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spacephrawg
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18 Jul 2010, 12:38 am

I apologize for the length of this post in advance. I did my best to keep it succinct.

My mom, God bless her, sometimes finds herself at the end of her rope when it comes to helping me. I'm nearly 28 and still live at home. Within the past two months she called me a few names, among them, "shiftless." It was the only one I didn't know so I looked it up today finally and found out it meant, among other things, having a general lack of ambition.

That is an interesting one because I have ambition about certain areas of my life but when it comes to moving out, striking out on my own, and similar things, i find myself both utterly confused and without ambition. The confusion is because of my meds for the most part; the side effects list for Effexor includes "confusion" as one of the regular ones IIRC. Note: i can't go off of Effexor or the other ones I am taking because they are the only ones out there that i can still take without ill effect and they do what they are supposed to extremely well. If one of them fails I am seriously up a tree.

Anyhow, I do have ambition about some commercial art-related projects that I'm just begining to learn how to do: my plan is to start a business producing and selling miniatures for war gaming, as well as RC car bodies. Eventually I might also start producing fittings for scale RC boats as well. This is in addition to my fine art sculpture.

The difficulties with ambition come in part from having a lot of difficulty understanding the big picture of certain areas of my life. People can explain it to me till they are blue in the face (when they turn purple, take them to the doctor!) but I can't make sense of it. I understand what I do, that is art, extremely well, and I know how to do things like laundry, extremely basic cooking, washing dishes, and the like, but I spend most of my time too confused to do it.

I don't really know how to describe the confusion but it exacerbates the Aspergers trait of difficulty with shifting attention which i frequently have in spades.

I really don't know how to proceed with a lot of this stuff and my learning curve tends to be rather expensive in terms of money: i have to take college courses more than once to get the full benefit of the content often; I've been in college for about seven years because I've been retaking certain things, not because i got poor grades but because i needed the repetition to be able to take in different aspects of it the second time around. I take things in in waves, and with every wave, the focus is a little different. I may be projecting, but i think that may be why we tend to like repetitive play when we're young, because we're taking the information in a little differently each time.

I don't know how to get myself out of this rut. My girlfriend and my mom (who hate eachother by the way) both attempt to take an active role in my getting on top of basic things like sleep and eating schedule; when one is out of whack, the other becomes so as well, and right now they are seriously out of whack, hence why I am up at 1:30am in my time zone writing this.

I also don't know other people can go to work day after day, regardless of state of mind or level of energy, and do their time functionally and keep on any kind of schedule. Every day is different for me. If I'm messed up emotionally on a given day, I really can't do too much. My meds keep me from being depressed but things can put me in a state of feeling "disturbed", like when you get disturbed by a creepy experience or seeing an animal get run over by a car. Some days I'm just numb and dissociated, and, yes, seriously confused by everything such that all I can do is just look at LOLcats for some hours. Some days I'm just dead tired or I can't remember to eat regularly and get tired because of that. Some days I'm super-sharp and highly functional and don't need a nap at all and I get everything done extremely well and on time.

The inconsistency is maddening to both my mom and my girlfriend. I don't know how to proceed.

One last note: when I was in my freshman year of college, I was on lithium, among other things, and though i had absolutely no short term memory, to the point that I had a lot of difficulty dialing a number on a phone, and had to write down *every* instruction in gross detail, I was extremely sharp and on top of virtually everything. I was never late to my classes, averaged no more than one absence per semester, and I was on the deans list. I was frequently the best in my classes. However, I needed to go off lithium that summer because if i stayed on it, it would've given me nephrogenic diabetes, in other words, diabetes where i can't metabolize salt. Also it was throwing off my water metabolism so i needed to drink up to four gallons a day and i needed to take 100lbs of water with me where ever i went. So they put me on Trileptal which was less effective, and soon, subtle depression crept up on me, though i didn't realize it for four years. It took a serious toll on my creativity and functionality over time and i was never again on the deans list. Now I'm on Lamectal, geodon, and effexor and my mood is a-ok and most of my creativity is back, that is, back to freshman year levels. It isn't as good as it was that year but it's most of the way there. But in my freshman year, i was already thinking of moving out because i had my life together to such a high degree. Now I live in a haze and would flounder on my own.

I am currently getting coached by the LifeMAP program, here in MA, which is a program that teaches people with aspergers skills for surviving independently. I am unable to use much of what I am getting in that, though I am only three meetings into the program. I just veg out. Meanwhile, when it comes to researching things online pertaining to art and my business ideas, that's ok because like so many Aspies, I'm excellent on the computer.

Its a big mess. What do I do?



