snip / snap

Attempts to get better on my own rebound with haunting, overpowering, dissociative episodes of guilt and irreality.

Sometimes i think about how easy it would be to reach out, tug and pull life out of my windpipe.

I think about it and it pinches my tearducts as fleeting moments of sober reflection tell me that it will be a waste and a shame and it would be traumatic for people near me, some of whom i’m sure will continue being outraged at just how fucking selfish i am/was.

yet at the same time it’s comforting

Knowing that I really don’t have to deal with any of this if I don’t want to, and nobody can make me live.

And how i could punish the person who cut me off because she couldn’t be arsed anymore.

But then those thoughts lose their gratifying immediacy too.

I feel ashamed as a I flick through the thoughts like catalogued snaps on instagram, bringing back memories of my childhood, of happiness and hope.

I feel ugly, tired, hopeless and destroyed and like there is nothing here for me.

But then I think about my lovely plants, their nursing family huddled on my tiny window sill in my tiny room.

The thought makes me warm and I instantly feel embarrassed. So childish and sentimental.

I think maybe this isn’t the end, but just the beginning.

What if things could be better, what if this moment in my life doesn’t have to just be hospitals, debt, isolation.

I have a good degree, I have work experience in my industry and great feedback.

I have a partner who seems to really love me.

I have friends and comrades, even if I have frozen them out recently some of them still seem to care.

Two days until I go to the clinic.

not even me

just had a #revelation
re why i relentlessly pursue things that compromise my mental abilities, despite the fact my sense of self-worth hinges on a belief that i am good at thinking, and the associated latent belief that i should test the limits of my abilities through learning, analysis, critique and communication of thus formed knowledge.
ie the problem is not whether i am stupid or not, or like finding out just how good i am at thinking or what my scores are or whatever. despite what i constantly hear myself saying out loud, the truth, which somehow slipped from my grasp over the course of a decade, is that i couldn’t give less of a shit about quantifying innate ability and that actually i loathe that impulse and can’t help but associate it with fascism, even in the ‘seemingly innocuous’ manifestations of corporate grad scheme candidate checks and so on.
the problem is that knowledge brings misery, because the world is horrible

and i don’t like thinking about the world because it chills my blood and makes me distrust absolutely every single thing in my life and tear down each thing to the tiniest pieces of meaning that i can manage

because the imagined mass of the unknown unknowns fills me with legitimate paranoia
and seeing as i was conditioned to think of myself as a brain in a vat by my dear parents and all the very expensive very prestigious pedagogical institutions they put me through
i don’t really value anything else about myself, so i have nothing to turn to, no other strategy to cope with the fact that everything is crazy and terrifying
so i pursue an eating disorder i don’t even feel that attached to anymore to fuck myself over and over and over because it is comforting

and it helps me feel less like i am completely totally alone in the world and always have been
which in a way is of course the truth that so many people before me have wrestled with and still had to die at the end of it

but just because billions of ‘real’ men have had to cope with the human condition and some of them had a pretty good theoretical stab at it
doesn’t mean that i don’t want to also have a go, or rather that i feel compelled and driven to look at the things that i don’t understand and that scare me and try to understand them
none of this means i will change any of my behaviours any time soon or that anything will be different

but i thought i would write it out while i have this brief window of not struggling to form sentences and not being ashamed to actively think about my life and even have the impulse to share it with a friend without worrying that i am taking up precious time. /rant
and as an optimistic addendum, i think that as time passed – throwing me at random intervals back and forth to that point when i was 16 and i reached for something better and then got crushed with all the misogyny and immigration and autism ignorance and false assumptions of malice – as time passed, things happened and i started being better (if not always good) at other stuff, like caring about other people and trying to make them like themselves a bit more, which sometimes worked and sometimes gave me a sense of self-worth, and warm feelings of wholeness that i was naturally not afraid of and therefore had no desire to disintegrate into another one of my conspiracies. Because the world is horrible and terrifying and no one is immune from wanting to wrap themselves into something warm and wholesome, not even me.

