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I'm fairly angry and frustrated with life and where it's [not] going and my lack of understanding. Anything. I've had a nice solid headache for over a week straight, my appetite has been nil and my energy level the same. I've begun to assume they're all interconnected somehow and have to try to remind myself to eat in the morning. A difficult task since nothing seems appetizing and it just makes me feel sick when I do. I don't want to complain about all that though. It just seems to come up in my mind a lot. So this is one of those self-exploration posts or something. Joy.

Anyway, I've been thinking a lot. And reading. Analyzing behaviour and all sorts of other fun stuff. And I've come to the realization that I really don't know as much about how to act around people and what to do or say in social situations as I thought I did. I always thought, while I wasn't terribly adept at it, that I was able to do an adequate enough job to get me by. And yes to whomever wants to, feel free to point and laugh. But recently I've begun to see otherwise, and that in most respects, I have lived a relatively isolated life and wasn't exposed to many of the right non-AS things to help me learn about my surroundings and the people in them without turning myself into a chameleon. Makes for some terribly inappropriate and awkward responses. Like when someone you've gotten to know only through casual conversations tells you that they love you. (Yes I am still mulling on that.) It is to my understanding, incredibly inappropriate to respond back to that person with "I love you too." But with me that's the typical response you can expect to hear and I don't find it to be weird that someone would say that in the first place, or that response came out of me back. I think with neurotypicals that sets off alarm bells or something? The things that upset and put me into defensive mode are when people say that I'm attractive or that they think I'm nice. Then the instinctual response is to lash out and get as far away as possible. And I'm often having to remind myself that I'm 2(5), not 16, and that certain sexual behaviours and responses to behaviours are very much not ok. But how does one stop and keep from being taken advantage of? It's damn near impossible! Frankly, I'm surprised when I think back on my life and all the situations I've been in, that I was never sexually assaulted. I consider myself fairly lucky in that respect.

One specific time I can recall was back when I was around 16 and was going home from a (boy)friends house by myself. I was offered a ride home by some random guy, he was in his mid 20's if I recall correctly. Has happened a lot and I've never found it to be strange or dangerous, just jumped right in and gave them directions to an area nearby my house. Never directly to it, just near. I was at least smart enough about that. Anyway, he had asked me what I was out doing; I told him I was visiting a friend and then, like it was nothing, the subject of sex came up. Specifically bj's and how I didn't do them. He thought that it was give and get. If a guy goes down on a girl, then the girl should go down on the guy, blah, blah, blah. Pretty sure the point has been made. To me it was like discussing the weather; or how your relatives are doing. Very run of the mill. And I was completely unfazed. Now of course I have a better understanding of how and why that was not ok, but I also know that if I was put into the same situation now my response would be virtually the same because while I do know how to lie, I don't know how to not be honest, blunt, keep my mouth shut or say no. And I don't know if I ever will. It's so incredibly frustrating to not know why, or how to fix it. Short of completely re-wiring my brain anyway.

Just another symptom.

I'd like to think that being around James so much over the past few years has helped though. He's been there for me to bounce things off of and try new things with. He's almost always willing to do things with and for me. Play games, watch movies, go for a walk, whatever. And I'm more comfortable listening to music that I like around him because he likes it too. I've never had that before with anyone else. He also helps me understand when it's not a good time or place to do something and rarely lets me press the issue. With him around I've found that my recognition of problems when they arise and learning how to deal with them has become easier, even if it does still take me a little while.

I don't know where I would be without him.

Comments

( 5 comments — Leave a comment )
fly_among_stars
May. 2nd, 2010 02:59 pm (UTC)
AS / music
I can definitely relate to some of this entry. I've had trouble coming up with appropriate responses and knowing how to interact with people throughout my life. Sometimes I would wonder if I had Asperger's or some other type of autistic disorder -- I definitely have some of the characteristic traits (physical pressure, i.e. squeezing myself, comforts me in stressful situations; eye contact used to be extremely distressing; didn't understand sarcasm and body language, etc.) In my case, I don't think it's to a diagnosable extent, and most of the issues I had were probably due to the isolation caused by being homeschooled rather than to funky neuron wiring. Still though, it took me a long time to learn how to interact normally, and I've really only gotten good at it in the past 1.5 years.

