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How frequently do you have a meltdown or shutdown?
Once a day or more 14%  14%  [ 8 ]
Once a week 23%  23%  [ 13 ]
Once a month 34%  34%  [ 19 ]
Once a year or less 29%  29%  [ 16 ]
Total votes : 56


Joined: 19 Feb 2018
Age: 30
Gender: Female
Posts: 122

02 Mar 2018, 2:23 pm

gamerdad wrote:
Wondering how frequently most people have meltdowns or shutdowns. If you have them relatively frequently, or infrequently, do you think that's impacted more by what your triggers are or by how effective your coping mechanisms are?

For me, I seem to go into shutdown around once/month at this point in my life. It's usually triggered by some sort of intense or emotional discussion or argument, and I usually try to cope by avoiding topics that will lead to intense discussions or argument. I'm at a point though where it's becoming clear that avoidance has its own costs to it, and I'm trying to reevaluate how I cope with those situations and even if the costs of avoidance might sometimes outweigh the risks of going into shutdown.

Edit: I just realized that I phrased the options poorly. If you fall somewhere in between them, just round to the one that feels closest.

I really like what you wrote here. I relate to some and just respect other aspects. Thumbs up gamer dad.


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Joined: 6 May 2017
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Posts: 1,285
Location: England

02 Mar 2018, 5:26 pm

Depends what you count really. I sometimes experience periods of dissociation, this happens when I'm in a situation where there is too much sensory information going on, so to cope my brain tries to numb things down so that it is manageable.

The noise around me lulls into a stream of what I can only describe as flat white noise, and everything starts to feel surreal and dreamlike. If you try to speak to me when I'm experiencing this, then I am unable to reply as although I can hear noise being directed at me, my brain can't seem to process any of what is being said, instead it's almost as if undecipherable vibrations are bouncing off my ears at that moment in time.

My consciousness almost feels like it's drifting in and out of reality, so in order to centre/ ground myself I focus on a mundane detail such as a wall, and I might reach out to touch this wall. Focusing on one detail allows at least one thing there to feel real, and then slowly but surely the rest of it does.

Then, there are the moments where I lose my sense of calm, which I talked about a bit on this thread: viewtopic.php?t=359459&hilit

Up until not too long ago I was under the impression that I only hand-flap in private, but my friend informed me that this was simply not the case. Apparently he has seen me do this quite a few times, it seems to be subconscious since I don't tend to notice.

In fact, I'm surprised no one said anything sooner really. My friend calls these "Aaaaaa! moments". Don't experience these too often, tend to experience the disassociation kind more.

Generally with both though I remove myself from the situation if possible.

Possibly B.A.P.
21 years old.


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Joined: 5 Apr 2016
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Posts: 1,382
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04 Mar 2018, 11:11 am

I don't think I ever had a meltdown or shutdown. I'm not even 100% sure what one actually is.


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Joined: 8 Jun 2017
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04 Mar 2018, 12:09 pm

When I was a kid, I had meltdowns daily. They aren't lucid memories, but I remember a bit of them. As a toddler, it was mostly over food because of ARFID. When I was a little older, I'm not sure what triggered them. I just remember my mom holding me down a lot. I asked her about it once, and she said she was keeping me from hurting myself, which I find odd. I suppose it's possible, though I certainly have no memory of such violent meltdowns. These days, I don't think I have them more often than a few times a year, and they're (almost) always in the privacy of my room. I've handed myself over to routine entirely, and it's helped. Although I'm more anxious as a teenager, I think it's safe to say that my emotions are more stable now.

I have not the kind affections of a pigeon. - Ralph Waldo Emerson


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Joined: 22 Apr 2012
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05 Mar 2018, 5:07 pm

I have them maybe once or twice a month like clockwork. Something big and emotionally exhausting will happen at work, the stress will build for a few days, and one day I'll just explode, slamming my head on walls, screaming, pulling my hair, trying to run away, the whole nine yards. I've had paramedics called to the office when I bit my friend while she tried to restrain me, that was fun. My last major meltdown was just over a week ago. A couple of little old ladies in the vicinity apparently saw my friend trying to restrain me as I kicked and screamed and flailed and generally looked like a wild animal caught in a net.

