Why is it so hard

Why is it so hard to process feelings? Why am I finding my thoughts so overwhelming? I cannot think straight, constantly replaying things over and over and over and over.

Why am I different? Why couldn’t I just be normal. I’m crying my eyes out right now, I can’t seem to lift myself out of this mood. I just want to disappear, I don’t feel strong, I dont feel like I am worth anything, I don’t feel like anything.  I’m here existing in this messed up world where I am no one. No one to anyone (other than my babies). I am alone, I will always be alone, no one wants me.

I keep trying to think of my smalls, they are what keeps me going. They are the only people in this world that need and want me. But today its hard, really hard. If I wasn’t an aspie, I wouldn’t be feeling like this, I could shift this meltdown. But I’m not normal. I am me

Today I failed

I have come to terms with my Asperger’s diagnosis and I had thought I was doing ok. But I really struggled this. Over something in the grand scheme of things, that was small. But I couldn’t process it.

My kids had a Xmas shopping afternoon at school where they can choose up to 5 gifts for family at 50p each. We sat down and they wrote out who they wanted to buy for. I sent them in with their lists and money, they were excited and I was for them too. When they came home they were so excited to tell me what they got, but what they got wasn’t on the list and that unexpected change knocked me for six. The brought a gift for someone not on the list and forgot one of the most important people in our lives. I tried to be all happy and excited for them but inside it was killing me. To a ‘normal’ mum this wouldn’t be a problem but for me I just couldn’t process why they did that. I could see the disappointment on their faces when they saw I wasn’t as happy as them. I told them how proud I was off them – they do make me so proud every day – but I couldn’t hide my disappointment. And for that I feel I failed as a parent today. I failed to hide my emotions to protect them. I failed. And now I can’t stop thinking about it, replaying it over and over again. Why do I have to process things differently. I hope when they are older they will understand.

Burnout

I have had a burnout. I thought I was doing ok and life was on track but after everything I have been through this year I have officially had my first burnout.

I am going thru a nasty divorce which involves the courts, non-molestation orders and a narcissistic ex. We were at court on Friday to arrange contact for our children.  Having to sit opposite him was hard enough but listening to his lies about me and contact with the kids was hell. I offered him to see our daughter on her birthday which falls on my weekend with the kids. Her birthday party is all booked so I offered him to take her out for something to eat after and he refused as he didn’t want any more allegations thrown at him! This coming from the man who has breached the non-molestation order 5 times and is due to be arrested for it. He now lives under a different police force, so they apparently cannot just go out and arrest him and must put an arrest plan in place.

So, I started to feel extremely anxious following that. Trying to hide it from my kids was hard. I was due to see my new boyfriend for the weekend so that was helping me keep going. I was going to spend time with someone who liked me, although he wasn’t aware of my Asperger’s at the time. We had planned the weekend a few days before, he was going to spend 2 nights at mine and I was so looking forward to it, as were the kids who we had just introduced the weekend before. It was pizza and movie night. The day was getting on and he hadn’t come around. I asked if he was going to make pizza and movie and he said he wasn’t just go ahead without him he’ll be round as soon as he could after. That was a blow but trying to keep positive I kept going. We spoke, and he was coming over after he dropped off a quote to his uncle. About 10 minutes letter I get a message saying he’s been offered work tomorrow and he knew it would piss me off, but he needed to take it coz he needed the money. I wasn’t pissed off so much as upset, but I understood. We spoke briefly after the message and he said he needed to fill up with petrol and he’d call me back after. Well 2 hours later no call so I messaged him, and he said I was so quiet on the phone he thought it best to leave me alone. That really hurt, and I started feeling all sorts of feelings. Why can’t I be normal and just accept things?

The next day I hadn’t heard from him all day, so I sent him a message saying thinking of you hope you had a good day. He replied, and we engaged in a little conversation. I asked if I would be seeing him tomorrow and he said he’d let me know, bearing in mind my kids are ow involved I just couldn’t understand why he didn’t want to see us. So, I started to hyper-focus on him. He wasn’t reading my messages when he was online, so I went intro overdrive and my anxiety took over. Why am I not worth seeing? Why would you make plans with someone then break them? Has someone better come along? We just introduced our kids, so I couldn’t understand this.

I hoped to see him in the week but wasn’t sure. I tried to keep positive and keep going but my senses were in overdrive.

