I have Aspergers, ADD/ADHD, Sensory Issues and Food Aversions.
I plan on getting my “real diagnosis” once I have insurance again.
I’ve thought I’ve had these for a while now (some longer than others), but I’ve always been afraid to come out and say it. People can be incredibly mean and judgmental… I also keep second guessing myself (maybe you’re just crazy?), and there’s a bit of denial too.
For as long as I can remember, I had food aversions. Like sitting at the dinner table for HOURS because I couldn’t make myself eat the spaghetti my Mom made because it had onions in it (I still can’t eat onions). I can’t eat chicken off a bone (after it’s been cut off and I’ve dissected it, I can eat it, but like chicken wings – nope, isn’t going to happen…). I LOVE the taste of fruit/fruit juice, but most of their textures, I can’t stand. Like Bananas, oranges, soft grapes, pears, plums…. pretty much anything but watermelon and apples… and even then, I’m picky about those too. Eventually I did figure out that it was the texture of foods that I didn’t like… but there were some foods I just don’t like the taste of either.
Then when I met my husband, he gave me a name/phrase for the things I didn’t like that weren’t over texture… I also have “little kid taste buds”. 😉 I don’t like wine, beer or coffee… you know, adult things. lol
But I also have just texture issues that have nothing to do with food. Like if I get something sticky gets on my hands I need to wash them immediately. I can’t use lotion, going to the beach sucks for me. It’s not so bad while I’m there, but if I can’t rinse off and change before I leave, the feeling of the gritty sand and the sticky salt water on me drives me crazy. I don’t like wearing pants in general unless they’re lightweight PJ pants. lol Or socks with the stitching in the toe, but I don’t mind wearing toe socks!! lol
I have Aspergers. I just always thought I was weird… “quirky”. I never really fit in with any particular group of kids. I’d find one or two people I liked and hung out with them. I used to think the reason I didn’t have many friends was due to moving around so much. I went to a different school every year starting in 8th grade (I moved in with my Aunt and Uncle and they are in the Air Force). I have a hard time keeping relationships. It’s not that I don’t want them! If anything, I get depressed over not having friends, but when I go looking for them… I have a hard time finding others like me. I try to make friends anyway, and try to find common ground, but eventually it gets too hard for me to keep up the friendship and I end up sabotaging it. I stop talking to them, then I feel bad for not talking to them for so long, so I continue to NOT talk to them. Even when I find people who ARE like me, I’m so drained from personal issues (like migraines, TMJ, Lower back pain, fibromyalgia…) and taking care of my three kids (two with Autism and a baby) that by the end of the day when I CAN talk to them, I don’t want to. Well… I “want” to, but end up zoning out watching a movie.
Movies/TV/Books are really the only way I can zone out and just not think for a while. Because I have ADD/ADHD, I have a really hard time NOT thinking about something. I’m usually thinking about quite a few things at a time, and when it’s really bad I can’t focus on anything, let alone the MANY things going through my brain. Which is also why it’s really hard for me to write. I actually write better than I talk… I have a hard time staying on subject when I’m speaking… I go off on tangents then forget what I’m talking about. But when I’m writing, I’m able to go back and reread what I wrote, so I can continue talking about what I need to. Or go back and delete a bunch of text that I thought was important, but really wasn’t (can’t do that in person). I often get SO distracted by everything else going on around me, I can’t focus long enough to write something. Which is also the reason I have a hard time finishing anything. My Aunt called it her “but first syndrome”.
I should do the dishes, but first, let me pick up these toys… but first I should pick up the food the boys dropped, but first, I need to get a trash bag… goes to the kitchen, but first I should make the kids their drinks, but first I need to go to the bathroom, I didn’t realize how bad I had to go, but first, look at all these dishes, I need to do these first. lol So, I DO end up getting things done, but probably not as much as I would if I could focus on just one thing at a time.
Having all of these has been hard. Especially because I didn’t understand why I was the way I was or why I did the things I did, until recently. I would look back at my life and not understand. Why did I have such a hard time making and keeping friends? Why did I make such bad decisions sooo often? Why did I have such bad relationships with my family? Why am I so emotional or really easy to anger? Why can’t I get good grades in school? Why am I SUCH a picky eater?!?!
There are so many aspects to my life that took me a lot longer to realize and work on… even before I realized I have ADD/ADHD and Aspergers. That if I had known why I did the things I did when I was younger, I might have had a completely different life. Better relationships… Finished college…
Although it does make me sad sometimes, there’s nothing I can do about it now.
Now I’m focusing on learning as much as I can so I can continue to better understand myself and really my kids. Although they don’t have the SAME problems I do, I’m understanding why THEY are the way they are… or why they do the things they do, because I better understand myself.
These are just a FEW of the problems I have and have faced… to give you an idea of how important it is to talk about family history and to learn and understand. Even IF my family had figured out I was different than other girls my age and had me tested, I probably wouldn’t have gotten a diagnosis. Even today women are still not getting the diagnosis they need. All because we don’t show the same “signs and symptoms” as our male counterparts exhibit or because we are better at learning to mimic “normal” behaviors.
That and on my mom’s side, “you need to go to therapy” was an insult they used often, not a helpful idea. We didn’t talk about mental health or genetic “problems”. So, even if someone in my family knew someone might have had a genetic disorder, no one would talk about it and we would deny it until the day we died.
I’m trying to break generational curses and trying to better my family. 🙂 And although officially I don’t have a diagnosis… I’m not going to be afraid or ashamed to say it. I have Aspergers, ADD/ADHD, Sensory Issues and Food Aversions… just because my Aspergers doesn’t look like yours, doesn’t mean I don’t have it. Just because I can make eye contact, have a conversation, go (back) to college, get married and have kids… doesn’t mean that I don’t have it.
Just because I’m a woman… doesn’t mean I can’t be Autistic.