Quora

Screenshot 2018-05-10 14.27.51.png

Rudolf Nureyev. 1938-1993.

It was a long and unhappy process. 

From the age of 16 until well into my 20s, I ‘fought’ hunger head on. I would restrict as low as I could go, sometimes going for days on nothing but water, juice, coffee and diet coke. I turned my passion for long distance running into a private, tortured ritual. I thought I could out-starve, out-run, out-drug my hunger for good, if only I tried more, pushed harder, felt more pain. My formative years, the entire timeline of what I consider my adolescence is shot through with memories of alienated starvation, surrounded by plentitude, choice and advertising.

I starved, binged and purged my way through final exams at school, three years at art college, and then two years of my English degree. I became a drug addict, a liar and a thief. I also became deeply traumatised and unhappy. The inability to switch off not just the need to eat but also the desire for food, community and joy became a source of shame and horror, like some sort of monstrosity i constantly tried – and failed – to hide from others. It cracked my self-esteem and fractured my personality. For a decade, I got lost in a sort of cognitive time-warp, obsessed with when it all went wrong – the moment I stopped being the good restrictive anorexic and became a bulimic or binge/purge AN subtype mess. I was hospitalised, I got into debt, I lost friends and pushed away everyone who tried to love me or ‘make me fat’. I tried to end it after a month long binge cycle once, on the morning of my nineteenth birthday. It never occurred to me that to beat hunger, eating was necessary.

***

In my final year of University and the few years that followed, I went through a period of partial remission. I graduated, I found real friends, I learned new skills and achieved independence. I am deeply in love with my best friend, an achievement that flies in the face of all the abuse I subjected myself to, all the lies I told myself every day about my essential malice, narcissism and greed.

Today, I restrict only. According to clinical guidelines, I have anorexia nervosa, restrictive subtype, moderate severity. I have my ‘bodycheck’ blog, where I post pictures of my bones that I struggle to process with my hazed, dissociated, dysmorphia-inflected eyes. I found a way to enter a hostile cease-fire with hunger, eating just enough to keep it from making me completely crazy. For over ten years, I fantasized about this moment, the ability to clasp my hands around my thighs and have the fingers meet. To see that number on the scale. To look at a plate of food and say, ‘fuck it’. I am also terrified of what this might mean. I am starting to think my life might end just as it is beginning, just as the tables have turned. It takes more willpower to eat than to reject eating, to want to wake up than wish I die in my sleep. I hope I can recover, but I don’t know how. I hope your life won’t repeat my story. It all really is too short. Eat.

 

Sugar vs Diet Coke

So it just occurred to me that vodkadietcokes never actually talks about diet coke, which is weird cos i think my entire vapid manic running-on-empty-and-constantly-crashing-into-pedestrians existence is just a symptom of Diet Coke’s postmodernist cultural logic jk. BUT today on a forum where I talk to random people about how fun it is to be mentally ill I saw this:

“Some people order like 2 burgers a side of onion rings, a portion of fries and then add on a diet coke. Like what?? This can apply with any good. People go to an all you can eat buffet, totally stuff themselves but get a diet coke. Why? Just why?”

 

So like obviously the OP is just a basic that thinks fat people r stupid, but like the question is asked so often that it got me thinking. I have two main theses:

1) People picking diet over fat/sugary coke [used interchangeably from now on lol] because factors other than calorific value are important to them when making that choice

2) People are increasingly drinking more diet coke even when eating usual junk food basically because Coke told them to.

 

– Coke appear to be changing tactics globally (but so far most effectively across western markets) and pushing their non sugar products, as sales figures show (i.e. in 2017 UK sales of non-sugar Coke caught up w its sugary counterpart for the first time, which is good for Coke cos this April saw a 520m pound / $735m tax slapped on all sugary drinks.

