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Sorting it all out

I have taken several online Autisim assessment quizes, tests now. I have repeated the AQ test about 5 times and the Aspie Quiz 3 times. I have also completed a similar test from a book I sm reading. No matter what mood I am in, no matter how I check my self to ensure honest answers, I get similar results. Significant autistic traits.

I am trying to be cautious here. I realize that there is some possibility that I am unconciously skewing results based on my deep need to belong. Taking tests is something I do very well. I could simply be answering each question by intuiting the answer that will lead me down the path of "redemption".

I want to get an official screening just for my own knowledge and that redemption. Yes, having an official diagnosis would change my life. At least my understanding if my life.

When I first stumbled on the idea of me being on the spectrum, about a week ago, I initially rejected the idea. But I watched a few videos on YouTube and I felt like I was watching myself. That got my attention so I took the AQ test. And there it was a score of 36. Significant Autistic traits. Just wow! I waited a day and took the test again trying to be brutally honest. Score 38.

Yes, yes! Finally an explaination for ME. An explaination that does not involve secret adoptions, alien abduction or quantum leaps through the matrix. Just me and a few diviations in my brain wiring.

But all if this is complicated by my perceptions of my life experiences. I stumbled on this idea of Autsim whilst researching therapy for what I have believed was trauma from being raised by a narcississt. And now everything I believed to be true has gone topsy turvy. Like an ambiguous image that shifts depending on what your eyes concentrate on. Here a rabbit, there a duck.

But what if my neurological wiring is just getting the wrong message? A tone of voice perceived one way but not in the way the speaker intended? The sarcasim missed in a statement. The intention misunderstood.

One of my most troubling memories is of benign neglect, that is, neglect without willfull malice. My mother, a single mom, often worked 2 jobs to make ends meet. I grew up resentful because my brother appeared to suck down the limited resources that my mother had. In my mind, I had inadequate clothing, food and dental care because he got all her attention and every penny she had for care. But is this true? What if what is really true is that unable to relate to either of my family members I could not communicate my needs in a way that my mother understood?

In any case, long ago I decided that I could not solve the mystery of my upbringing or parse the emotional upheaval of my first marriage into happiness NOW. I had decided that my only option was to move forward with the emotional maturity I have gained along the way. This is still true whether I am a card carrying member of the spectrum crowd or not.

And now I have arrived where I started. So the question remains, at 54, eith a life time of coping skills learned and no career to worry about, child raised, and a wondeful husband. Does knowing, difinatively, that I am on the spectrum really change my life?

I think the answer is yes because knowing might give me insight about myself so that I understand that my relationships with others is not the dark thing I think it is. At least I hope so.

Also, if I could know, really know, maybe I wouldn't feel like such a fraud. Whenever I have to mentally retreat because my energy is drained, or I am confused by why someone is behaving the way they are, I feel like a stupid brat "making waves" as my mother would say. I don't want to think of myself like the trouble maker in the room. If I had an answer, even if I do not disclose, maybe I could feel more confident to create, as much as I am able, the space I need to function well. I would much rather have others think I am stupid than to feel stupid.


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