One thing that scares me about my autism

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Hollywood_Guy
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17 Dec 2021, 9:42 pm

Usually I just accept my mild autism condition as a part of me like my hazel eyes and coarse body hair are a part of me. But there is one thing I was thinking about, those with autism most likely died alone and in pain during more primitive times compared to the non-autistic population.

I know it became politically incorrect to say that people with autism or something else like Down Syndrome are not "normal", but I think this was what the realistic fate was of those of us in those environments because we lack social skills and have sensory issues to noise and smell, and I don't know if there can be exceptions to that or not. I believe my own symptoms personally are still mild enough that in the current modern environment my everyday living isn't really affected at all.

It's still scary though, if civilization does collapse (which I believe it will do anyway) I might be screwed and I know everyone else especially with more severe autistic symptoms will definitely be screwed in such an environment.



TenMinutes
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17 Dec 2021, 9:55 pm

Autistic people with learning disability have a life expectancy of about 39, those without disability about 58, and on average, about 54. Even in functioning, modern society, there is a mortality cost of going it alone.



Sweetleaf
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18 Dec 2021, 1:43 am

TenMinutes wrote:
Autistic people with learning disability have a life expectancy of about 39, those without disability about 58, and on average, about 54. Even in functioning, modern society, there is a mortality cost of going it alone.


I have a learning disability, but I figure and hope I can go beyond 39...I am 32, and I feel fine outside of gaining 20 pound more weight than I had in my 20's when I generally weighed between 95 and 100 pounds, now I am at 120 which I guess is not unhealthy if anything I was probably rather underweight before.

But yeah seems odd that simply having a learning disability would lower life-span that much.


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Joe90
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18 Dec 2021, 5:41 am

TenMinutes wrote:
Autistic people with learning disability have a life expectancy of about 39, those without disability about 58, and on average, about 54. Even in functioning, modern society, there is a mortality cost of going it alone.


Why will Asperger's (no physical health problems) make me die so young?


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theprisoner
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18 Dec 2021, 5:45 am

Higher susceptibility to stress related illness


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DuckHairback
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18 Dec 2021, 6:05 am

theprisoner wrote:
Higher susceptibility to stress related illness


This is the one that concerns me. I'm pretty stressy and have already had one bout with cancer.

That and the fact I have an abnormally high heart rate.



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18 Dec 2021, 6:37 am

if society collapses, everybody is in trouble. It is scary to think of a society where nobody ever reaches out to help another person, but we have not reached that yet. Hope you can find peace inside yourself and live for today, prepare a bit for tomorrow, do self care right now and always first.
https://www.ready.gov/ to feel better about what might happen in the future. There is only so much anybody can do, but we can do a few simple things to put odds more in our favor. best wishes


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18 Dec 2021, 7:13 am

So stress does cause cancer, therefore it was my fault my mum died of cancer. If I was born NT like everyone else she would still be here today. :cry:


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Steve1963
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18 Dec 2021, 7:15 am

You can't play the "what if" game. My mom died last Friday from covid. She was 91 and unvaccinated. We just couldn't convince her to get it. I tried, but I'm not blaming myself for her death.



Joe90
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18 Dec 2021, 7:39 am

Steve1963 wrote:
You can't play the "what if" game. My mom died last Friday from covid. She was 91 and unvaccinated. We just couldn't convince her to get it. I tried, but I'm not blaming myself for her death.


My mum was 56. She died from cancer. Her 4 siblings are all clear of cancer and they had neurotypical children with no mental health issues. My mum had 2 children, both on the spectrum with mental health issues and caused her a LOT of unique stress over the years, stress that other parents didn't have to put up with. Autism, ADHD and depression are challenging disorders to bring up children with. I could go on forever about how much severe stress I caused my mum from the age of 4 to about the age of 24. Twenty years she had to deal with challenging behaviour from me; frequent tantrums, rage, hyperactivity, self-loathing, constant whining and chattering, social isolation, being a burden, having rage outbursts when I got older...the list goes on. And my brother caused her severe stress too, trying to commit suicide and drinking himself stupid to forget his emotional pain. Nobody wants to see their children like that. Being so we were brought up well in a secure environment, if we had been neurotypical we probably would have been stable, happy children.


