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zkydz
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19 Apr 2016, 10:57 pm

Oh, holy crap LOL....I've been home since 10PM and I have just stopped replying to posts. It was interesting to see a room full of Aspies together all at one time. All the different levels of disability, all the levels of similarities too. The tangents, the tendency to not stop talking, the tendency to offer opinions. It was humourous, it was revealing, it was interesting, and it was something I will do again. The Dr. who evaluated me was there and that made me feel much easier.

It was nice to go to a familiar place. I knew where it was and knew my time frames. I apparently arrived at the specified time on the "Aspie memo". Most of arrived at the same time and were all lined up waiting on the elevator. LOL....Maybe we are all secretly synchronized or something LOL

Everybody was nice and all. I hated to do the introduction thing. I know I will get used to it. Took me weeks to get used to it at AA meetings in rehab. And that was going at least 3-5 times a week. LOL I would say, "Hello, I'm zkydz...I had an ok..."
And everybody would interrupt ans ask ask in unison, "And you are a..." LOL....And, true to form, I couldn't answer, I had to start over...every. Damned. TIME! LOL

I get to go to another one next week that's for over 50 people. Now, here's the interesting part. When I first suspected all of this in October and returned to America in November, I joined GRASP and found the over 50 group then. I contacted them with every intention of going, but was overwhelmed and never made it. Then after the holidays it got hectic and I was really stressing out, so anything that was not needed to go out for, like food or work, I did not go out. I'm still basically in 'shut-in' mode. But it felt right to go there tonight. So, I sit down and we're waiting. I'm laughing on the inside while waiting because I do not know why I'm expecting things to start on time LOL. They never do. But, I'm getting antsy anyway. Everybody is very pleasant. Some are quite sociable. I'm all nervous and squirrely. Space is filling up and this guy sits next to me. We go around the room and do the name ting. He gives his name and ding dang it if he ain't the guy I was corresponding to with the over 50 group!! LOL

Tell me the universe doesn't have a sense of humour.

So, now, that one is next week and I already know someone there. And that makes it easier. So, still a bit punchy. Still a bit living with a full time swirly in me wee little noggin.

Worth it. In a way, it was interesting to actually be in a room with people I resonated with.

I will go again and to the other group. The plan is afoot. Things are finally moving forward.


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StarTrekker
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19 Apr 2016, 11:23 pm

That's great Zkydz :) What's the purpose of your group? I'm in a group that teaches social skills, and it is interesting to see everyone's different quirks and levels of functioning.


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mikeman7918
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19 Apr 2016, 11:25 pm

zkydz wrote:
The Dr. who evaluated me

Image

I'm sorry, that was just too good not to post.

Anyway, I'm glad you have found a good support group. I'm thinking of going to a summer camp of sorts for people on the spectrum this summer, which is bound to be an interesting experience.


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zkydz
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19 Apr 2016, 11:34 pm

StarTrekker wrote:
That's great Zkydz :) What's the purpose of your group? I'm in a group that teaches social skills, and it is interesting to see everyone's different quirks and levels of functioning.
Well, it's too early to tell because it's a large group, and we got tangented off a bit sometimes. So we got a bit astray. I think the group is in a fledgling stage. Not new, but still finding its grounding. Or tonight may be natural. I dunno. LOL But it was nice and I feel good about going.

We discussed many things of interest as the tangents progressed. It was interesting. I can't scope out the purpose yet. But it seemed more about the benefits of being diagnosed as well as how it can positively affect your life. Talked a bit about school issues and work issues.

I don't want to get too specific. I want to honor these people's identities. So, too much info and it's not good. So, I'm really trying to not info dump. LOL

I've done enough of that lately. LOL

It was a good thing.


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RAADS-R -- 213.3
FQ -- 18.7
EQ -- 13
Aspie Quiz -- 186 out of 200
AQ: 42
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auntblabby
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20 Apr 2016, 3:09 am

congrats Zkydz :wtg: your meetups are a lot larger than mine.



zkydz
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20 Apr 2016, 6:07 am

auntblabby wrote:
congrats Zkydz :wtg: your meetups are a lot larger than mine.
Now, now...we shall see....this was the first one and you know how those things can vary. Also, it is NYC....So, population density? But it was nice.

I mets muh peeps mannn.......


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kraftiekortie
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20 Apr 2016, 7:33 am

Did you actually live in China?

