Resources? What to do when you find out at age 30?

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Johnq
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02 Sep 2012, 5:40 pm

Hi, I'm having trouble finding good resources online. I have a lot of bookmarks but it's all disorganized and I don't know where to begin. I'm 30 and just found out. I just found out the reason I've tried to mimic others for so long then in my mid 20's it got too hard to mimic and I shut down.

I don't know who I am. I look in the mirror and I see a stranger, now I'm scared to look in the mirror at all.

Any youtube video's or articles (I hear Temple Grandin has a website but I don't know what it is or what it's about).

1. I want to know who I am and why I am, and what am I supposed to do when I see zero opportunities as I can't be around strangers.
2. I want to read more about my traits to have some feeling that I'm not alone, and to see how people deal with it especially with people who don't realize it until adulthood.

I'm a 13 year old kid in a 30 year old body and I'm scared to death. I bet there are many traits I have that I don't realize were a cause of the Autism. I've just pretended to be someone else for so long I don't know who my real self is as it's been pushed WAY down. And it's like I left off at age 13 when I started to mimic people so how on earth can I gain a good 15 years of maturity and personality. I don't think I have an ego. I have a scared little boy, and I have a 30 year old person who hides who he really is.



glasstoria
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02 Sep 2012, 6:09 pm

Welcome to Wrong Planet! :)

I found out at 30, too, so I went through some of those feelings too. A year later, it is much easier to look at myself and accept that I am still a work in progress, and I have options.

I like books and movies, so I've read several and really like some that were even for young adults like Marcello in the Real World by Fransisco Stork and movies such as the one starring Claire Danes as Temple Grandin. It is a place to start anyway and find out what helps you and what things make sense of your past experiences.


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Johnq
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02 Sep 2012, 6:53 pm

thanks, oh so there are some movies out there that are related to all this? I'm obsessed with movies, I have a hard time focusing on full books, but I'll spend hours and hours researching random things dealing with science, the brain, medicine, chemistry, religion and history.

For me media that I can both see and hear sinks in better. I saw Mercury Rising the other day and even though I don't have classical autism, I could relate in a way with that kid. The same with that TV show with K. Sutherland with the autistic boy.

But I'm somewhere in the middle, lost. It's almost like I'm half normal, half alien. And the thing is I feel like I see things more clearly than others. I guess it's because my obsession with details and things have to be exact. I've had panic attacks from people being 10 minutes late.

I guess browsing this forum will help too. It's good to hear you dealt with it by age 31. I guess I have a good year to understand what traits are from the autism and what traits are just normal traits.

I'm so awkward around people they think I don't like them or probably think I'm crazy. I just don't know what to do, "oh hi, how's the weather", like anyone cares about the weather! Small talk to me seems childish. Then people go to bars to try and find dates and it's like a secret code if a guy buys the girl a drink and she accepts that means they will have sex.

Anyone have a spaceship?

(Oh I found that movie, "Temple Grandin" I can't wait to watch that, thanks :) )

And why do I type so much? People always say reading my posts or emails is like reading a book. Someone told me you can learn how to get the message out in fewer sentences and words, I just don't know how. I type as my brain thinks so it all comes out. I hate it because I know I annoy people.



glasstoria
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02 Sep 2012, 7:12 pm

It's okay, sometimes the best thing is to respond, and then summarize your own response and just send/email the summary. That way you still get your message across and it isn't challenging to the reader to find the essential message. :)

You have plenty of time to unravel the mystery of your self and your life and experiences. It is worth doing :) Have courage, you aren't alone. Ask questions, ask for help, bounce your ideas off someone who is safe to talk to, you will come around to feeling better about your position and your strengths and weaknesses.


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alexi
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02 Sep 2012, 7:34 pm

I was diagnosed at 28, I can understand your position. I found the first year very unsettling as I felt like everything that I knew about myself was gone. I had read that after diagnosis a lot of people feel relieved, I can understand this, but I primarily felt completely lost and alone.