My kids were due to have contact with their dad on the Monday via phone which was agreed at the court on Friday. Their phone was on and ready but no call. He didn’t call my kids as agreed. That was the icing on the cake. My whole world was falling apart. I decided to go to the pub with my neighbour, but I think my drink was spiked. We were chatting to some guys there and they brought a few drinks. Not that I can remember that as I woke the next morning feeling really confused and lost. Not your typical hangover. I couldn’t remember everything from the day before, just a few things. Can’t remember getting home from work, can’t remember going to the pub, just sat outside in tears over how much I hated my life. My neighbour has filled me in on the rest. 

I don’t know what I did but the new boyfriend blocked me on Facebook and didn’t want to see me again. My messages had been deleted and I have no idea what had happened. I still don’t.

All I know is after the events of the 4 days before led me to a complete burnout. I now feel so alone and confused about what happened. I sent him a message on another social platform that linked to my blog post about coming out with Asperger’s, I don’t even know if he read it or not. My I’m sat here thinking he hates me even more because of my Asperger’s.

The thing is I know I am a decent nice person. I just need structure and don’t know how to react to change. I don’t know how to deal with last minute surprises. I wish I knew how too. I wish I wasn’t on the spectrum and high functioning. People don’t see that you have a hidden disability. Now I’m sat here thinking if he read it he hates me even more because of my Asperger’s. Should I have told him at the start? Or would that have made him not even want to bother? All I know was I started to really like this guy and had felt that I was able to do things I had never been able to do before with my ex.

I don’t feel I can win whatever I do. I feel destined to be on my own forever and I have so much love to give. If I tell someone about my Asperger’s they won’t want to date someone who is autistic and if I don’t tell them and my aspie traits start to show they are going to think I am a mental case. I am not. I just need structure.

If I didn’t have my 2 gorgeous children, I think I probably would have done something silly. They are with their dad this weekend, so I have been alone, which is fine normally, my brain has just been in overdrive about what happened and where do I go from here.

Never have I felt so alone.

 

 

My story continues

Since my first coming out post I haven’t had the courage to tell anyone in my life direct about my Asperger’s. The summer has been quiet, spent working or doing things with the kids. My youngest started school in September and that brought more challenges. A whole new set of parents in the playground to avoid, not make eye contact with or even try to be friends. When my oldest started last September I hadn’t been diagnosed, so I attempted to make friends and I found 2 brilliant ladies that I would call best friends now. These ladies are the ones I have told. One lady is a single mum, newish to the area and the other an older mum with tattoos which I spotted straight away.  Now don’t get me wrong about tats, I love them and have a few myself. I think people with tats are nicer than ones who haven’t got any. That’s just my experience.

The school where my children go to is in a very nice but posh little village and most of the families there are happy, well off and the complete opposite to me. I got my oldest in by fluke and am grateful I did as it is the best school around here. Its outstanding. The 2 ladies I clicked with seemed to stand out from the rest, I suppose that is why I felt I could speak to them. They were a bit different too. But the thought of having to make new friends in the new class scares the hell out of me. They have a rule in school where the older sibling goes to the room of the younger sibling to come out, so I couldn’t stand with my ladies, my security. What I do now is wait there until 15.13 then rush round to the classroom I am meant to be collecting from so I can grab the kids and go. My youngest’s best friend from nursery started school with him and his mum seems nice and pleasant, so I try and chat with her when she sees me, but I don’t go out of my way to speak with her, I stand alone in the playground.

New parents’ mornings and nights have been arranged and I have avoided them again. I just can’t face trying to fit in. The best friends mum does her best to speak with me and ask if I am going to these things and I make my excuses. I think she puts it down to the divorce as she never seems upset that I don’t socialise with her.

My divorce is moving on slowly, the ex thinks I have made up the excuse of having Asperger’s and doesn’t believe me, which is fine as I couldn’t care less about his opinion. I just want to be happy with my children.

I started to date and managed to screw that up as well. I can even see where I went wrong but am powerless to stop myself at the time, I know I can’t as I am wired like this. Maybe I should have been truthful and say about being an Aspie, but I didn’t know what’s worse. Someone leaving coz you’re a bit crazy or coz your autistic. I mean I know I am not crazy, but I am autistic. I think I would prefer to be left over something I am not rather than something I am, something I cannot change. So now its over I sent him a link to my first post. The first time I have directed anyone I know to it. Whether he read it or not I don’t know, but at least I tried to explain. Don’t think I will have the courage to direct anyone I know to there again though. 

I am still struggling with my diagnosis I have great weeks and I have bad weeks but have found a couple of reasons that it’s good to be an aspie.

No 1 – I keep getting tasked with projects at work that require research and have found I am able to throw myself into them to get the complete above and beyond what is expected of me. I get asked to fact find about organisations and what my boss gets is a full-on history of the company, each person, if they’ve been in the news, where the company, what they company mission and vision is going rather than just the standard contacts and address.