50 people, to me, in a group, would be excessive.

I'm glad you're feeling pretty free.



Dulin
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20 Apr 2016, 7:42 am

I am going to my first support group in a few hours! I will be arriving an hour late because I am working, so that is a little unpleasant!



kraftiekortie
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20 Apr 2016, 7:48 am

I believe the very fact that you're working is quite excellent.



zkydz
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20 Apr 2016, 9:07 am

I did not live in China. I just visited for three weeks in October...felt like forever. I was basically in that tiny room for those three weeks. I only ventured out when I had to. The group wasn't that large. It was just large enough that it was not going to put any spotlight on me. I was grateful for that. You know, you show up, there's only three people and soon someone turns the spotlight on you and says, "So, zkydz, tell us your story...". Once the room started to get above those numbers, it was a bit relieving.

@Dulin...Good luck!!


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Diagnosed April 14, 2016
ASD Level 1 without intellectual impairments.

RAADS-R -- 213.3
FQ -- 18.7
EQ -- 13
Aspie Quiz -- 186 out of 200
AQ: 42
AQ-10: 8.8


kraftiekortie
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20 Apr 2016, 9:15 am

It's interesting to listen to other people.

But I'm weird---I don't mind talking about myself. I'm just a weird Aspie LOL

It's like when you're on jury duty, and you're just sitting there listen to the attorneys debrief the other juror-candidates. I absolutely jump in my seat.



ArielsSong
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20 Apr 2016, 9:18 am

Hi,

Interesting to read this, thanks for sharing!

I'm wondering, as I know this is new to you too (and so pleased that you seem to be finding everything out about yourself and that it seems to be going well)...is it comfortable for you to interact with other people on the spectrum?

I tend not to talk about a special interest of any kind, but I am ego-centric in my talking and like to discuss my opinions and also to talk about my family.

As I go through the process I'm thinking about other autistic people and interactions with them, which might happen in my future, and my thought is this:

If I do have autism, it's not 'immediately obvious'. I don't think I go into great detail about any particularly detailed topic. However, I am uncomfortable in conversations where other people do keep talking for a while about something that just doesn't interest me - as I expect a lot of people are. If the conversation starts to die down once, and then the other person picks it up again and carries it on, I find that difficult and awkward. This, honestly, is how I imagine communication specifically between autistic people to be. I'd imagine that if I were talking to someone with autism, I'd actually just find myself standing around a bit, feeling uncomfortable whilst they talked to me about something that they found interesting. Particularly if they had quite an 'immature' way of speaking, I think I'd struggle. I appreciate that all people with autism have their similarities, but with such a broad spectrum I'm actually picturing an uncomfortable gathering of people with nothing in common except for their diagnosis. Like the business networking events that I've been to in the past...but even worse because everyone in the room is socially awkward and nobody else can quite carry it on for you or distract people from you.



zkydz
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20 Apr 2016, 10:10 am

Ahma gon hitchoo an' kraftie both in one answer....

@Kraftie: I'm at that point right now, I'm not comfortable, but always been the wallflower anyway. I have to ease into things.

@ArielsSong: I am sharing precisely because I remember when I got here, just vacuuming anything up that seemed to fit, or resonate with me. It was instructional and helpful.I am just trying to give back to the community an experience, but not a guide. I just hope it helps someone else.
1.) It's just weird for me to be around anybody right now, so that colors anything. Can't really say if it's comfort or not for any reason at this time. But, I was at ease after a short bit. The people there did help that.

2.) I am so uncanny valley it's not funny. I did see two people such as myself there. It was comforting. I am so tired of people telling me, "But that's a great accomplishment." It feels like pandering or something. As if they think I am not aware of my accomplishments. What they don't realize is that I know my accomplishments. And as great as they were, the failures were even more spectacular. Let's put it this way: I know that I am blackballed in one of the most well known and largest corps. in the world. So, great successes....even more spectacular failures. All because of this root cause.

Just the eval and what they noticed was illuminating. They say: "we noticed x,y and z" and your mind flashes to something a boss told you 30 years ago, and it suddenly makes sense.....How's THAT for a delayed response.

3.) I'm in info dump mode right now and I desperately wanted avoid that.

The one thing I noticed is that we (in the room) are aware of our tendencies and were working hard to curb them. It is instructional.