– the hustle is a clear response to increasing regulatory pressure from officials and consumers groups who basically think (with good reason) sugar is the new tobacco i.e. the devil and must get gone. If Coke share this view it follows they have to push their Diet/Zero/Life products harder to survive – as it doesn’t look like they/American Beverage Association can just keep taking regulators to court when there is a public health outcry like they did w NY mayor Bloomberg when he tried to ban supersize Fat Coke servings in 2012, naturally got sued and lost the case, lol. 

– Coke are paranoid about damaging consumer trust (as is everyone). Not long ago Coke got pressed for buying up millions of $$ of (obviously therefore biased) research to pedal it’s sugary drinks and claim that americans as a whole – get this – are focusing too much on counting calories and not enough on exercise. A recent campaign by public health officials and a New York Times exposee resulted in the disbandment of a certain Global Energy Balance Network, a non-profit created by Coke to ‘shift focus away from bad diets’ onto moving around, lest we stop suckling the teat from which evil saccharine fizz drips. This wasn’t great for the brand so now Coca Cola are trying very hard to make the impression they are leading the fight against Fat Coke (incl. raising prices, reducing bottle sizes etc.), bless em.

– Idk if this is something people just say in market research or whether it’s true but the received wisdom is that consumers are becoming smarter and harder to fool/please. Also despite the food/drink industry’s valiant efforts, actual science publishes its peer-reviewed findings on sugar – and these are increasingly damning and publicly available. So even if the average american/brit still eats a lot of crap, it stands to reason they’ve had enough exposure think fat coke is not as attractive a choice as diet cos they associate it with health risks specific to fat coke, such as multiple teeth falling out due to tooth decay in young adults frequently drinking the stuff.

(yes diet coke will do terrible things to you too like make your hair fall out but shhhhh)

Okay so that’s basically the answer – but like I think it’s important to also keep in mind that we’re still talking about sugar – King Sugar, the commodity of empire, slavery and neo-liberal immiseration – and the industry won’t let up without a fight just cos we’re getting a bit fat here in the core economies. There’s a reason why it has been easier for food and drink giants to intimidate ‘developing’ countries attempting to step out of line and do something silly like govern. A notable example is (as ever) Mexico, when in 2001 an attempt to tax non-cane sweeteners (like High Fructose Corn Syrup, key ingredient in Fat Coke, pain and death) resulted in two law suits that saw the Mexican state fork out $58.4 and $37mil to two unconnected US-based transnational corporate interests. In a more recent and grotesque twist, a deep-in-2009-recession Mexico handed over $90.7 million compensation to Cargill Inc. The American TNC successfully used NAFTA rules to ‘level’ that particular playing field, as Mexico paid dearly its attempt to boost domestic sugar industry that at the time estimated to affect some 4 to 5 million Mexican jobs. The move will surely function as a best practice case study for industry for decades to come, especially in the light of uncertainty associated with things like CETA, Brexit and Trump’s trade wars. But all that deserves a separate blog imo. Cheers!

 

Sources:

https://onlinelibrar…1111/jphd.12192

https://www.theguard…a-marion-nestle

https://well.blogs.n…ola-to-disband/

https://www.ft.com/c…d6-00144feab7de

http://www.cityam.co…coca-cola-sales

http://www.thedrum.c…d-strategy-kick

https://www.cnbc.com…-sugar-tax.html

https://corporateeurope.org/sites/default/files/a_spoonful_of_sugar_final.pdf

https://www.italaw.com/cases/223

https://www.italaw.com/sites/default/files/case-documents/ita0133_0.pdf

Free space

I woke up at 5am today because I went to bed early because I was done eating for the day.

