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ColHamilton
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16 Mar 2019, 2:33 pm

Hi there,

I hope this post doesn't come across as too confused.

Basically, I have strongly suspected something is different about me since my teens. When I was a preteen, I though – and was regularly told – that I was painfully shy and timid. When I became a teen, there seemed to be an entirely extra dimension. I was also extremely awkward and socially ineffective. In adulthood, where the rules of what you're meant to say, when and how are more complex, I find myself continually making embarrassing social mistakes. When this happens with my boss or a police officer etc. it's potential quite scary.

I also cannot for the life of me establish, let alone maintain, intimate relationships. I came reasonably close lately, but my need for control and space ruined things.

I am not diagnosed, but strongly suspect I have Asperger's. I am considering a private diagnosis (public health waiting times here are in excess if 2 years.) I have my doubts though, because my parents – I suspect – would not be supportive. (Though I am an adult so I don't necessarily need their approval.)

Mostly, I just feel totally lost and alone and confused by everything around me. Though I'm 27, I feel like a teenager in an adult world. I don't mean to sound mopey, but I feel like a defective machine that gets through life by luck and various hacks I've picked up. Genuinely not trying to winge and moan, but I can't think of a better way of describing it.

I am totally not asking for a diagnosis on a web forum btw, but I'd love to know if any of what I said sounds familiar so maybe I'd feel a little less alone!

Thanks for reading. :D



DanielW
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16 Mar 2019, 2:56 pm

Welcome To WP

I hope you can find some good information here, and if it helps, You aren't alone. I was just recently diagnosed as being on the spectrum myself and it has been a lot to deal with.

Therapy can help, and social skills can be improved. Whether you go for an official diagnosis or not, there is help here and out there in general.

If you have questions, ask. You'll get advice, feedback, support.



Last edited by DanielW on 16 Mar 2019, 2:57 pm, edited 1 time in total.

ZackMichel
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16 Mar 2019, 2:57 pm

Hi! I identify with being the quiet one throughout most of my grade school/high school years. I wasn't really shy, per se, but I definitely wasn't interested in the more social aspects of school. I was very concerned with pleasing others around me in order to get them to like me. I think this was a way to avoid or make up for awkward social situations.

Sometimes I would get excited about things, but for the most part I was very reserved.

I also have some difficulty with intimate relationships. I was in a 5-year relationship with a person who I basically stalked in order to let them know I was interested.. Somehow that worked? The relationship wound up being very unhealthy, so I imagine that wasn't the best way to go about things. Lately I'm feeling more like I won't be able to find a person and I'm kind of ok with it.

I'm sorry to hear that you feel lost. I hope my little story helped you.


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ColHamilton
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16 Mar 2019, 3:42 pm

Thank you for your responses, they both helped and it was nice to write out what's been going through my head and have it read by understanding people.



Prometheus18
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16 Mar 2019, 3:46 pm

Intimate relationships are, on my opinion, worthless. That said, even on the occasions in the past, prior to my realisation of the foregoing, where I attempted to form them, I always failed, so you're most definitely not alone.


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ColHamilton
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16 Mar 2019, 3:54 pm

I can't tell whether my seeming inability to form an intimate relationship bothers me because I'm afraid of being alone or because it's something everyone else does and my not being able to makes me feel even more unusual.



DanielW
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16 Mar 2019, 3:56 pm

ColHamilton wrote:
I can't tell whether my seeming inability to form an intimate relationship bothers me because I'm afraid of being alone or because it's something everyone else does and my not being able to makes me feel even more unusual.


It's probably a bit of both, and its a fairly common issue.



rebeccadanielprophet
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16 Mar 2019, 7:55 pm

im 29 and i feel like i am still 12 or 13


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17 Mar 2019, 1:30 pm

Your story sounds very much like mine. As a child I was always told that I was "shy" and "quiet" and "anxious", and while these things were true, they weren't the whole story. I also felt as if there were some social rulebook that everyone else had read, but I'd never been given a copy of, and made a lot of awkward social mistakes without understanding why.

