and weigh on you and the person.


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ripleysue
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19 Nov 2021, 6:54 pm

I am 29 years old and have never had a job for more than a month. I've never learned to drive. I have no interest in romantic relationships and know full well it'd be unethical to bear children, given the genetics I carry.

The fact that you work and drive at all is impressive to me. I've been on social security disability since I was 18 and it's basically been drilled into my head that I am incapable of anything.

I constantly feel behind my peers all the time, not just behind but at zero. I have a leg up on them, I'm sure, in niche things like playing Sims or foreign language skills, but this offers basically no condolence.

If someone has a solution for this problem, I'd also be interested in what that would be.



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21 Nov 2021, 12:03 am

..this is one of the basic results of ASD and is to be expected for pretty much all of us.

I’m way behind my chronological peers in many ways. Career, finances, property ownership, relationship etc. As are most on the spectrum.

It is what it is and will never change. Find a way to accept it and get used to it. Accept you’ll either be late, or never arrive, to many of life’s milestones.

Do things you can, especially if there are things you excel at. Try not to worry too much about the other stuff. Best we can do, really.


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