"Survival is insufficient" - Seven of Nine
Diagnosed with ASD level 1 on the 10th of April, 2014
Rediagnosed with ASD level 2 on the 4th of May, 2019
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Joined: 10 Aug 2015
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Location: Torchwood Three

06 Mar 2018, 2:25 pm

I think I maybe only have them once a month or so now. When I was younger, it would be multiple times a week. I think a lot of it then was due to the stress of being in school and being bullied while I was there. Now that I'm out of school, I only have them when I feel extremely overwhelmed by things with friends or other stress.

"Have you never seen something so mad, so extraordinary... That just for one second, you think that there might be more out there?" -Gwen Cooper, Torchwood

Blue Jay
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Joined: 7 Mar 2018
Gender: Female
Posts: 77
Location: Brasil

25 Mar 2018, 3:35 pm

lately my meltdowns happen once a week thanks to my younger brother who apparently does purposive things just to see me in a catastrophic state, high school happened every day, I cried in complete despair, trembled and bit my lip to the point leaving cuts, if someone approaches with some intention of provocation (as my brother always does) ends up being beaten with punches and even bites


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Joined: 26 Jan 2013
Age: 22
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25 Mar 2018, 7:48 pm

thats a little complicated.

i have always been more of a 'shutdown' person than a 'meltdown' person.

although i do meltdown i more often shutdown. especially when i overstimulate. and its entirely enviromental cause.

so if i stay home all week i am not going to meltdown or shutdown.

i always shutdown everyday after work. regardless on the day if it was good or bad.

meltdowns luckily happen more like every few months. my last meltdown was thursday. it was a level 7 ( 10 being the worst) and it was because of accumulative stress and i got confused in my home. and my cat was scratching something and it REALLy bothers me.

but yeah i shutdown pretty often (depending on if i go out or not.)

Obsessing over Sonic the Hedgehog since 2009
Diagnosed with Aspergers' syndrome in 2012.
Diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder Level 1 severity without intellectual disability and without language impairment in 2015.


Your neurodiverse (Aspie) score: 170 of 200
Your neurotypical (non-autistic) score: 43 of 200
You are very likely neurodiverse (Aspie)


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Joined: 2 Feb 2016
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25 Mar 2018, 9:08 pm

Averaging it out over a year, I'd say about once a month. That's nearly always a shut-down or partial shut-down these days - I usually can't speak or understand other's speech. I will usually flee from the cause, though I'm rarely aware of doing it, and it's anyone's guess where I'll end up; then I'll "go fetal" for an hour or so, and then be unresponsive until I've slept. I will go full screaming melt-down if anyone tries to stop me from getting away though (I always picture this like those fights in cartoons that are just a big blur with arms and legs randomly popping out!)

If it's sensory triggered, it's nearly always due to sound or too much physical contact (lots of loud, overlapping human voices is a particular problem.) More often, though, it's extreme emotion or having too much social information battering my brain that will cause it.

Full on melt-downs are rare for me; I can go for years without one unless someone's daft enough to try and restrain me when I'm trying to get away from something intolerable. Plenty of little foot-stampy, sweary little explosions, though; that can be several times a day if I'm getting frustrated with a task - if I have something in my hands, it is going to get thrown (I spend a lot of time fishing out tools, pens, computer mice etc. from under and behind bits of furniture!)

When I was younger, melt-downs and shut-downs were far more common - several times a week when they peaked during my late teens to early twenties. I don't think my autism has changed; I've just learned how to tell better that something bad is coming, and to avoid situations that are likely triggers - all the things I used to force myself to go through for the sake of keeping up appearances when I was younger (definitely made much worse by heavy drinking back in my student days.)

When you are fighting an invisible monster, first throw a bucket of paint over it.