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Mountain Goat
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04 May 2021, 8:20 pm

I used to think I was one of a kind and that there was no one like me. I thought that being bullied was a way of life, and I thought I was used to classing myself as a second class person.

It came as a great surprize to find out that elements of my character are autism traits, and I was asking myself "If they are autism traits, then which part of my character is actually me?" and I still can't work this out.

So what actually is my own individual character?

Also, if I am not on the spectrum then what am I, as through out my history others have called me "One of a kind", and "Unique" and "There is no one like you" and things like that. (I once was said to be the afterbirth and they accidently threw the real me out, but this is not possible so I do not accept this. I actually did not know what an afterbirth was when I was told this!).

But is it possible that if I am not on the spectrum, that I am in a catagory of my own? Can one be in ones own unique catagory? Life was deep down lonely until I found out it was possible I might be on the spectrum though, because all of a sudden I found somewhere where I fit, so if I am not actually on the spectrum, then I am lost on my own again and it makes no sense.

Making sense of my life and where I actually fit in is something that I have never been able to do until I discovered what autism is, and it is why jokes like telling me I was an afterbirth (When I found out what it was) hurt because I could never find where I actually fit in, as I was always an odd one out... On the outside looking in.
That describes my life. On the outside looking in!

I need to know where I stand. Waiting to be assessed takes ages!



kitesandtrainsandcats
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04 May 2021, 8:34 pm

Mountain Goat wrote:
I used to think I was one of a kind and that there was no one like me. I thought that being bullied was a way of life, and I thought I was used to classing myself as a second class person.
It came as a great surprize to find out that elements of my character are autism traits, and I was asking myself "If they are autism traits, then which part of my character is actually me?" and I still can't work this out.
So what actually is my own individual character?


I have experienced that line of thought.
And still ask that same question after having been diagnosed over a decade ago.

Let me ask you this,
How much is being neurotypical part of a neurotypical person's personality?

My attitude is that my personality, identity, character, is a larger thing which contains autism within in it.


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Mountain Goat
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04 May 2021, 8:49 pm

I went through a stage of discovery where all the aspects of my unique character I found out were autistic traits, and it left me first in shock, but then I became really puzzled as to who I actually am and what makes me me.



mmboutwest1
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04 May 2021, 9:04 pm

At 55 years old, I have been in therapy for a few years because I can never hold a job long enough to make anything of it. I have had the same job now for a few years, and my therapist has let me know (very gently) that I am Aspergers. At first, I was like , "Ya, I knew that" but then I was like 'wait, I have gone all this time, had all this friggin anxiety, hurt myself every way possible with issues of high pain tolerance, and I am just now finding out I have this beauthiful gift'.
W O W. So now going to go for some testing. Got myself all going forward on this.



Aspie1
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04 May 2021, 9:24 pm

Mountain Goat wrote:
I used to think I was one of a kind and that there was no one like me. I thought that being bullied was a way of life, and I thought I was used to classing myself as a second class person.

It came as a great surprize to find out that elements of my character are autism traits, and I was asking myself "If they are autism traits, then which part of my character is actually me?" and I still can't work this out.
When I was little, I used to think I was "the kindest child to have ever existed in human history". This was a product of two things: (1) Me being extra-kind to animals, people I felt were in need, and objects I perceived as "mistreated"; and (2) Getting exposed to Catholicism.

I felt compelled to nurse every sick animal I came upon back to health. I was willing to give the shirt off my back and the food off my plate to a needy person. (My favorite toys were the exception; I was willing to literally kill anyone who threatened their safety, which I considered to be a part of the "kindness", since no one else was willing to protect my toys as fiercely.) I felt compelled to bring food and water to a stay cat I saw in the street. And I cherished my personal possessions, as well as the family dishes, as if they were all antiques made of gold. I also grieved like I would over a dead person (or at least a dead pet) if one of those dishes broke; again, "part of the kindness", since no one else was kind enough to grieve over it, and just threw the broken pieces in the trash instead. I also learned about the Catholic concept of saints, and that saints were those recognized by the Church as having been good people. Which made me think that once I'm dead, the Catholic Church will beatify me as a saint, since I "knew" that no other child in human history was ever as kind as me. (I was 6 when I viewed myself in the frame of posthumous sainthood; pretty deep for a kid! 8O)

Sure enough, I learned upon joining this site that all those traits were just garden-variety autism. That was both a blessing and a curse. On one hand, I found an instant explanation for all the deep and complex feelings I had as a little kid, that not even many elderly persons have, and that my therapist (during teen years) mocked me for. On the other hand, the same feelings weren't "me" or "my kindness", but rather a mere brain anomaly.