If you don't mind me asking, what kind(s) of music do you like? We probably don't have any overlap, but I'm always looking for new styles to check out.
schwarzkatze
May. 11th, 2010 08:21 am (UTC)
Re: AS / music
From everything I've read in your journal it wouldn't surprise me in the least to hear that you did have it. The way you're able to focus on your work so much and seem to have a much higher grasp of language. You seem to have a really good handle on how the world works without needing a formal diagnosis, though I don't think they hurt much. And I love reading what you write, even if I don't say much in regards to it. You articulate yourself brilliantly and it's a lot more thoughtful than most people I've known.

As for music... I think that is a little hard to pin down. I'll listen to a little bit of everything and it would actually be easier to point out what I don't listen to than what I do, which would be country, religious and [rap, r&b, hip-hop] (all sounds the same to me). But I'm usually listening to anything from 1940's, "goth" or metal themed music.

What about you? I'd love to know the sorts of music you enjoy.
fly_among_stars
May. 11th, 2010 03:25 pm (UTC)
Re: AS / music
Yeah, I definitely have some of the traits listed in the article on Wikipedia, especially the "social interaction" and "speech and language section." I remember discussing the fact that I showed these traits with my mom once (though back then I just called it "autism," not knowing the difference between that and AS), and she saw where I was coming from.

The one thing that really got my attention was that I read somewhere that people with autism or AS often have an extreme aversion to certain sounds. That describes me perfectly. When I was little, my sister humming or my mom playing guitar would literally cause me to run away, hold my ears and want to cry -- my parents would yell at me, saying I was being "intolerant," but I couldn't help it. Even today, certain sounds make me EXTREMELY uncomfortable -- I've just learned to control the urge to do something about it.

I can't stand country and [rap / r&b / hip hop] either, at least the American versions, though I do like church hymns and the serious Christmas songs (i.e., Oh Holy Night, not Jingle Bells). I'm hard to pin down musically, too. I'd say my main genres are rock/metal, electronic, and the combination of the two. My favorite bands are Radiohead and Nine Inch Nails, and most of my favorite music has a dark / disturbing / serious / depressed mood and lyrics. I like lots of different varieties though; I also listen to Jpop, classic rock, and relaxing new-age type music. I've always thought that one of the best ways to know a person is to know their music, so I made a short list of some of my favorite songs which you probably haven't heard before =)

Sad: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U0U_q46jhYM
Relaxed/sad: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nUs-35E2dW0
HAPPY! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4jP7qJRE2Ps
Uplifting: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zr_MJAOyOeU
RAWR: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l5uikBu7fys

As you can see, I like a lot of Japanese music (they're all from Japan except for the 4th, which is from Iceland.)

And I'm glad you like reading my journal, it's nice to know that somebody enjoys my incoherent ramblings =]
schwarzkatze
May. 18th, 2010 08:01 am (UTC)
Re: AS / music
It took a couple of days searching but I remembered where I put it. *ahem* There is an online test you can take here that can give a pretty good idea if you are on the spectrum or not. Of course it's not an official diagnosis by any means, but I still think it's pretty good for people who just want to get an idea and maybe decide if an official diagnosis something they want to pursue or not.

:)

And I wish I could respond more on the music, but that will have to wait until later in the day.
fly_among_stars
May. 23rd, 2010 12:57 am (UTC)
Re: AS / music
http://www.rdos.net/eng/poly12c.php?p1=36&p2=63&p3=30&p4=45&p5=45&p6=32&p7=57&p8=22&p9=38&p10=16&p11=63&p12=27

"You are very likely neurotypical." I guess that's what I was expecting, but still, I definitely have a lot of the aspie traits they asked about in that quiz. Just not as extreme as people who actually do have AS. Another interesting thing: If I'd taken this quiz earlier in life (i.e., midway through high school or earlier), I would probably have scored substantially higher in the aspie category. I guess I've grown out of it as time passed.
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