If you are unable to work, is your family understanding?

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tjr1243
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18 Jul 2012, 9:41 pm

If you are unable to work (due to Asperger's or other conditions), is your family understanding? What about friends, do you find them to be generally understanding of your situation?



PixelPony
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18 Jul 2012, 9:43 pm

When I went through about 2.5 years of unemployment after college, it was less understanding and more despairing of me ever leaving. It was an awkward time at best.


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redrobin62
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18 Jul 2012, 11:10 pm

Family members mean well. They want to see you have the typical life - husband or wife, 2.5 kids, a house in the suburbs, financial investments, etc. You know, normal stuff. If you start talking about SSI or SSDI they feel, I don't know, betrayed. My family does, anyway. I know I.m disappointing them by not being normal.



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18 Jul 2012, 11:41 pm

I know my dad would disown me, mom would be disappointed, siblings can care less, but
my friends might just understand.



BlueBean
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18 Jul 2012, 11:48 pm

My parents accept me, though I know they are disappointed.


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questor
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18 Jul 2012, 11:51 pm

I am in my early 50s and had a spotty work history. I didn't hear about Aspergers until a few years ago, and knew right away it sounded like me. All my life, I and my family knew I was different, but my family believed I could be "fixed" if only I tried hard enough to be "normal." Asperger's is a neurological condition present from birth. There is no cure or fix. There are therapies, treatments, and coping methods, but I will always be an Aspie, and never be normal. Unfortunately none of us knew what was wrong with me for most of my life, so my family was always on my case about any part of my life that didn't fit the normal pattern of living. I also happen to have other health issues, some from birth, and some that came later. As I got older my health issues got worse, so now I am no longer able to work, and am on SSI. My family still wants me to become normal, but they are glad at least that I have the benefits coming in to pay my bills. I get enough in benefits to also pay rent on an old, run down trailer I rent from my parents. They give me a price break on it. I just pay the amount of the lot fee and their mortgage and insurance on the place. (it's in a trailer park). I pay for these several rooms (2 bedrooms, 1 bath, eat in kitchen, living room, and laundry alcove) what most people around here would pay for just one room in someone's house, so it's a good deal, and I get to live alone. I am an introverted hermit type of person who really prefers to live alone. I lived with various relatives most of my life and it was horrible. We all drove one another crazy.

Since I never in my life incurred any large debts, I only have basic bills to pay, along with the rent--I don't have any loans to pay off, so I am able to get by okay on my SSI benefits. Every now and then there is a bigger expense that comes up, but I put aside a little bit of the SSI money until there is enough to cover the bigger occasional expenses.

I wish my health were better, so I could work, but even when I was able, I had trouble getting and keeping jobs, due to no real work skills, and to my Aspieness. I didn't fit in well at jobs. I hated most of the jobs I held, but did them as well as I could while I had them, as I needed the money. There were some jobs I didn't mind, though. Nowadays all the employers want you to have a resume, with lots of job skills and a great work history. I never had any fancy jobs, but eventually I had to have a resume anyway, even though I was only applying for basic low end jobs. Unfortunately, my resume, although neatly done, never helped much because of my lack of skills and frequent job changes.

My family used to give me a hard time about my job problems, too. I am intelligent in some ways, but not a capable type of person. Intelligence without ability is not enough. NTs have trouble comprehending the problems we face, and family members tend to get upset because what's a problem for us doesn't look like a problem to them, so we get labelled as lazy or rebellious, or one of any number of other unflattering terms. It is very stressful to be around family members when they don't understand our problems, or even worse don't see that a problem even exists. I am glad that I now live alone. It is much less stressful and more peaceful that way.

If you can manage a working life, great, but don't feel guilty for getting benefits if you need them.



Jasmine90
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19 Jul 2012, 12:02 am

I know my Granddad is secretly disappointed, but I'm not really out to please anyone.
Of course I am disappointed that I can't work well in that sort of environment, so I'm just hoping the right job will come along, and try and do something with my time before then, but there isn't much I can do since the only two jobs I've had I was fired from, not for anything in specific, other than my unusual way of dealing with customers and my occasional need to excuse myself from a hectic situation.