No 2 – I have stared to write a book about my divorce and the daily battle I face from my ex. I found it helps me keep my thoughts and anxiety in check and I hope one day when my divorce is finally over I can get it published and make a nice bit of money!

I have also found a great support group of women with Asperger’s, which is nice to be able to see that I am not alone in this and I can talk, well write to people who are just like me. It gives me reassurance about what has happened and the chance to support other women going through the same.

The story continues, I hope next time I will have found some more positives to having Asperger’s

I’m coming out – well sort off

I am in my mid 30’s, a mum to 2 beautiful children, going through a divorce and this year was diagnosed as having Asperger’s. I haven’t told anyone other than my mum and 2 close friends.

For those who don’t know, Asperger’s is a neurological condition. Basically, my brain is wired a bit differently from most ‘normal’ people. It is not a mental illness, it cannot be cured or helped with medication. I am also not crazy, or mentally unstable. I just process things differently to other people, see things differently to other people and react differently compared to other people.

Asperger’s Syndrome is a Pervasive Developmental Disorder that falls within the autistic spectrum. It is a life-long condition, which affects about 1 in 200 people but more commonly in men than women. Those with Asperger’s Syndrome are usually of average or above average intelligence. So that means I am pretty rare being a female aspie and pretty smart (although that doesn’t always come across!).

The Asperger’s brain is wired to be always anxious, which is me down to a T. I’m still discovering what it is like to have Asperger’s, but since finding out it is part of who I am, I’ve been able to look back on my life with a new set of eyes, re-framing my experiences from the Asperger’s perspective. I just wish I could have been honest about who I am to certain people who have been and gone from my life. If I was diagnosed earlier, I could explain to those who I cared about (and there hasn’t been too many) why I am the way I am. I also wish I had the confidence to say to people I have Asperger’s, and this is me.

A little information on what Asperger’s is –

Social interaction

Many people with Asperger’s want to be sociable but have difficulty with initiating and sustaining social relationships, which can make them very anxious. People with the condition may:

Struggle to make and maintain friendships

Not understand the unwritten ‘social rules’ that most of us pick up without thinking. For example, they may stand too close to another person, or start an inappropriate topic of conversation or question something that to a normal person doesn’t need questioning.

Find other people unpredictable and confusing

Become withdrawn and seem uninterested in other people, appearing almost aloof

Behave in what may seem an inappropriate manner.

 

Social Communication

People with Asperger’s sometimes find it difficult to express themselves emotionally and socially. For example, they may:

Have difficulty understanding gestures, facial expressions or tone of voice

Have difficulty knowing when to start or end a conversation and choosing topics to talk about

Be very literal in what they say and can have difficulty understanding jokes, metaphor and sarcasm. For example, a person with Asperger’s may be confused by the phrase ‘That’s cool’ when people use it to say something is good.

How do people with Asperger syndrome see the world?

Some people with Asperger syndrome says the world feels overwhelming and this can cause them considerable anxiety.

In particular, understanding and relating to other people, and taking part in everyday family, school, work and social life, can be harder. Other people appear to know, intuitively, how to communicate and interact with each other, yet can also struggle to build rapport with people with Asperger syndrome. People with Asperger syndrome may wonder why they are ‘different’ and feel their social differences mean people don’t understand them.

Autistic people, including those with Asperger syndrome, often do not ‘look’ disabled. They look like everyone else yet come across as being a bit weird.

So, this is me

Now I don’t suffer from all the typical traits of Asperger’s, and I am also raising 2 brilliant and amazing kids, pretty much done it on my own since they were born and now as a single mum. My kids are awesome, they wouldn’t know their mum is any different.

But I am struggling to find any good points to being an aspie so far, I can only see the bad. I don’t know how to be in a relationship whether that be a friendship or more and surprised I lasted 12 years with my ex, maybe he is one too, he does show the traits but that’s for another post.

There is such a stigma that is attached to Autism that I think I am afraid to tell people. The world is becoming more open to depression and you see posts across social networking saying “my door is always open”, “you can talk to me” etc, but it is not so welcoming to those on the spectrum. People see Autism as something to take the mickey out off which makes it hard for someone on the spectrum to admit that they have it. I am afraid that relationships will change or will be treated differently.

I wish I didn’t have Asperger’s, I wish I could see things normally and didn’t react the way I sometimes do. I wish I could be normal in social situations. But I know I cannot change who I am, I just need to find a way of moving forward.

This is my story so far, an aspie mum. And my story isn’t over

 

Sources

http://aspergerfoundation.org.uk/what_as.htm

https://www.aspie.org.uk/what-is-aspergers-syndrome/