Last edited by Aspie1 on 04 May 2021, 9:28 pm, edited 2 times in total.

Mountain Goat
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04 May 2021, 9:25 pm

mmboutwest1 wrote:
At 55 years old, I have been in therapy for a few years because I can never hold a job long enough to make anything of it. I have had the same job now for a few years, and my therapist has let me know (very gently) that I am Aspergers. At first, I was like , "Ya, I knew that" but then I was like 'wait, I have gone all this time, had all this friggin anxiety, hurt myself every way possible with issues of high pain tolerance, and I am just now finding out I have this beauthiful gift'.
W O W. So now going to go for some testing. Got myself all going forward on this.


Hello. Welcome to Wrong Planet.

It is a strange feeling finding out but not knowing for sure. I may have a while yet to wait to be assessed. I do not know for sure.



Mountain Goat
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04 May 2021, 9:28 pm

Aspie1 wrote:
Mountain Goat wrote:
I used to think I was one of a kind and that there was no one like me. I thought that being bullied was a way of life, and I thought I was used to classing myself as a second class person.

It came as a great surprize to find out that elements of my character are autism traits, and I was asking myself "If they are autism traits, then which part of my character is actually me?" and I still can't work this out.
When I was little, I used to think I was "the kindest child to have ever existed in human history". This was a product of two things: (1) Me being extra-kind to animals, people I felt were in need, and objects I perceived as "mistreated"; and (2) Getting exposed to Catholicism.

I felt compelled to nurse every sick animal I came upon back to health. I was willing to give the shirt off my back and the food off my plate to a needy person. (My favorite toys were the exception; I was willing to literally kill anyone who threatened their safety, which I considered to be a part of the "kindness", since no one else was willing to protect my toys as fiercely.) I felt compelled to bring food and water to a stay cat I saw in the street. And I cherished my personal possessions, as well as the family dishes, as if they were all antiques made of gold. I also grieved like I would over a dead person (or at least a dead pet) if one of those dishes broke; against, "part of the kindness", since no one else was kind enough to grieve over it. I also learned about the Catholic concept of saints, and that saints were those recognized by the Church as having been good people. Which made me think that once I'm dead, the Catholic Church will beatify me as a saint, since I "knew" that no other child in world history was as kind as me. (I was 6 when I viewed myself in the frame of posthumous sainthood; pretty deep for a kid! 8O)

Sure enough, I learned upon joining this site that all those traits were just garden-variety autism. That was both a blessing and a curse. On one hand, I found an instant explanation for all the deep and complex feelings I had as a little kid that not even many elderly persons have. On the other hand, the same feelings weren't "me" or "my kindness", but a mere brain anomaly.


I am told I am extra kind to insects and things like that, and to things. I do not want to hurt things.

If you are following Jesus Christ you are a saint. You do not need a church to tell you that. You already are a saint.



kitesandtrainsandcats
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04 May 2021, 9:32 pm

Aspie1 wrote:
On the other hand, the same feelings weren't "me" or "my kindness", but rather a mere brain anomaly.

Are they merely a brain anomaly or do they come from something which originates in your soul and then passes through your brain?

p.s. IC Green Diamond, cool!


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kitesandtrainsandcats
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04 May 2021, 9:36 pm

mmboutwest1 wrote:
At first, I was like , "Ya, I knew that" but then I was like 'wait, I have gone all this time, had all this friggin anxiety, hurt myself every way possible with issues of high pain tolerance, and I am just now finding out I have this beauthiful gift'.
W O W. So now going to go for some testing. Got myself all going forward on this.

The thing takes on a whole new dimension when you know what it is, what it does, what it gives, what you can Do about it, and perhaps most importantly, Do with it.


