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Aspies Rejected by Parents

buchman

Member
Oh, it is always assumed you're doing it on purpose. Doesn't matter what it is. Pick your version of neurodiversity.

If you can't pay attention in class it is because you don't want to. If you are poor at sports it is because you are lazy and don't practice. If you can't make friends it is because you don't try and if you commit social faux pas when you try it is because you want to get attention by acting stupid. Either way, you're antisocial. That is how people are wired to think - that you are doing exactly what you want.
I'm fascinated by accounts like yours of other aspies relating their aspie experiences. I never knew I had Asperger's until recently. I always thought of people on the autism spectrum as being like the autistic son of a friend, a teenager who can't speak and is institutionalized. Then I read about a person with Asperger's who once seriously considered that he might be so different from others because he was from another planet and somehow wound up on earth. I was flabbergasted because when I was around 10 or 11 I had thought exactly the same thing. I thought I was the only person who had ever considered that. I began to read more about Asperger's and found that many things I had considered individual quirks unique to me were really common Ap[erger's traits. I was excited that much of my life that had been inexplicable to me began to be explicable. I'm still learning. I just learned the other day that flapping is an Asperger's trait. I had done that up until a few years ago when someone told me it was weird and I stopped (have to keep the mask on!). Your observation about your own childhood are ones I could have written myself. Thanks for sharing!
 

Ken

Well-Known Member
V.I.P Member
I'm fascinated by accounts like yours of other aspies relating their aspie experiences. I never knew I had Asperger's until recently. I always thought of people on the autism spectrum as being like the autistic son of a friend, a teenager who can't speak and is institutionalized. Then I read about a person with Asperger's who once seriously considered that he might be so different from others because he was from another planet and somehow wound up on earth. I was flabbergasted because when I was around 10 or 11 I had thought exactly the same thing. I thought I was the only person who had ever considered that. I began to read more about Asperger's and found that many things I had considered individual quirks unique to me were really common Ap[erger's traits. I was excited that much of my life that had been inexplicable to me began to be explicable. I'm still learning. I just learned the other day that flapping is an Asperger's trait. I had done that up until a few years ago when someone told me it was weird and I stopped (have to keep the mask on!). Your observation about your own childhood are ones I could have written myself. Thanks for sharing!
Yep, we are basically in the same boat. I self-diagnosed in 2019 after hearing a speech by Greta Thunberg and hearing her say she was autistic. That seemed impossible to me as I thought autism was a totally debilitating mental disease. I knew no autistic person could make a speech. So, I started researching autism and in that research, I found me. A profound revelation to find the answers to my life; and that answers even existed.

Yes, my father hated me with a passion. My mother tolerated me, but was deeply disappointed and embarrassed that I was her son. My father, however, did get a lot of enjoyment in bullying me. His words that was repeated so often that they are permanently imprinted in my brain, "When are you ever going to wake up and act like a normal human being." Those words were devastating to me because I had no idea how I was not like a normal human being, nor any clue how to act like a normal human being. As far as I knew, I was just defective. My fathers abuse resulted in several severe, permanent PTSD's.

I left home immediately after graduating high school. Life has been hard, but successful. The thought of being on my own was terrifying, but I thought that even if I died, it would be better than continuing to endure my father. I now realize that as "bad" as my autism is, it has also been a benefit. Indeed, it actually fulfilled my life's dream career.

I never "overcame" my autism and don't think that is possible. What happens is over the years, you learn by experience how to act so as to seem a bit more normal - masking. I never really knew about masking. After all these years, I'm still not good at it even though I have learned what it is. I've just had to compensate in other ways.
 

buchman

Member
Yep, we are basically in the same boat. I self-diagnosed in 2019 after hearing a speech by Greta Thunberg and hearing her say she was autistic. That seemed impossible to me as I thought autism was a totally debilitating mental disease. I knew no autistic person could make a speech. So, I started researching autism and in that research, I found me. A profound revelation to find the answers to my life; and that answers even existed.