Chronos
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18 Jul 2010, 2:03 am

Print what you wrote out, put it in an envelope, and give it to your mom.



spacephrawg
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18 Jul 2010, 3:07 am

way ahead of you bro. this is nothing new to her, my lifeMAP coach, or my shrink.



harlequinsenor
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18 Jul 2010, 3:22 am

In my 5 second skim of your manifesto of self-pity I noticed a line where you said you had a girlfriend... I'm sorry, but grow up and quit your bitchin... go on Maury if you really have issues.



Moog
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18 Jul 2010, 4:35 am

I think that's a bit mean. Jeez. I don't have any solutions, spacephrawg, but I'm pretty similar, I sympathize. One thing I'd do is try and get off the drugs. Try meditation.


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marshall
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18 Jul 2010, 1:24 pm

harlequinsenor wrote:
In my 5 second skim of your manifesto of self-pity I noticed a line where you said you had a girlfriend... I'm sorry, but grow up and quit your bitchin... go on Maury if you really have issues.

You're envious because you don't have a girlfriend? You're the one who needs to stop bitching and grow up.

Well, I don't have a real GF either and probably never will if that makes you feel better. :roll:



spacephrawg
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20 Jul 2010, 12:29 pm

harlequinsenor wrote:
In my 5 second skim of your manifesto of self-pity I noticed a line where you said you had a girlfriend... I'm sorry, but grow up and quit your bitchin... go on Maury if you really have issues.


there are two kinds of people who come through lousy experiences: people like yourself who survived and think "I did it and anyone who can't or complains isn't making an effort and sucks", and then there are those who come through with a progressive attitude and want to help others in situations where they themselves have difficulty. The former type are a**holes and the latter are wonderful and rare. The former type make crappy friends, worse lovers, and even worse parents. They are lousy people to ask for help from. They will not give it. My friend Erik's dad is like this. He's fiercely independent and completely callous to Erik's needs. Erik has his own psychological issues. the result of growing up under his father's reign is the has this guilt complex about all of his problems, which are pretty major and beyond his control; things he's had to be institutionalized for on a few occasions. Had his father not been such a callous bastard, Erik would be a more secure and more sane person today.

I bet you'll try to tell me you never asked for help. Alternately, that you came through on your own. That you've never had self-doubt and despair and/or confusion as to how to proceed and get yourself out of a rut. That is a joke. If it is genuinely the case, what the heck are you doing on a forum like this anyway? We come on hear to compare notes and ask for advice and help others. You seem to have some kind of superiority complex re: anyone who feels lost or confused. I hope you never have kids with any kind of needs whatsoever. (the only kids without needs are stillborn.)



spacephrawg
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20 Jul 2010, 12:30 pm

I just want to know how to proceed. I haven't the faintest idea. I live in a mental pea soup. My mom is losing patience and I'm not getting any younger. What is so unacceptable about that pray tell?



CockneyRebel
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20 Jul 2010, 12:36 pm

Chronos wrote:
Print what you wrote out, put it in an envelope, and give it to your mom.


I agree, in that your mum needs to know what's going on in your mind, and how you're feeling.


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boredofnormal
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24 Jul 2010, 7:51 am

wow, im shocked at that comment by harlequinsenor!

spacephrawg has spent a great deal of time and thought to put that online for a lot of people to see, and some donkey has to share his moment of psychologically evolved "wisdom"...

IMHO it seems you are trying to evolve your life into other peoples ideals.... through trying damned hard, you still havent achieved THEIR expectations (unstoppable force meets immovable object!! !)... maybe change your view on it, find a compromise between YOUR idea of "normal", and your uncontrolled physical and mental cans/cants... it sounds like your mum really does not understand you... maybe its time for the "mum, i am who i am because" speech (with booklets/info/google to back yourself up)... the "i am who i am" speech is not relevant to people with no obvious ailments, as they are just being arrogant and/or stubborn.. but a genuine issue that YOU have no control over cannot be solved with a kick up the ass! as they are the dis-ease/conditions you face... and will be part of your life no matter how much people call you names... justified only because in their world people dont behave/think/percieve like that...

i am anti-medications etc.... however, they do have their moment of use.... the confusion you mention, is that "so many ways to do something, where do i start, what would xyz do, what should i do, if i start here, when should i finish, now if i put that there, where will that go, would it be better if that went there instead" kind of thing? or easily put ( :roll: ) so many problems/questions/outcomes for a single action that its becomes to complicated to do? or more of a mind blank? or.......??????

i sort of get that i just mentioned, but not very severe, it is not a major issue for me, but i tend to find (like you mentioned) repeating the same thing over, and doing things the same way, IN the same way helps, or sitting down and writting the actions to take (not sitting down and thinking about multiple concepts, then missing one, then getting lost again) because writting a sequence of steps takes the thought out of it when you finally get around to doing it, it also means if something does crop up that was unexpected, you can change the list to have "watch out for" sections.... but then i suppose doing that would throw you off if something did happen differently... but if its that serious anyway, then it happening 20% of the time is better than 100% of the time...

just to add, im not a professional, or claim that these are the answers, or anything like that... i even hate saying what someone "should" do.... its just an idea as to how i would get around the problems if i had them... and completely understand if you disagree.... but you did ask :lol:



DonDud
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24 Jul 2010, 10:48 am

I don't take any medications, so I can't say for sure I know what it's like from your perspective, but at the very least, your thread title, "difficulty with ambition," rings so true to me.