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Aspie1
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04 May 2021, 9:52 pm

Mountain Goat wrote:
If you are following Jesus Christ you are a saint. You do not need a church to tell you that. You already are a saint.
Thank you. But technically, I'm not. I'm a staunch atheist today, and before I renounced religion in 2011 (when my childhood soul fully died), I was Jewish. Saints are a Roman Catholic and Eastern Orthodox concepts; Judaism doesn't have it, Protestantism doesn't have it, and Islam has a similar concept but treats them as simply role models. So what does that make me now, I don't know, and don't really care to find out. I'm less unhappy now than I was during childhood, and that's enough for me.

kitesandtrainsandcats wrote:
Aspie1 wrote:
On the other hand, the same feelings weren't "me" or "my kindness", but rather a mere brain anomaly.
Are they merely a brain anomaly or do they come from something which originates in your soul and then passes through your brain?
Good question! 8O

On second thought, nah! I don't have a kind soul anymore. :| It was whittled out of me by a combination of life's unfortunate events, being mistreated by people, and simply growing up. The last part of my childhood soul died in 2011, at age 28. Any kindness I show today, it's due to intellectually learned compassion and ability to pick my battles. And even then, it's only toward a small selection of people I feel truly earned it from me. I often joke that I sold my soul for cash during the Great Recession, despite it coming a few years before 2011.

Come to think of it, I tried sharing my "kindness" thoughts from childhood, with my therapist as an early teen, to see if she can tell me where they came from. She just tilted her head and cooed "aww!", like I was a two-week old puppy flopping on my belly while trying to walk. In other words, she thought it was the cutest and/or most pathetic thing she ever heard, and nothing worth taking seriously. That one reaction taught me a lesson: keep all my "kindness" thoughts to myself, to avoid being mocked. I saved face by lying to her that I "made it up", and never mentioned those thoughts again: not to her, not to anyone else (except here on WP).



Last edited by Aspie1 on 04 May 2021, 10:13 pm, edited 3 times in total.

kitesandtrainsandcats
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04 May 2021, 10:06 pm

Aspie1 wrote:
In other words, she thought it was the cutest and/or most pathetic thing she ever heard, and nothing worth taking seriously.


Oh dear, how sad.


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04 May 2021, 10:51 pm

I am in a bit of a similar boat, being at the start of my own "Am I Asperger's/HF ASD?" journey. I look back at my life and realize that a lot of the wonder of why I seemed so "unique" (but not necessarily in a good way, as all of my unique traits seemed to always draw the attention of abusers/bullies) could be autistic traits that were manifesting and went unnoticed because I learned enough coping or masking skills to come off as being just a bit weird, but not on the spectrum.

It does not help that when many of us undiagnosed adults were kids, Autism awareness was still being fleshed out, with many stigmas and misunderstandings by the public that continue even today. That no one really thought "Oh, there are probably thousands, possibly millions of undiagnosed adults" is astounding to me; the focus has always been on identifying children who are Autistic, not in trying to see if adults might be as well. And that leaves many of us just kinda mystified and wondering...even doubting.

"Am I actually on the spectrum?"
"Are these traits just oddball quirks that make me unique?"
"What if I am Autistic?"
"What if I am NOT Autistic?"

These are thoughts I have (and they are a bit simplified to be honest). And I occillate between having a good grasp on it. I am a year out from getting diagnosed. I scored 34 on the AQ test, a 15/80 on the EQ test, 130/200 for my Aspie score and a 76/200 on my NT score.

There is a chance that maybe I am just...aloof, eccentric, odd, weird, reserved...any of the various adjectives that have been used to fit me over the years. Right? But then, it looks, based on those scores and what they mean (keeping in mind that online tests do not equal diagnosis), that I am very likely an Aspie. And when I look at my life with that perspective, EVERYTHING makes sense, from the times I had a school counsellor work with me on recognizing emotional states by facial expression, to some of my early speech therapies, to my near literal interpretations of information that got me beaten on several occasions, to actually having a baby sitter (an adult woman who was 40 years old who I considered a friend of equal social stature when I was 7-10 yrs old) teach me how conversations work...to walking on the balls of my feet to this day, aged 38, to removing any door in my home except the front door because I get tired of knocking on them to enter (when no one is here but me), to always feeling alone and misunderstood and frustrated that certain things that seem so simple are apparently a difficulty and point of struggle for "normal" people, and that me knowing and seeing the simplicity doesn't earn me respect or gratitude but made me a pariah...and on the reverse feeling like there was some secret out there that I just did not get that made normal people thrive in social settings, and issue that took me years to get over to the point where I stopped caring about it.

