Asperger's age 29 - Have I wasted my time and life ?

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chris1989
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28 Oct 2018, 1:05 pm

I seem to feel like I've been wasting my life and that I haven't achieved much to be proud of. I'm 29 and I am always looking to decisions and mistakes I made in the past and always feel like I want to go back and change it when obviously I can't. I feel like I should be at the height of career and I am still working as a sales assistant, I want to write a book but its taken me since 2011 still plan it out and I'm always changing ideas and it can be frustrating. I left school at 18, when I was 19 and 20 I was still at college and left college, I did volunteering at 21 still had no paid job, applied and went to university at 22 and was there for only four months and left due to stress of work there and I never went back and between 22 and 26 I was out of work. I didn't get a paid job until I was 26, I seem to think everyone else maybe left school in their teens and are now in the prime of their life in their 20s now having fulfilled a career, enjoying every day life with family and friends and so on and seem to think that when see 'friends' photos on social media and it makes me feel like a nobody and think they are better than me. I also have few friends I see very often, I don't always go to exciting places and holidays somewhere except only with family occasionally not friends and I would like to go to places but if I went on my initiative I would just be on my own and so for that reason I don't go. I only go out to places like my local towns which gets boring after a while and then end up just staying at home. I like to socialise but I never go to bars and clubs and I love music and never gone to concerts to see bands because as I said I would be on my own. Which would make me feel awkward and weird. I'm still single and tried dating sites but I hardly get any messages from people even when I've messaged them and they only view me and that's it. I seem to think they are not attracted to me and that having Asperger's makes me look unattractive when I do try to look after my hair style and clothing appearance and so on, it shouldn't be about looks. I do feel like I try to want to compare myself to others and trying to live up to their expectations and when you don't conform to that you feel like a nobody. I keep thinking that at 29 I should be someone who is in charge of his own business or something and I still work as a sales assistant and I feel like I should have been doing this job 5 years ago.



green0star
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30 Oct 2018, 7:55 am

Everyone gets stuff at different times, I'm the same age as you and just got my drivers license a week ago.



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30 Oct 2018, 8:32 am

Dating sites don't work for most people these days, so it isn't you.

I didn't get my drivers license until I was 25. I've been working at the same place for decades and I still don't officially manage anyone. At least I have a fancier title and get paid a lot more. :D



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30 Oct 2018, 8:57 am

I was a late starter in a lot of things and I'm not sure I will ever have everything regular people accomplish at age 25. I may never achieve everything it takes to become a fully independent adult. I have a rich social life now, but may never experience dating or marriage. I don't even have any indoor pets now, since all have now passed away. I have just feral cats to take care of. In the first two years after getting my driver's license, I progressed rapidly. That progress has been stalled now. I failed again in my bid for full time employment this year. I am still nowhere near being fully independent, even though a lot of things that seemed impossible years ago are fairly routine now. As for dating, I don't see myself as the type of woman a man would be interested in romantically. I am the type of person people ask for information, not a date. I look a lot younger than my age, which makes people want to treat me like "the little sister" in need of protection.

Don't get me wrong. I love my life now. I always wonder, though, what I might have achieved if I hadn't been "the weird girl" growing up.



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30 Oct 2018, 9:00 am

Maybe it is for the best. There are a lot of single moms who married the wrong guy when they were young. Being a single mom is tough even if you don't have a disability.



kraftiekortie
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30 Oct 2018, 9:00 am

^^Looking younger than your age does have advantages.

I can't see why men wouldn't be interested in you.

If I were you, I wouldn't give up on romance just yet.

There are plenty of smart men out there your age, who have gone through the bullcrap, and now want something different.

I mean that for both of youse :wink:



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30 Oct 2018, 7:20 pm

There are authors that didn't even start writing until they were older than you. So there's time. You can expect to live another 40-50+ years barring accidents or illness. That's a long time.

If you know there are things holding you back or not working do whatever you can do about them, even if it's small. If a career isn't your priority don't force it to be.

You've probably learned a lot about what doesn't work and are wiser for it than some who haven't. There are people your age who still don't reflect on life at all. While you're asking big questions.



haxx
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30 Oct 2018, 7:39 pm

I don't think your story suggests waste. Quite the contrary actually. Thinking about how what you did in the past you'd change today mean development. It feels awful at times, sitting in your chair full of regret, but it symbolise progress as much as waste.

People are different in a lot of ways, including luck which will contribute to where they are when they're 29, 40 or 60.

This is perhaps a relevant quote from esteemed author Ray Bradbury: “Ten years of doing everything wrong suddenly became the right idea, the right scene, the right characters, the right day, the right creative time. I wrote the story sitting outside, with my typewriter, on the lawn. At the end of an hour the story was finished, the hair on the back of my neck was standing up, and I was in tears. I knew I had written the first really good story of my life.”