What are we meant to do, though? Just power on through? I think if I did that, nothing good would come of it.



loner1984
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19 Jul 2012, 1:05 am

Whst is 2.5 kids. Don't understand how you can have half a Kid

Also how do you know or find out if someone is disappointed with you. Just ask them?



rebbieh
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19 Jul 2012, 1:08 am

Due to sensory issues, anxiety and what I think is depression I can't even work 15-20 hours a week right now. The fact that I have to work for 4 hours today freaks me out. Anyway, I don't think my parents understand and they keep telling me I have to work more. They mean well, but they don't understand.



animalcrackers
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19 Jul 2012, 2:07 am

Friends? Yes, definitely understanding.

Family? ... I know they try to understand, but I'm not sure they succeed.


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feddup
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19 Jul 2012, 2:16 am

2.5 kids is the average amount..

Intuition or generally knowing how/why people behave, is the best way to validate what people think of you. Social interaction is the foundation, but silence can speak for itself etc.

Topic: No not at all. My problematic placement in life on this earth have nowhere to be understood, but on this forum. Family think of me like a total failure. The one person in family I still have contact with (mom) is trying to help, but as there is no way she can help she have bad conscience. She get this from the helpless feeling I give her when complaining of how horrible life is. Leads to me getting the same, bad conscience for giving her. I am coming to the conclusion I can't have contact with her. For years I have waited for help that never come. Am 30 now and see that life will end like this since help never come. I am very troubled by that fact alone and are becoming influenced with criminal thoughts to truly tell the society what I think of it. Child-care have ruined my life, 10 years later I start realizing it and the fact I have not gotten any help at all, the contrary in fact being treated as a criminal. Society should get what they asked for.
To bad my self control is beyond these pity NT's. As if they would ever understand, so why respect my boundaries...



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19 Jul 2012, 2:26 am

It took a few years for my family to see:

* That I am not lazy
* That I have a lot of difficulty getting things done on a daily basis
* That when dealing with a small number of responsibilities, I exhausted myself trying to keep up

My mother went from thinking that I refused to take care of myself to worrying about what will happen to me in the future after she's dead.



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19 Jul 2012, 2:28 am

Family blame me for all my problems in life and always did. They want nothing to do with me. To them, unless I let them use me and abuse me, I'm useless. Haven't heard from any relatives in decades, ever since I discovered they were using and abusing me and stopped letting them.


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19 Jul 2012, 3:39 am

My family (only my mother and sister - no other members exist), are okay with my unemployment, but I'm not exactly unemployed - just making very little money - just enough for some financial independence. All the money I make is through giving bass and guitar lessons, in addition to my share of the money my 3 bands get from doing gigs. I don't really contribute anything to the household, but they don't mind that I live there, and they know I'm trying at least. My sister is 28, and she lives at home still, even though she's NT. I think it's due to our very strange family and very strange family arrangement. We're more like friends, at least that's how it seems to me. We curse a lot and make crude jokes, we've not eaten at the table together in over 15 years, the list goes on. I much prefer this to family-style relationships.

There is no 'superiority' thing between parent and child. We all live there and we all contribute how we can. My mom and sister contribute monetarily, and I contribute by doing housework (for example, I always do the dishes because if my mom does them, she does them so loud it causes me serious distress from sensory issues - even though I almost vomit (but never do) from the disgustingness of doing them. I'd rather face that then the noise.) Any money I make I keep for myself, and they are fine with that, because I make so little I wouldn't really be able to contribute anyway - I'd need to make about $2000 a month to contribute with seriousness, in the way they do, and I'd be giving up a good chunk of that.



Steven_Tyler77
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19 Jul 2012, 3:55 am

My father is accepting of me right now, as he affords to support the both of us and I'm not placing much of a financial burden on him. He still expects me to get a normal job, but doesn't pressure me into it for now. He's quite a subclinical Aspie himself and always hated having a regular job; he;s now happy with one with highly irregular hours and I think he understands what I feel.

Both he and my grandma are, however, very disappointed with the fact that I'm unable to be a "normal woman" - you know, the kind who is able to do the housework, take care of all the chores and so on. Since I am unable to do things on a daily basis, I almost always fail at it. My grandma is worried that, due to this, I won't be able to get a husband and raise children. I'm not worried because of this, since I will not marry a person who has such expectations from women anyway. My many issues might prevent me from having a partner, but not those...

My aunt is very angry and disappointed with me for not working. She fears I won't be able to deal with life when they'll all be gone. She wanted me to get a part-time job even during in the college.

The worst part of it is they won't believe I have ADHD and I cannot even bring up the Aspie issues with them...


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19 Jul 2012, 9:17 am

They try and insist they're understanding, but not, they're not really.