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Losing my protection

Discussion in 'General Autism Discussion' started by SimonSays, Feb 18, 2021.

  1. SimonSays

    SimonSays Time is an illusion I seem to have a lot of V.I.P Member

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    Today I had another assessment. It was probably the best assessment that I’ve had so far. A phone call from a psychologist who happened to also be a Jew, which was something he recognised in me and asked me about; he even wanted to know the name of the rabbi I’d spoken to a few months back because he is based where I used to live. I could detect a little synchronicity gently stroking me.

    By the end of it he recognised ASD in me but said that there is a two year waiting list to be officially tested under the NHS. Not enough funding and too many people waiting. So I'm not holding my breath on that one. But more importantly, what I realised in being able to talk to him and feel able to say things I wanted to say, was that for the last five or six years it is clear I have become a lot more autistic. I don’t mean it's getting worse, it's just getting realer. The ability to hide my issues has been dissolving. I’ve been losing my protection.

    At first I wondered if what I was experiencing might be senility or even insanity, but now I understand that by letting out what had been hidden, I am experiencing it more fully, and for the last few years I've been living under tremendous anxiety and stress which has played its part in breaking down the old protection structure. And because I don't know how to experience myself properly as my autistic self, having spent so much of my life effectively being somebody else, it has become somewhat overwhelming.

    So that was a good realisation and there may even be some support coming. He will get back to me next week or the week after with what could be some kind of therapeutic assistance, even if an actual ASD diagnosis is not going to be forthcoming. He was honest and explained that it wouldn’t really make much difference anyway, and a two year waiting list means there isn't much point in just focussing on that. There may be something else that can be offered. That was about as optimistic as it gets for me.
     
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  2. Aspychata

    Aspychata Serenity waves, beachy vibes

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    The important thing is that you feel more certain about yourself. Maybe you can be yourself now! l struggled a lot with who l really was. Now l am comfortable though undiagnosed.
     
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  3. SimonSays

    SimonSays Time is an illusion I seem to have a lot of V.I.P Member

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    Maybe. Perhaps I can finally discover who that really is.
     
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  4. unperson

    unperson Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    I have seen discussions about whether people become more autistic with aging, like after middle age, you lose some abilities you've previously worked on acquiring. I'm less social than ever with aging, so I don't use the stuff I worked at acquiring and maybe that's part of it.

    You may as well get on the waiting list, why not. I think I had a 9 month wait just due to the scarcity of people who could dx adults 20 years ago, that was with a paid shrink, not the public health system. Have heard of lots of other long waits too.
     
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  5. SimonSays

    SimonSays Time is an illusion I seem to have a lot of V.I.P Member

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    True. I certainly won't say no if they want to put me on it.
     
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  6. SimonSays

    SimonSays Time is an illusion I seem to have a lot of V.I.P Member

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    Exactly. I think I was just very good at living inside my own creation. For a while I even seemed to be succeeding at it as if who I really was didn't matter. It did. Big time. Perhaps that is why it has become such an uphill struggle.
     
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  7. Neonatal RRT

    Neonatal RRT Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    I went through this process of introspection, acceptance, self-awareness, and self-study,...before and after my diagnosis. It wasn't like my wife had a heart-to-heart conversation and she suggested I seek help,...quite the opposite,...I made the decision on my own and told her about it later. I was in a position and financial privilege to simply pay for the assessment and it only took 2 weeks of waiting for an appointment.

    Since that time, it has been a slow process for myself and some of my close co-workers to better understand what an ASD is and how best to deal with it on a daily basis. I also have become aware, that over 30+ years at work, and 50+ years of living, that no matter what the diagnosis, there has been a "moral diagnosis" of me by family and co-workers. At no point has anyone suddenly changed their attitude towards me once they became aware of my diagnosis. However, what it has done is given me a small degree of "grace" or consideration with my employer. If you work with a large group of people, at some point, someone, sometime, is going to get offended by "Aspie honesty",...and complain to the boss behind your back. Most neurotypicals generally avoid confrontation and "crucial conversations". Additionally, this process of self-awareness has allowed me to drop some of the masking,...mainly because it is mentally exhausting, it is not good to be constantly "on stage" and "acting" for the benefit of others,...and it is in the realm of being deceptive and dishonest with others, something that I dislike about neurotypical communication, in general. At some point in your life, you will notice that your brain simply isn't as "sharp" as it used to be,...I am in my 50's and starting to notice all the tiny little things in daily life that my brain simply isn't processing as well as it did, say, 10-20 years ago. I am taking a regimen of antioxidants to counteract the damaging effects of neurotransmitter imbalances and to support dopamine and serotonin levels. I am taking a regimen of supplements to help my sleep. I am eating differently,...less carbohydrates. I am far more self-aware of my sensory issues and how my brain feels inside my skull,...and am reacting to it,...instead of ignoring it. I have to take care of myself, being proactive,..."nip things in the bud",...before I get too far into "autism burnout" or having a "meltdown" or "shutdown".

    This sensation or feeling of becoming "more autistic" is one I know all too well. Some of it is simply my "aging brain", some of it being accepting and honest with who I am, and some of it is being more self-aware.
     
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  8. Gift2humanity

    Gift2humanity Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    I did not know you had an assessment today it’s hopefully God it was a fellow Jewish person and that it went well.
    Sorry to hear there is a two year waiting list with the NHS in your area.
    I, wrongly or rightly, interpreted losing your protection as losing the ability to mask your artistic symptoms. You don’t seem the type of person however to mask you seem a genuine person, I mask.
    Yes it is a strain being someone you are not.
    Still I am glad that today went well for you.
     
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  9. Wolfsage

    Wolfsage In training to be Wolf King.

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    Happy for you.
     
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  10. Wolfgangus Faldestolius

    Wolfgangus Faldestolius Little notes from an armchair

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    Eventually, the vividness ceases to take away our self worth. That's a gift.
     
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  11. Thinx

    Thinx Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    I am glad you saw someone who was a bit helpful, and it may lead to more. I think the covid situation has set things back further, and delayed most areas of treatment. It's good to be recognised sometimes, sounds like he recognised you in a number of ways.
     
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  12. Gracey

    Gracey Well-Known Member

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    It has to be dark for us to recognise the light :)

    Pleased to read about your experience today.
    Made me smile :)
     
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  13. Linda Night-owl

    Linda Night-owl Member

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    I'm glad your assessment went well today, and that you have a good advocate working on your behalf now. Synchronicity is a beautiful thing.

    I have also been wondering if I might be experiencing senility, or some type of mental decline. It seems like I'm not able to mask as well as I used to, and I feel a deep sense of mental exhaustion. I think my age may have something to do with it too, and the grief and life changes I'm going through since the death of my husband are having a huge effect on me. I think now is not the best time for to try to sort those things out. I just don't have the energy or the insight for that.

    I'm sorry you are having to wait so long for a diagnosis, but hopefully you will get some help in the meantime.

    I haven't been able to go to my counseling session this week because of the record cold and snow here. I was able to talk with my counselor over the phone, and she said she hasn't been able to talk to the psychologist she has in mind for my diagnosis, because the bad weather forced the offices to close. Next week the weather should be warmer, and offices will be opening back up, so maybe I will find out something soon. I have no idea how long the waiting time will be though.
     
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  14. SimonSays

    SimonSays Time is an illusion I seem to have a lot of V.I.P Member

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    So sorry for your loss.
    Mental exhaustion from grief and life changes. I think masks just cannot be sustained like they once were. Almost taken for granted having been that way for so long. Now, not enough energy and something has to drop.
     
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