Yes, my father hated me with a passion. My mother tolerated me, but was deeply disappointed and embarrassed that I was her son. My father, however, did get a lot of enjoyment in bullying me. His words that was repeated so often that they are permanently imprinted in my brain, "When are you ever going to wake up and act like a normal human being." Those words were devastating to me because I had no idea how I was not like a normal human being, nor any clue how to act like a normal human being. As far as I knew, I was just defective. My fathers abuse resulted in several severe, permanent PTSD's.

I left home immediately after graduating high school. Life has been hard, but successful. The thought of being on my own was terrifying, but I thought that even if I died, it would be better than continuing to endure my father. I now realize that as "bad" as my autism is, it has also been a benefit. Indeed, it actually fulfilled my life's dream career.

I never "overcame" my autism and don't think that is possible. What happens is over the years, you learn by experience how to act so as to seem a bit more normal - masking. I never really knew about masking. After all these years, I'm still not good at it even though I have learned what it is. I've just had to compensate in other ways.
I'm so gla I found thi aaite
 

buchman

Member
Yep, we are basically in the same boat. I self-diagnosed in 2019 after hearing a speech by Greta Thunberg and hearing her say she was autistic. That seemed impossible to me as I thought autism was a totally debilitating mental disease. I knew no autistic person could make a speech. So, I started researching autism and in that research, I found me. A profound revelation to find the answers to my life; and that answers even existed.

Yes, my father hated me with a passion. My mother tolerated me, but was deeply disappointed and embarrassed that I was her son. My father, however, did get a lot of enjoyment in bullying me. His words that was repeated so often that they are permanently imprinted in my brain, "When are you ever going to wake up and act like a normal human being." Those words were devastating to me because I had no idea how I was not like a normal human being, nor any clue how to act like a normal human being. As far as I knew, I was just defective. My fathers abuse resulted in several severe, permanent PTSD's.

I left home immediately after graduating high school. Life has been hard, but successful. The thought of being on my own was terrifying, but I thought that even if I died, it would be better than continuing to endure my father. I now realize that as "bad" as my autism is, it has also been a benefit. Indeed, it actually fulfilled my life's dream career.

I never "overcame" my autism and don't think that is possible. What happens is over the years, you learn by experience how to act so as to seem a bit more normal - masking. I never really knew about masking. After all these years, I'm still not good at it even though I have learned what it is. I've just had to compensate in other ways.
I'm so glad I found this site and fellow aspies who post here! It was just yesterday, and already I've had a bunch of responses to my post, several of which resonate in a way I couldn't believe. Ken,
 

buchman

Member
I'm so glad I found this site and fellow aspies who post here! It was just two days ago, and already I've had a bunch of responses to my post, several of which resonate in a way I couldn't believe (I haven't had a single response from three other sites). Ken, my father enjoyed bullying me, too. We were at the dinner table when he was harrasing me. I couldn't take it anymore, so I tried to make a joke out of it, hoping that would stop him. Purple with rage, he picked up a glass and hurrled it at me, bouncing it off my head. It took my mother a while to calm him down.

I often asked myself, "How can they expect me to have been born knowing how to act?" I now suspect that normal people ARE born knowing in a broad sense how to act, or at least are born with the capacity to quickly form institutions for dealing with the world. People share a common humanity, and we--most of us--know by instinct, intuition, and common sense how to interact with others. Most people seem to say and do things automatically that I have to think through, sometimes successfully, sometimes not. I've been in groups of people of several nationalities and cultures, and they all knew how to make small talk and humorous comments--all except me. I was usually totally lost because I didn't have their sense of the right thing to say. I suspect that's the key feature of Asperger's--we weren't born knowing (or having the capacity to learn quickly) what to say and do. I think many Asperger's symptoms grow out of that frustration.

I'm intrigued that several people here mentioned leaving home early to get away from their parents. I didn't think that I had, but now I remember that in a way I did. In high school, all my fellow honor society members were going away to college but I wasn't--my parents didn't want to spend the money on me. But they wanted me to go to college (as did I)--it was what people in our circle did. So they were going to have me commute to college. But I had to get away from them, so I decided to join the army when I graduated without telling them. I mentioned this to a classmate, who told our guidance counselor. She called my mother in for a meeting. I don't know what she said, but my parents agreed I could go away to college. Typically, while most other parents were taking time off and driving their kids to college or at least to airports and train stations, I walked out of my home carrying my suitcases to a bus. At holiday times, almost all students couldn't leave soon enough for home, but I stayed in my dorm as long as I could to delay going back to my parents.