Do you have any sensory issues with things like noise, light, touch, etc.? Have your interests always been extremely intense and/or seem quite different from everyone else's? How do you feel when your routine gets changed? Do you know how to adapt, or does it bother you a lot?

Personally if you suspect you're autistic, I would encourage pursuing a professional assessment. Having answers for why you're different can make a huge difference to your life. Good luck, and welcome to WP.


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ColHamilton
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17 Mar 2019, 2:37 pm

Hey startrekker, thanks for the reply.

I am not sure if it counts as a sensory issue, but I do have issues with noise. In work, other people's conversations – which are taking place several feet away from me – can distract me. Interests is a tricky one. When I was a kid, all I wanted to do was program computers. When I went to school, this wasn't part for the curriculum so I neglected school work and everything else just to program. As an adult, programming is my job, so it stopped seeming like an "obsession" and more like a career. The only problem it causes me is that I have no other interests of any depth, meaning work people are the only ones I can have an in-depth conversation with (about programming, compilers, data structures etc. ).

Inflexibility is more of a tangible problem. In work, when things deviate from the original plan I get immensely uncomfortable. In the past, I employed strategies that now make me cringe when trying to get us to stay on the original plan. This sounds absurd, and childish, but in the interest of being honest... I tried to emulate Dr House (from the TV show). I used his sarcastic condescending antics (not proud of it one btw) to try to win arguments and keep things on plan. I'd say this aspect of my personality is what has caused me the most grief.

A diagnosis (or, indeed, being told it is not Asperger's) would provide some clarity. The main obstacle is that I would probably need parental cooperation, which I don't think they'd be very forthcoming with, and the financial cost.

Thanks again for replying. As usual, I list my circumstances only in the interest of seeing if they resonate with anybody else.



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17 Mar 2019, 3:10 pm

I would say your story sounds pretty Aspergian to me. I was always lost as a child and teenager, and on into adulthood. Never knew what to say, confused about social issues, didn't understand why everyone else had friends and I didn't. Eventually I got old enough not to care what others think about my life and choices, but you have a lot of life ahead of you.

I can't stand noise at all. I can't stand small talk. I can't stand most of the activities that others enjoy (going to the mall, parties, hanging out, etc.) If they had had a Dr. House when I was a child, I might well have tried to emulate him as well. Other children (and adults) would bully me. Would have been nice to have some House quips to throw back at them. :D :D at least in retrospect.

If it will give you access to services or funding or a better understanding of yourself, a professional diagnosis could be helpful. Get on the wait list for an assessment. Even if it is years, you may still be wanting one by then. :D

Welcome to WP. You are not alone. :D


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ColHamilton
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17 Mar 2019, 3:33 pm

Thanks for sharing, blazingstar. The teasing you mentioned is all too familiar.

I'm considering booking an appointment with my GP, but I imagine it would be a difficult conversation. I had issues with anxiety (like, debilitating anxiety) about three years ago and he didn't take it very seriously at first. It sort of shook my confidence in him a bit when it comes to non physical health matters. I can change GP, but that would be difficult in itself.

If you don't mind my asking, when (assuming you did) did you get your diagnosis and was it worth it?



DanielW
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17 Mar 2019, 3:44 pm

ColHamilton, your GP probably isn't knowledgable enough about anxiety and mental health issues. It might be a better idea to ask your GP for a referral. (if your GP is hesitant, that can be another "red-flag")



PoseyBuster88
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17 Mar 2019, 6:18 pm

Something you could try as well would be finding a psychiatrist who specializes in ASD clients if they would see you for a consultation. He/she could probably tell you if it would be worth your time taking the formal assessment and/or i formally give you their opinion whether you are on the spectrum. I saw on another thread where a young woman had done that, and she seemed to find it helpful to get some clarity that way.


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ColHamilton
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18 Mar 2019, 5:39 am

Thank you all for the replies. A lot of my thoughts on this matter have been internal for so long, it's been nice to discuss it.

I'm going to mull over the diagnosis matter some more. I've never been overly good at asking for help, preferring to struggle on alone, but I think it would perhaps be smarter, in this case, to get some professional help.