I failed to collect my Effexor/Venla prescription so now I’m coming off SNRIs and can barely get out of bed, except to eat some variation of vegetables cooked w water and drenched in hot sauce (I’ve cut back on carbs and sodium because lmao I have actual edema in my hands and it needs to get gone). Also I was kind of politely a dick to my friend who is trying to help me get better cos she sent a few messages reminding me I need to pick up the script and i was literally hashtag triggered, like it made me so angry I started crying wtaf lol. I got this notebook today where i’m trying to like write down my triggers so as I’m sitting up w spinal pain, crying cos my mate was being nice to me and refusing to look for work – despite having made like a tenth of my rent this month so far – and i’m crying into this book trying to like bullet point wtf is up but like i can’t do it, can’t be concise, got no fucking idea why I feel this way. It’s not just the withdrawal, it’s also definitely the eating disorder cos I’m cranky af and I spend more time googling cauliflower rice calories than thinking about anything else in my life rn. I feel completely deranged, so when I finally go to the eating disorder clinic in a few months’ time I should fit right in w all the sad desperate women crawling down corridors in black leggings, angry that their family won’t let them die.

 

tumblr_of01tjxSP01vqfa13o1_1280

ASD diagnosis notes for Dr Joseph, 2016

Deficits in communication and interaction

General I find it extremely difficult talking to new or unfamiliar people, or familiar people that I do not see frequently.

I often find it challenging communicating with familiar people.

I often struggle with understanding my friends and family, and especially communicating complex needs or explaining the motivation behind my actions.

1. Difficulties with conversation (two-way or group):

a. knowing when it is my ‘turn’ to start and especially stop speaking

b. knowing what to say when I am not knowledgable on the topic or interested in it

c. if knowledgeable and/or interested, knowing whether interlocutors are interested in what I have to say

specifically this means: detecting boredom, discerning whether the interlocutor is pressed for time, discerning whether they are able to follow my train of thought. I often assume a familiarity with the subject and race through ideas or concepts too quickly.

d. I often give too much detail (through association, i.e. everything seems equally important to include). This has been described to me as ‘going on detours’

As this is something that has occurred for as long as I can remember being in the social world (since beginning school – before that I was homeschooled and have no siblings), I am self-conscious of it as a possibility. Therefore I can be shy and quiet.

However, with familiar people I tend to experience less anxiety and therefore I tend to behave more or less naturally in conversation. This can lead to confusion, misunderstandings and hurt feelings or damaged relationships.

2. Difficulties with understanding the interlocutor correctly (what my GP described as ‘reading people’)

a. I am intensely aware of eye contact and the expectation to make it.

b. I spend a lot of time in conversation, especially with new people and situations, attempting to assess whether it is okay for me to look away and focus on what I am saying.

c. I do not experience pain with eye contact, but I find myself instantly overwhelmed with ‘data’.

‘Data’ is a flow of new information which I cannot ‘decode’ efficiently enough in the moment. This causes me to lose track of the conversation and my thoughts. I also tend lose track of my body to an extent and especially my facial expressions or movements. i.e. i may start smiling and not be aware that this has happened, which can put the interlocutor off (i.e. ‘wipe that smirk off your face’)

d. I am distracted by attempting to arrange my face and body appropriately, so as to not seem ‘odd’. i was bullied at school for my mannerisms and speech.

e. Acquaintances have in the past commented on an ‘exaggerated’ tone of voice and facial expressions as well as monotone.

f. I often miss do not hear the interlocutor’s words, in favour of sensing a Mood/vibe of the situation. conversely, I can miss the mood/vibe, but remember the content of speech verbatim (and be able to reproduce it accurately later on).

3. Problem with being perceived in a way contrary to my intention, i.e. as romantically interested, ‘forward’, unfriendly, bored or rude

a. I have a range of ‘filters’ that I am able to apply in conversation. these colour my voice and to an extent my facial expressions with an appropriate ‘mood’.

b. Often, especially when comfortable or tired I do not slot in as many filters as may be expected, or use the ‘wrong’ filters. this means my reactions in the conversation may seem contrary to the interlocutor’s expectations and cause confusion or even anger. i.e. my mother has described me as ‘robotic’ and devoid of feeling.