I've been wondering how bad my autism was as a child and if I overcame it (overcame by learning to act mostly normal, not cured it) because my parents wouldn't tolerate autistic behavior and forced me to act normally from the time I was in a playpen. I can't remember much from my first three years. Thinking you'll be killed, or at best kicked out of the house as my mother often threatened to do, is a strong incentive to mask.
 

UberScout

Are you there, God? ...Hello?
V.I.P Member
Just know that you might have a mother, but fathers are just an old wives tale. They don't really exist. You just have a mother and some guy who never planned on having kids and wants no part of it.
 

Au Naturel

Au Naturel
I often asked myself, "How can they expect me to have been born knowing how to act?" I now suspect that normal people ARE born knowing in a broad sense how to act, or at least are born with the capacity to quickly form institutions for dealing with the world. People share a common humanity, and we--most of us--know by instinct, intuition, and common sense how to interact with others. Most people seem to say and do things automatically that I have to think through, sometimes successfully, sometimes not. I've been in groups of people of several nationalities and cultures, and they all knew how to make small talk and humorous comments--all except me. I was usually totally lost because I didn't have their sense of the right thing to say. I suspect that's the key feature of Asperger's--we weren't born knowing (or having the capacity to learn quickly) what to say and do. I think many Asperger's symptoms grow out of that frustration.

I'm intrigued that several people here mentioned leaving home early to get away from their parents. I didn't think that I had, but now I remember that in a way I did. In high school, all my fellow honor society members were going away to college but I wasn't--my parents didn't want to spend the money on me. But they wanted me to go to college (as did I)--it was what people in our circle did. So they were going to have me commute to college. But I had to get away from them, so I decided to join the army when I graduated without telling them. I mentioned this to a classmate, who told our guidance counselor. She called my mother in for a meeting. I don't know what she said, but my parents agreed I could go away to college. Typically, while most other parents were taking time off and driving their kids to college or at least to airports and train stations, I walked out of my home carrying my suitcases to a bus. At holiday times, almost all students couldn't leave soon enough for home, but I stayed in my dorm as long as I could to delay going back to my parents.

I've been wondering how bad my autism was as a child and if I overcame it (overcame by learning to act mostly normal, not cured it) because my parents wouldn't tolerate autistic behavior and forced me to act normally from the time I was in a playpen. I can't remember much from my first three years. Thinking you'll be killed, or at best kicked out of the house as my mother often threatened to do, is a strong incentive to mask.
This is a textbook description of high-function autism. I tried to avoid my mother at all costs. It was rarely a happy encounter. Plus I was completely self-absorbed, as autistic kids often are. It didn't allow for understanding other people's points of view.

When I went off to college I discovered my autism stayed with me but I was no longer trapped by the social position I'd been locked into. I was able to apply what little I'd learned to not end up as the omega kid.

The university was big enough that there were clubs about things I was interested in. The science fiction club was one of them. I suppose a small community college would not have served as well due to a lack of variety.
 

Luca

charm & chaos
V.I.P Member
I'm so, so sorry you went through those things. That is absolutely horrific and I can never wrap my head around how people can behave that way towards their own children. I'm glad you have found this supportive community here.

My childhood was horrific too, but it was because I was at the mercy of the foster care system for many years.
I was abandoned by my biological parents at a very young age, but before I would have shown any signs of autism. The autism stigma was what kept me in foster care for so long though.
 

Shevek

Well-Known Member
When I was young, my father would tell me to "Stop playing silly bugger." I thought he was just impatient with childhood, but it may have been the Asperger's. Until I learned the Golden Rule, I was getting into a lot of unexpected trouble, and mother (AS) had mentioned one way I could get disowned. I assumed that there were other surprising ways to get kicked out, so I was just trying to hold on until I could support myself. The first time I felt like part of a family was among the other students who had not gone home for Christmas.
 