I have to try to be aware here of divulging too much as I do not wish to give out too much info.

But it was rewarding. I'm still picking out things as I loop through the experience.

I know you are doing the right thing to look into this. I wish you luck. The board here is great for all sorts of things. Even reality checks which have been amongst my most treasured experiences here.


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Diagnosed April 14, 2016
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RAADS-R -- 213.3
FQ -- 18.7
EQ -- 13
Aspie Quiz -- 186 out of 200
AQ: 42
AQ-10: 8.8


Dulin
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20 Apr 2016, 1:10 pm

The group I met tonight was tiny - 7 people, including me. It was a bit overwhelming to be honest - I knew it was going to be like this because I came an hour late, so all of a sudden the focus was on me so that I would feel welcome. Many talked at the same time, asking me a bunch of questions, but they were all so sweet <3 I felt I could be myself and let my awkwardness be there. I didn't need to force myself to sit in a certain way, or nod my head to show I was listening, or force myself to look at people's eyes as long as possible - I could simply relax, and didn't feel too anxious when I realised I wasn't paying attention. I knew I wasn't going to be judged.

It was interesting to see how different everyone actually is, and that actually makes me even more scared to look for a diagnosis - what is asked and studied when you get a diagnosis? What if I don't have aspergers, and am in fact an anxious, socially stupid person with an above average IQ (which I have tested for before). But that makes no sense - there is no way a neurotypical person has my difficulties - at least they don't seem to.

Anyway, this group is by the national Autism and Asperger Association, and they meet up every two weeks. For every week people in the group get to suggest different activities, thus sharing their interests. The association works a lot for the rights of people in the autistic spectrum, so I feel quite excited to learn more and participate in helping this cause. I am quite activist with many, if not all, aspects of my life, let it me gender, sexuality, mental health.



zkydz
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20 Apr 2016, 1:22 pm

Dulin wrote:
The group I met tonight was tiny - 7 people, including me. It was a bit overwhelming to be honest - I knew it was going to be like this because I came an hour late, so all of a sudden the focus was on me so that I would feel welcome. Many talked at the same time, asking me a bunch of questions, but they were all so sweet <3 I felt I could be myself and let my awkwardness be there. I didn't need to force myself to sit in a certain way, or nod my head to show I was listening, or force myself to look at people's eyes as long as possible - I could simply relax, and didn't feel too anxious when I realised I wasn't paying attention. I knew I wasn't going to be judged.

It was interesting to see how different everyone actually is, and that actually makes me even more scared to look for a diagnosis - what is asked and studied when you get a diagnosis? What if I don't have aspergers, and am in fact an anxious, socially stupid person with an above average IQ (which I have tested for before). But that makes no sense - there is no way a neurotypical person has my difficulties - at least they don't seem to.

Anyway, this group is by the national Autism and Asperger Association, and they meet up every two weeks. For every week people in the group get to suggest different activities, thus sharing their interests. The association works a lot for the rights of people in the autistic spectrum, so I feel quite excited to learn more and participate in helping this cause. I am quite activist with many, if not all, aspects of my life, let it me gender, sexuality, mental health.
I can relate. I was surprised as to the size. But, that's ok. I'm still here LOL

I would like to expand upon something you said about seeing these people and the differences in each of them.

i would echo that on the surface. I saw a bit of me in every one of them. We all had a commonality, but each with exaggerations of different things. There were people who were uncanny valley like me. That was good to see. But, when you see the parts that are exaggerated in each of them, it resonated even more. It's easier to see and recognize, even if I am not at that level. That gave me to perspectives:

1.) If I am not aware of what I am projecting, am I projecting something like they do, even if it's lower level...that just becoming aware thing that has you looking out for everything

2.) I am grateful that I do not have some of the severity others deal with. It's good to have perspective.

3.) Back to the uncanny valley thing. It was reassuring to see other people you would meet, not know, have the same problems I have. It's a bit of validation after a lifetime of "You're too smart to be this stupid" type of thing you hear all your life. And I could feel their frustrations directly.


Oh, and I understand the fear, but I firmly believe that knowledge is power. Take control and be who you truly can be.


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Diagnosed April 14, 2016
ASD Level 1 without intellectual impairments.

RAADS-R -- 213.3
FQ -- 18.7
EQ -- 13
Aspie Quiz -- 186 out of 200
AQ: 42
AQ-10: 8.8