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Unexpected diagnosis

Discussion in 'Help and Support' started by 22222, Oct 16, 2021.

  1. 22222

    22222 Member

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    I didn't have a clue that I was Autistic. I went to see a pschologist for emotional support. I wasn't expecting any diagnoses other than frazzled caregiver.

    It must be so frustrating and painful to be a self informed person having to struggle with the system before finally getting the diagnosis. But it is not pleasant either having the diagnosis drop out of the blue like a ton of rocks hitting you on the head. Sure for a couple visits the psychologist was pointing out autistic-like traits in my family (based on my descriptions - nobody has been diagnosed) and I briefly wondered about these quirks in myself. But that was an aside as far as I was concerned, certainly not why I was there. So what if I couldn't look him in the face for more than a second.

    So now I am not a frazzled caregiver, I am an autistic frazzled caregiver. Fine! The diagnosis fits! It explains a lot. But I am 69 and what the heck about now? I need to find friends after all this covid isolation. I didn't have a clue before how to make a friend and now I know the reason why but am still clueless. What is the point? And I am still frazzled.
     
    Last edited: Oct 16, 2021
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  2. Tido

    Tido Active Member V.I.P Member

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    Welcome, I'm new here too!

    It'll take you some time to settle in with this new knowledge. Hopefully like many of us, you'll come to love your Autism — or at least parts of it.

    I'm no good at making friends either, but I know that's partly because I'm incredibly particular about who I give my time and energy to. Perhaps you experience similar?

    The point of it is whatever point you assign to it, if any at all. And it's fine to see no point in making friends, you're not right or wrong either way. Maybe you'll find a friend who understands you on a deeper level (perhaps someone else with Autism) and that could make you feel it has meaning and a point.

    It may or may not serve you well to view yourself as an Autistic Frazzled Caregiver (although the name tickles me), is that who you want to be? If it is, great, you're already there! If it's not, then ask yourself who you really are and who you want to be?

    There is a part of you beneath the frazzled caregiver, beneath the Autism, beneath all the judgement you place on yourself. That is the part of yourself to look to, that is the essence of who you are. You exist before all the labels and judgements layered on top of you, nothing can shake that part of yourself. It is inconceivably powerful and it's been right under your nose this whole time :)

    You are wonderful just as you are, you don't need to change anything except that which you want to change, not what anybody else wants to change and not what you feel pressured to change by the standards of others — but by your own measure of who you are and who you want to be — this is all you need to look at.

    Lots of love to you!
     
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  3. Gerald Wilgus

    Gerald Wilgus Well-Known Member

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    Diagnosed at 60, so I had to make my way, like you, without complete understanding the basis of my social deficits. That said, I will give you the same advice I give others about meeting people and making friends . . . . engage in activity groups that you enjoy. It is good practice socializing and you get to meet people with common interests. But, most of all, enjoy the activities.
     
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  4. Shamar

    Shamar Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    Sounds like most of us here. I was diagnosed at age 60. I was surprised, but it explained so much that I decided to run with it, so to speak. Learn about autism, see exactly what flavor of autism you have, and be aware of how it affects you. You can also find out what (if any) comorbidities you may have that go along with the autism. For example I am ADD (no H), anthrophobic, ans alexithymic. And suffer from seasonal depression this time of year because of all the celebration and socializing that I cannot be a part of.
     
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  5. Suzette

    Suzette Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    I self identified at 54. Just a few weeks ago in fact. Just ignore "autisim" for now. Your plate is full caring for another. That alone would make ANYONE a frazzled mess.

    My friend Carolyn, who is the most N.T. person I know and as tough as an army sargant tough, cares for our friend Ginny who is 92. Ginny can get mean and has made stalwart Carolyn cry. Care giving is hard, hard work!

    Can you get someone to help out to give you a break? Is there someone who can help with cleaning and shopping?
    Can you take an hour to soak your feet and eat chocolate? You need to care for you too!
     
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  6. Ronald Zeeman

    Ronald Zeeman Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    We could start our own over sixty group. Welcome to The forum.
     
  7. Thinx

    Thinx Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    Yes, centrally I guess the point is, many or most of us with this condition don't have the typical abilities that enable easy social interaction, hence we find it hard to make friends.

    It's not that you couldn't look at the psychologist, it's that you don't look at anyone much, as normal. This is the type of behaviour difference that interferes with easy social interaction.

    Many of us have a slight processing delay too, this means we don't get the point of remarks immediately, and may be confused, or answer oddly. These differences are not all there are, but these in particular interfere a lot in relating with ease.

    I think the best way I have found is to be in regular contact through group interaction such as interest groups, support groups, social groups, working groups, therapy groups, voluntary work groups etc. Then I gradually get to know some people over time, and make a friend or 2.

    Is there a carer support group the psych can point you towards? Or an interest group you want to try? Who do you care for and what time do you have for yourself?
     
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  8. Ronald Zeeman

    Ronald Zeeman Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    YOUR right clever comebacks are not my forte'. do not like sarcastic remarks.