I always did just fine in school, except with more complex math and science, and in college I did really great, actually. Despite being weird and a social outcast (save for a few friends), school was a good structure for me, apparently. Now that I'm living on my own, I have ambitions... but I find that I almost never act on them. It's bothering me more and more as time moves on. I'm not much younger than you are, and I can't see when I'm going to do anything new. Without school to "force" me to "do" things, I feel lost sometimes. Lately, I've been looking into figuring out what's so different about me because I want to learn about what I can do to make myself not just stay stuck in my current life situation forever.



Assembly
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24 Jul 2010, 11:15 am

I never had goals and ambitions, I just applied for university because I thought it would make those around me happy. Trough highschool and first year of med. school the only reason why I opened my books was because I saw it as an emberassment to receive low grades, and I sure couldn't be lose face to a professor or teacher whom I admired. To carry out difficult (ie. socially demanding) tasks out I rely on obligations and pressure. So I try to put my self in a position where I need to act, make an appointment or involve others. For example I switched university because I need motivation to move out on my own and living near my university sure isn't going to give me that motivation. This way I finished all the required paperwork and found a place to stay. To be honest I didn't read your whole post (but I am going to), so this probably wont help you as you've sure spent time thinking about your problems.



pgd
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24 Jul 2010, 11:19 am

Some neurological challenges can throw a monkey wrench into the general idea of ambition. Ideally, would tend to look at all the meds a person is taking and perhaps slowly consider discontinuing the ones which may not be needed. Ideally, one might wish to be med-free, however, if one benefits from taking a med for epilepsy, for example, being med-free may not be the way to go. When a person has an underlying neurological difficulty paying attention/sustaining attention, it's tough. There are resources which do provide good ideas about life, a life career, realistic goal setting and reaching goals, however some neurological challenges can interfere with what is often a kind of automatic process for most persons. There may be no easy answers for everyone. - http://www.dreambigcollection.com/ - http://www.grove.com/ - http://www.naphill.org/points/scrolls/ - http://www.daytimer.com/birk/ - http://www.plannerpads.com/ - http://www.nightingale.com/ - and so on. Good luck.



Corp900
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24 Jul 2010, 4:07 pm

What are you diagnosed with???

What does Effexor treat??

If the side effect IS CONFUSION, you should really try to get off that med and go for something new, seriously.



Supremelogic1
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25 Jul 2010, 7:48 am

Hello.

I wouldnt say i can completely understand your situation. Then again, few people ever trouly understand another fully, but il try to give some advice.

I have used an antidepressant called Paroxetine for a little over a year now, but i am slowly quiting them. This is mainly possible because ive kinda learned to see my depressive thoughts comming and questioning them with logic. Im not saying that you must quit the meds, atleast not untill you yourself think youre ready to try that. It might help, it might not.

I also find myself having only ambitions relating to interests of mine, while i lack the more "normal" everyday prorities and goals sutch as moving away from home, looking for a jobb and so on.

Conscerning "sleep and eat rutines" id say im in almost the same spot as you so im not sure what to do about it, but youre not alone.

To try and handle your confusion, i sugest geting post-it notes or a pocket recorder, or just papper and pen of some sort that you take with you, and write down what you plan to do day to day, AND are doing/thinking of at the moment. If you go off on a tangent in your thoughts, you can still reconect with where you were at before with your notes. It takes alott of geting used to, finding the paper you preffer and how to write short yet still clear enough that you can remember from it, and to put away outdated notes to prevent reading the wrong one. Once you have this system in hand, it might not stop all confucion, but it will give you atleast some sort of frames on whats going on. Maby your Girlfrend and/or Mom can help you with this a bit (without taking it all over for you thou, it must be your own notes), just be carefull to make sure they dont have diferent notes and end up confusing you even more.

Since you do have an interest that you can try to make a living out of, i sugest you use your computer skills to find where in your area there might be any sutch buissnes and once you feel ready for it, contact them (By Phone is more personal, but an
E-mail might be easier) and say that you are interested in said things and that you would like to come visit and see how it works in a real buissnes. If you can manage this, then you can get a picture of how to make a living using your interest, and if the place you visit likes you, thers even the posibility that they hire you.
BUT as i said, not untill you feel ready enough, and you can show said buissnes your good side.



With hopes for a less confusing future, SupremeLogic1.


PS. i completely agree with every single word in your responce to Harlequinsenor


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