Wrongplanet was by far the best resource that I used in that time. It is a good way to see how other adults deal with the same issues in real life, rather than a static list of traits that are based on a child. I understand that it can get overwhelming the amount of information, but if you stick on Wrongplanet for a bit you will reach a point where most of the information become repetitive and familiar, and by then you will have a very good picture of ASDs. Maybe then you can branch out to search for some of the information you still want and notbe so overwhelmed. Even now, 2years after my diagnosis I feel like I am searching for that information that will tell me who I am and how I work. I'm not sure that feeling will ever go away, but it stopped being overwhelming a long time ago. One of the keys to this was to recognize that despite many of us sharing the same diagnosis, we all have a different set of traits at different intensities. I found I needed to draw a clear line as I worked it out, of what is my ASD, and what is others ASD, so that I did not become overwhelmed by the amount of information.

You are probably right to assume that you have traits that you have not identified yet. Don't be afraid if this though. I found that this was the case for me, but that recognizing my own range of issues has really helped me to work with some of them better rather than to always just feel frustrated and scared by my seemingly unpredictable behavior and emotions. 

It is tough finding good resources for adults, but some I found useful were:

http://snakedance.tumblr.com/post/26926 ... ers-part-1

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xSxgCguPEaM

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uJGfQ-0c ... re=related

and I found this one really useful, but maybe it is a clear female perspective, which you may not relate. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ayt8tLIRF_Q


Some movies are: Adam. The male character in Mozart and the Whale is fairly good.



Johnq
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02 Sep 2012, 8:14 pm

Thanks guys, I really appreciate you taking the time to respond to me. I think I'll be sticking around here.



Johnq
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03 Sep 2012, 12:17 am

Does the desire to die go away?



outofplace
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03 Sep 2012, 1:25 am

Johnq wrote:
Does the desire to die go away?


That's a hard question to answer. It depends a lot on the person in question and their circumstances. I have just figured out at 38 that I likely have Asperger's. After doing enough research and interviewing enough people in my life to pretty much confirm my suspicions I went through a time of depression. However, it is something that ebbs and flows with me. It never completely goes away, but most of the time it is bearable. Then again, depression and anxiety problems have been with me for my whole life, so I have learned to cope with them without the use of drugs, alcohol or medication.

For me, the desire to die usually comes from the profound feeling of loneliness I have. I present to most people as highly intelligent and reasonably normal. Yet, I lack the social skills to meet a girl and get a date. It feels like there is a glass wall between me and anyone I might take a liking to. They talk to me and are friendly but never want anything to do with me. The rejections are not usually mean, but they hurt just the same. Thus, I try very rarely and when I do, the resultant rejection sends me into a deep depression that can take over a year to come out of. For me this is the tragedy of my life. I don't mind not having a huge social circle or being average. I just don't like that no one seems to find me worthy of love.


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SavageMessiah
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03 Sep 2012, 1:57 am

I had no idea there was a "spectrum" of autism until several years ago. Since then it's been eye-opening. After getting past feeling like a fraud upon learning all of this stuff, I realized I was not alone and now that I'm also here, I have a higher level of respect for these people that I haven't been able to give most others.

It looks like you've begun to formulate some goals for yourself, which is great! Just for starters, try and stick to the things that have gotten you through life so far. If you feel like you've been in auto pilot, try to reach down and identify the positives and feed off of them.

If you have "dire insecurities", psych help of some kind probably won't hurt.


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lady_katie
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03 Sep 2012, 7:26 am

Hey there, I just found out too and I'm 28. I've gone through a wide range of emotions since then, but I think I've finally settled into a comfy place of hope. My confusing life finally makes a little bit of sense, and there are actually ways that I can try to solve my problems, where as before, nothing seemed to work. My marriage is improving, I'm no longer feeling badly about myself for having trouble maintaining friendships, and I even found a few local Aspie's who are trying to get a group together. It was completely shocking at first, but now that I've more or less accepted this and began to educate myself and chat with everyone here on Wrong Planet, I'm starting to feel better...finally.