Ken

Well-Known Member
V.I.P Member
I often asked myself, "How can they expect me to have been born knowing how to act?" I now suspect that normal people ARE born knowing in a broad sense how to act, or at least are born with the capacity to quickly form institutions for dealing with the world. People share a common humanity, and we--most of us--know by instinct, intuition, and common sense how to interact with others. Most people seem to say and do things automatically that I have to think through, sometimes successfully, sometimes not. I've been in groups of people of several nationalities and cultures, and they all knew how to make small talk and humorous comments--all except me. I was usually totally lost because I didn't have their sense of the right thing to say. I suspect that's the key feature of Asperger's--we weren't born knowing (or having the capacity to learn quickly) what to say and do. I think many Asperger's symptoms grow out of that frustration.
Extremely well put. Thank you for making that aspect of my life so clear. It has taken decades for me to figure that one out. I finally came to realize that I am totally socially blind. To this day, I still have no instinct for social interaction. I have learned a few things that are extremely helpful, but the reactions I have learned are blind actions.

Most parents feel they have to teach their kids how to walk and extend great effort in doing so. I don't think that is at all necessary. It it built in. If left alone, the child will walk on their own regardless. The parents see their child learning to walk as they grow older, but they are not "learning" to walk, they only struggle because their muscles and coordination has not yet sufficiently developed. When it does, the child will walk without having to think about it. It's built in. With autism; (at least my autism) social interaction is not built in and there is not even a place in the brain for it. I have learned how to behave to improve interaction, but it is a blind effort and I can never get it perfect. I have no instinct for it.
 

buchman

Member
Extremely well put. Thank you for making that aspect of my life so clear. It has taken decades for me to figure that one out. I finally came to realize that I am totally socially blind. To this day, I still have no instinct for social interaction. I have learned a few things that are extremely helpful, but the reactions I have learned are blind actions.

Most parents feel they have to teach their kids how to walk and extend great effort in doing so. I don't think that is at all necessary. It it built in. If left alone, the child will walk on their own regardless. The parents see their child learning to walk as they grow older, but they are not "learning" to walk, they only struggle because their muscles and coordination has not yet sufficiently developed. When it does, the child will walk without having to think about it. It's built in. With autism; (at least my autism) social interaction is not built in and there is not even a place in the brain for it. I have learned how to behave to improve interaction, but it is a blind effort and I can never get it perfect. I have no instinct for it.
Thanks for your insight!
 

buchman

Member
Extremely well put. Thank you for making that aspect of my life so clear. It has taken decades for me to figure that one out. I finally came to realize that I am totally socially blind. To this day, I still have no instinct for social interaction. I have learned a few things that are extremely helpful, but the reactions I have learned are blind actions.

Most parents feel they have to teach their kids how to walk and extend great effort in doing so. I don't think that is at all necessary. It it built in. If left alone, the child will walk on their own regardless. The parents see their child learning to walk as they grow older, but they are not "learning" to walk, they only struggle because their muscles and coordination has not yet sufficiently developed. When it does, the child will walk without having to think about it. It's built in. With autism; (at least my autism) social interaction is not built in and there is not even a place in the brain for it. I have learned how to behave to improve interaction, but it is a blind effort and I can never get it perfect. I have no instinct for it.
The second line in my post reads "quickly form institutions." It should read "quickly form INTUITIONS." A computer gitch.
 

Shevek

Well-Known Member
Parents don't know how they learned to socialize, so they can't teach it. Mild bullying usually brings someone into group conformity, but when it does not work, people use more instead of different.

Sometimes, people may be just as confused as we are, but just don't let on. I was shopping with a friend, and he had a short conversation with another shopper. He then confided that he had no idea who it was, so there was a 50% chance he had been mistaken for someone else. I had a friend who was a mediator, and he sometimes took calls while we were hanging out. I loved listening to how smooth he sounded and how well he did at calming situations down. One day he remarked that he was just "trying [his] bag of tricks." He didn't pay attention to the details as much as try to remember what the rant reminded him of, and how it had been resolved.
 

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