Did you use to think you were the only one??

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Jayo
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13 Feb 2024, 9:23 pm

More of a question for Gen-Xers like myself, or early Millennials, or Boomers...

Before you knew of your ASD diagnosis, or even knew what it was, did you think that you were the only one??

I can tell you that I certainly felt this way, during my childhood in the '80s and youth in the '90s, before being diagnosed with Aspergers in 2001.

It was an uneasy feeling like, OK I'm different but can't explain how, or why I alienate people or cause them to have odd reactions to me...and I don't know of anyone else like this. At times, panic set in, when I thought "What if I'm the only one with this condition?? What if doctors and specialists know nothing about this and there's no name for it?" YES, I did actually think that, and turns out I was right on the money on that latter part!!
8O :(



CockneyRebel
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13 Feb 2024, 11:38 pm

I felt that I was the only one until my mum told me about my Dx in Late 1989.


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colliegrace
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13 Feb 2024, 11:46 pm

I actually never felt different, per se.... I was pretty oblivious to the ways that my brain works being unusual. My special interests dominated every single area of my life, but then I discovered fandoms full of people obsessing over the same things I did. So I thought that was totally normal.
And it never occurred to me that loving and admiring dogs so much that you long to BE a dog was not normal.

There were sometimes symptoms and stuff in my adult life that I couldn't make sense of, though. Or I blamed them on other things... when I had meltdowns, I thought they were panic attacks. Though sometimes they didn't seem exactly like panic attacks, but I figured they must still be that.
I also didn't realize I had sensory issues. I just knew sometimes I'd feel sick for no apparent reason. And even when I did learn about sensory issues, I imposter syndromed my way out of believing I had them.


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MjrMajorMajor
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14 Feb 2024, 12:10 am

I did for the longest time.



belijojo
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14 Feb 2024, 12:16 am

I'm so wrapped up in my own world that I don't even have time to care about what other people look like, let alone compare me to them.


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auntblabby
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14 Feb 2024, 12:35 am

all my life i've met people like myself, but we didn't always get along.



Jakki
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14 Feb 2024, 4:35 am

Was beaten into believing , i was the only one by 2 older siblings and at least one parent reinforced their behaviour. :(


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naturalplastic
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14 Feb 2024, 5:02 am

Pretty much.

Everyone telling you that everything in the world is wrong with you...or so it seems.

Even the shrinks they send you to (in the era prior the expansion of the "spectrum").

Finnally learning that all of those things in that laundry list of things wrong with you are all under one heading (that of aspergers or HFA or whatever).

I probably met fellow aspies growing up but didnt "type them" as such in my head until recently (before I was actually diagnosed but was aware of aspergers/HFA and suspected myself there were workmates whom I also suspected...some later confirmed to be to be that).



Last edited by naturalplastic on 14 Feb 2024, 5:10 am, edited 1 time in total.

autisticelders
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14 Feb 2024, 5:08 am

yes, until I was diagnosed at 68, the world was confusing, upsetting, baffling, distressing.

I had been raised to believe it was all my fault, that if I was only a better person people would like me, that if I would just "stop it" and "pull myself together", "try harder", etc, things would get better.

I kept trying my hardest, failing miserably. Diagnosis changed everything. I was not a moral failure, I was not a bad person, not deliberately wicked/evil/bad.

What a relief!

I had something that was based in my neurology and nobody knew! I was so happy to find there were others out there like me, who actually experienced some of the same things, and who understood!


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Edna3362
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14 Feb 2024, 5:25 am

I still do, but for reasons nothing to do with autism.


As for autism itself -- even if I didn't knew it's autism, I just don't think I'm the only one.
More like I kept hoping I'm not the only one.

I kept looking signs of dissimilarities from the majority; from NTs in general, but mostly from everyone including other autistics. It did not matter how or why.

All I do know is that a lot of advices and a lot of allegories do not seem apply to me and it is true.

I can keep looking at everyone's stories, at external references -- almost all of it, do not help me, do not resonate me, do not make me feel seen, do not make me feel like I respect or pity this person...
It doesn't help me learn, because of a lot of unaccounted for factors and reasons underneath the downfall and underneath someone's sudden bloom... All the unspoken prerequisites to pass the selection biases or what made others exclude, or what made others an exception.

This particular circumstance of mine made me see intersectionality too easily, might be practicing it as an even younger age as a process (like anything else; not even knowing the term for it exists) and see it as something that is so stupid easy and overly simplistic...


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Mountain Goat
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14 Feb 2024, 6:18 am

Yes. No one else like me! :D

Remember inprimary school we were told the story of the ugly duckling and I said "That's me!" and I was told off for saying it, but I could relate to that ducklings that was picked on and became a Swan!


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magz
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14 Feb 2024, 8:15 am

No, I used to believe everyone has the same difficulties, only others hide it better.
Really.


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blitzkrieg
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14 Feb 2024, 8:47 am

I always thought of myself in a minority of cognition, though not unique, as inevitably there would/will be others.



Jakki
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14 Feb 2024, 11:36 am

Mountain Goat wrote:
Yes. No one else like me! :D

Remember inprimary school we were told the story of the ugly duckling and I said "That's me!" and I was told off for saying it, but I could relate to that ducklings that was picked on and became a Swan!



Yup..yupp...definitely...Mountaingoat ... is surely a One off .. Individual :D .and thats why he makes a good poster on WP ......And RailRoad company boss ... 8) ..IMHO .


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ToughDiamond
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14 Feb 2024, 9:02 pm

No, I didn't think I had any impairments. I thought it was just that the world is a somewhat nasty place in some ways, that a lot of people were stupid or rather flawed, and that occasionally I had bad luck. I was always fairly proud of my ability to think logically and to solve practical problems, but I didn't think that was unique. My secondary school and the places I worked in afterwards contained a lot of bright people. And there were usually a few people around who I didn't consider to be particularly flawed.



bee33
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14 Feb 2024, 10:42 pm

I was always kind of baffled at how other kids seemed to know what they were supposed to do and I didn't. They just seemed to know what to say and how to act and they didn't blurt out weird things. I learned early on that it was very easy to say the wrong thing without meaning to, so it was safer to not say anything unless in a very familiar environment with people I knew well. So I was seen as "shy."

But I didn't think of myself as inferior or wrong, I was just puzzled by other people. I too was proud of being smart and logical and was happy with myself within my own mind.