RubyWings91
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30 Oct 2018, 8:19 pm

You are not alone on the "I feel like I'm getting nowhere" boat. I am 27, have a Bachelor's Degree in Conservation Biology (that I got when I was 24). I am in and out of jobs, only the most recent 6 month position as a Naturalist even remotely related to my career field. With a few exceptions related to on site housing or living with my grandparents for different positions, I have been at home with my parents (and have 2 younger siblings both of whom have basically established themselves so that they won't have to come back). I am currently unemployed and work day in and day out applying to applications and doing interviews that end with people deciding there are better options than me. I am single and am worried I might never build up the courage to get friendly enough to trust someone enough to try dating.

Sometimes it's best to list out what you have accomplished. When I do this I am reminded that that, yes, I have made progress. I have earned a Bachelor's degree. I finally learned to drive a couple years ago and my jobs are slowly taking me toward my field. I had an unpayed internship for 4 months in 2015 working with an endangered species of toad. My first payed position, at the age of 25, was as a produce clerk. Then I was a camp counselor for a couple months. Finally, I've gotten to work in an environmentally focused camp for six months. The progress seems almost glacial to me, but it is there.

Also, an idea for a writing outlet: There are sites on the internet that specifically allow people to post work anonymously for people to look at, like and comment on. Maybe, if you have short warm up works for your writing that you never plan to publish but think they're fun nonetheless, you could make an account and post them. Seeing that people read and react to your work, even if you don't officially get credited for it, can be uplifting. You don't even have to finish what you write, just put out your half completed ideas and see how people like them and maybe come back around to them later. I speak from experience, as I do fanfiction to blow off steam, myself and the likes and comments I get from people who enjoy them really lift my spirits. I know a lot of the people posting work there say they also use it to help them with writers block for their actual works.

I hope that things get better for you.



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31 Oct 2018, 1:45 am

I have a friend with Fragile-X syndrome who is 29 and has never had a permanent paying job, even though she's been trying and trying her hardest to achieve that goal. She also hasn't got a boyfriend and still lives with her parents.

The way I see it, it doesn't matter what job you do. I used to feel depressed when seeing other people my age or even younger having jobs like managing a company or business or other higher-paying jobs like that, but when I think about it, it's not really the end of the world if you don't have a job like that. I have a job which I love, even though it's only part-time, cleaning buses. That's all I do but it pays my bills and I am happy, and that's all that matters to me. A higher-paying job will probably be too stressful for me to handle anyway, and I just try to accept that I'm not the most successful in the business world, but that doesn't mean I'm unsuccessful.
Besides, 29 is still young and there still is plenty of time ahead of you where things could change so you never know what awaits.

Don't beat yourself up about it, otherwise one day you're going to be 60 and you might sit there and think, "I don't know why I was so depressed at 29, I wish I could go back and be happier with what I had". I admit, I sometimes feel the same, I get angry with myself for not achieving certain things and not experiencing certain things. I've never been abroad with a group of friends, I've never been clubbing, I've never been drunk, I've never even had sleepovers when I was a teenager (maybe with cousins but not with friends). I do feel boring at times, especially when I hear my mum talking about her youth and the fun they had. But life sounds like it was easier to move out, find a job and make friends back in the 80s for some reason. Times have changed, even for NTs. A lot of relationships don't last, people move back in with their parents, jobs are harder to come by, and the UK is ran in the wrong way by the wrong people. So blame the crappy economy, not yourself.


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ezbzbfcg2
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31 Oct 2018, 7:52 am

OP: Yes, yes you have.

But it's not your fault, per se. We were never given the chance to not waste our lives. So, technically, you didn't waste it by choice. It's one of the sad realizations of understanding that you're not Neurotypical in a world where most people are.



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31 Oct 2018, 8:52 am

I am another in the league of "never having had a chance" until five years ago. I have come a long way, but still have a long way to go if I ever want to achieve independence. I had goals but, one by one, the school system from elementary to university (with the exception of high school, where I had teachers who encouraged and inspired me), hammered them down. I felt I was left with a worthless paper degree.

As I approach 54, I realize I have done quite a lot in a short time, but certain goals seem far away to me. I don't know if I will ever find romantic love or get married. I am the kind of person people ask for factual information, not a date. I don't want to meet the same lonely fate of dying alone in a hospital that many members of my family have experienced.

I will live my life (a good one) and hold out hope that somehow I can achieve some version of a normal life. I won't be able to accomplish that through the same channels as NTs, however. I hope I can use my interests and talents to someday have a life I won't be ashamed of when I look back in my old age.