And never knowing why any of these experiences that were points of struggle for me, or just strange quirks of mine, were the way they were until the one moment when somebody (my mother) suggested in hindsight that maybe I am on the spectrum...

And bam, suddenly everything makes so much sense.

But at 38 I struggle with this notion, not because it scares me (quite the opposite in fact, it feels RIGHT to me), but because I have spent 38 years thinking I am NT, and I can't just ignore this niggling notion that I might still be "NT" with a hefty portion of weird.

So, to reiterate: I get it. I can really see where you are coming from, because hey, I am in the same boat.



browneyedgirlslowingdown
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04 May 2021, 11:26 pm

I appreciate this post so much. I read a research article last week on Aspie girls and sobbed for hours. There is so much suffering I could have avoided had someone helped me or intervened. I am waiting for my assessment appointment in two weeks. I have been odd/different my whole life; looking at aspie criteria, I meet it; reading through this site hits me so deeply. I have read countless books, research articles, and so forth, and even people have mentioned it to me. Still, for some reason, I just feel like they will say no, because I can talk or because I have a job, but all the other things, having to make rule lists for friends, what's a safe person and what's not, not understanding intent, struggling with eye contact, not being able to be touched, all the sensory stuff, figuring out how to be a girl at work, or a girl with girls, or what face to make, or sound to make, and so many other rules. I am always playing roles, sometimes I don't even want to, and it just happens, parroting, imitating. Sorry for ranting. I am kind of anxious and overwhelmed, but I am grateful to be here and for this post.

browneyedgirl


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Diagnosed ASD 5/17/21
AQ 40/50
Your broader autism cluster (Aspie) score: 153 of 200
Your neurotypical (non-autistic) score: 50 of 200
You are very likely on the broader autism cluster (Aspie)
Systemising Quotient (SQ) 78
Empathy Quotient (EQ) 41
CAT-Q 156 Compensation 56 Masking 48 Assimilation 52


kitesandtrainsandcats
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04 May 2021, 11:28 pm

browneyedgirlslowingdown wrote:
Sorry for ranting. I am kind of anxious and overwhelmed, but I am grateful to be here and for this post.

It's okay.
Say what you need to say.
Wishing you peace and success. :D


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browneyedgirlslowingdown
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04 May 2021, 11:31 pm

kitesandtrainsandcats wrote:
browneyedgirlslowingdown wrote:
Sorry for ranting. I am kind of anxious and overwhelmed, but I am grateful to be here and for this post.

It's okay.
Say what you need to say.
Wishing you peace and success. :D


Thank you


_________________
Diagnosed ASD 5/17/21
AQ 40/50
Your broader autism cluster (Aspie) score: 153 of 200
Your neurotypical (non-autistic) score: 50 of 200
You are very likely on the broader autism cluster (Aspie)
Systemising Quotient (SQ) 78
Empathy Quotient (EQ) 41
CAT-Q 156 Compensation 56 Masking 48 Assimilation 52


ThisTimelessMoment
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04 May 2021, 11:55 pm

Every lifeform is unique. Every mind is unique. There might be groupings, but every individual is one of a kind.

The explanatory power of autism to explain my life is great enough that I don't feel I need a diagnosis. I just know. I have other issues that are also at play which can be confusing , but underneath that there is autism.
I have grown to realise how little psychiatry and psychology understand. They are often just stumbling in the dark. The diagnostic criteria for autism are an uncertain guide.
Also where I am I am unlikely to get much benefits due to my autism appearing quite "high functioning"

Eventually all that matters is how I understand myself. Any label (such as autism or ADHD) is only a guide to me developing that understanding of self.


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