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18 Dec 2021, 7:49 am

Joe90 wrote:
So stress does cause cancer, therefore it was my fault my mum died of cancer. If I was born NT like everyone else she would still be here today. :cry:


Absolutely not. There's no evidence that stress alone does this. It's very difficult to pinpoint the cause of cancer - genetics, enviromental factors, diet all contribute in insanely complex ways. Unless it's smoking or working around toxic chemicals, it's very hard to say what causes anyone's cancer. Stress is a factor, because it weakens the immune system. But that doesn't make you responsible for your mother's illness, even if she did stress about you. All (good) parents have anxieties about their children. It's part of the deal. And from what I hear, it doesn't stop when the children are grown up, they're always a worry. But some people are more prone to stress and anxiety than others, and those people will find things to stress about. I'm one of those. My cancer developed in the first 18 months of my daughter's life when I was hardly sleeping (because she hardly slept) and eating badly and yes, super stressed as a new parent. I've no doubt these things contributed to my illness. But I don't believe they caused it (everyone goes through this as a new parent, not everyone gets cancer) and I certainly don't blame my daughter for it.

You have to give yourself a break, it wasn't your fault. You're still grieving and trying to do so in the middle of a global pandemic that is making everything feel catastrophic and bleak. It sucks and I'm sorry but you need to find a way to be a bit kinder to yourself.



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18 Dec 2021, 7:57 am

TenMinutes wrote:
Autistic people with learning disability have a life expectancy of about 39, those without disability about 58, and on average, about 54. Even in functioning, modern society, there is a mortality cost of going it alone.


Those statistics are based on a bunch of "more likely to" factors. More likely to not have a job with healthcare. More likely to live in a poor high crime area. More likely to live in a poor high air pollution area. More likely to have accidents. More likely to be victimized. More likely to have a poor diet. More likely to indulge in coping vices like overeating, smoking, drinking and doing drugs. The list goes on and on. But autism itself doesn't affect longevity.



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18 Dec 2021, 8:04 am

Sweetleaf wrote:
TenMinutes wrote:
Autistic people with learning disability have a life expectancy of about 39, those without disability about 58, and on average, about 54. Even in functioning, modern society, there is a mortality cost of going it alone.


I have a learning disability, but I figure and hope I can go beyond 39...I am 32, and I feel fine outside of gaining 20 pound more weight than I had in my 20's when I generally weighed between 95 and 100 pounds, now I am at 120 which I guess is not unhealthy if anything I was probably rather underweight before.

But yeah seems odd that simply having a learning disability would lower life-span that much.


I'm 59 close to 60 and I'm in pretty good health. Like I said in my previous post, it's not autism and learning disabilities that gives poor longevity statistics, it's what having autism and leaning disabilities can lead to that gives poor longevity statistics.



TenMinutes
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18 Dec 2021, 11:28 am

theprisoner wrote:
Higher susceptibility to stress related illness


Higher susceptibility to stress related illness
Not having help with anything
Nobody living with you to notice things going wrong over time, or even suddenly
Executive function failure making self care spotty
Prone to accidents
Low income
Distrust of people, including health care professionals
Poor self advocacy skills
Poor diet



Last edited by TenMinutes on 18 Dec 2021, 11:32 am, edited 1 time in total.

IsabellaLinton
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18 Dec 2021, 11:31 am

Poor self-advocacy with doctors
Problems with interoception (understanding or describing physical or even mental health symptoms)
Doctors not taking us seriously
Adaptive functioning issues - not being comfortable making appointments or meeting new doctors

The list goes on.



TenMinutes
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18 Dec 2021, 11:42 am

I'm 57. I have an extremely good immune system, I'm more fit than most people half my age. But I have high blood pressure and a heart rate that drops into the 40's on occasion. I am stress in human form. I've seen a doctor once in the last thirteen years. I have no help with anything. I wish I was dead hundreds of times per day.