4. Problems with understanding jokes (on cue) and ‘being funny’. There was an episode at boarding school when I was suspended for spilling bleach on the floor of a science lab because I was trying to make my classmates laugh. Equally, in sixth form I have been accused of being deliberately disruptive, when really I was attempting to be accepted, be liked and make my classmates laugh. In effect however I believe my behaviour deteriorated during this period (16-20). See letter from Westminster School re de facto suspension. See report of outburst with therapist.

5. I observe and mimic the humour, mannerisms and lexicon of people (or TV characters, comedians) around me that I consider to be socially successful and funny, in order to avoid being perceived as ’strange’, and scrutinized. This happens consciously but also automatically (which can cause embarrassment and rejection).

6. I have a tendency to miss sexual cues. I have been sexually assaulted when I was at school (I assumed the interaction was ‘friendly’ when it was not). I continued to be particularly vulnerable to predators throughout adolescence. Very recently (December 2015), I was a victim of stalking and harassment by someone I believed to be my friend. The University are aware of this and the perpetrator has been formally cautioned.

repetitive activities, behaviour, interests

1. I struggle with taking on unfamiliar activities, spending time in unfamiliar places, and switching between activities and tasks.

a. I struggle with (sometimes) starting and (especially) stopping familiar activities.

b. I sometimes get ‘fixated’ on tasks, i.e. find it very difficult to stop doing something I am very involved in (even if it is not strictly speaking my interest). This means I tend to focus excessively on a part of a task, rather than on completing the task itself. This causes huge problems with deadlines. This means I struggle with every aspect of my life, especially my academic career, responding to emails, applying for jobs and doing any kind of job where time management is of key importance. When working as a private academic tutor or translator (this has been my only paid occupation), I have spent many more hours preparing or editing than my peers in similar occupations, based on their reports. This means I have less time and energy for other tasks, and therefore avoid them.

c. I perform daily tasks according to the same, fixed mental routines. This enables me to actually complete some of them, i.e. personal hygiene. I have had issues with showers and brushing teeth continuously throughout my life, and I have now developed fixed patterns for executing these tasks in order to minimise the stress and time-expenditure they caused in the past. Taking off my clothes completely is something I find very difficult due to a sensitivity to temperature change. I often sleep in the same clothes that I wore during the day, and change my clothes in phases. If living in an unfamiliar place, my routines will require a degree of modification, and this means my academic and social commitments cannot be prioritised appropriately.

d. I can be somewhat rigid in cohabitation. I often struggle to understand why people do not put things back in their place or perform chores to a minimal standard of consistency. I experience stress when I notice certain trivial changes (even if these have no impact on my activity plans).

e. when I am not fatigued, I enjoy organising and reorganising the space around me. I can get somewhat fixated on that activity however.

NB when fatigued (which is often), i allow clutter to build up. I find it difficult to concentrate on my thoughts when surrounded by clutter. Equally, I find it difficult to work in a ‘sterile’ room or environment, especially if the surfaces of the furniture are light, very smooth and/or reflective. I am easily distracted, and find it difficult to return to task if anything interrupts me. This sometimes leads me to become very distressed, but mostly I unintentionally dissassociate my knowledge that I should care (i.e. about deadline) from my immediate emotions.

f. when playing with other children (preschool > middle school), I invented games and insisted on the rules and premises being honoured. this occasionally caused tension, and as a preschooler I already experienced ‘break ups’ with friends. I wrote a poem to a preschool friend who stopped showing up to play with me.

g. i find it anxiety-inducing to do even ’simple’ familiar things in new ways (i.e. switching to powdered detergent instead of liquid when doing laundry. My partner insisted on the switch, and in effect this meant I began to avoid doing laundry all together). The difficulty for me is about a different set of motor skills involved in the use of powdered detergent (i.e. the balancing of the box, the effort it takes not to spill it, the intensity of the smell and the sensation of the detergent on my skin).

2. Behaviour, general. This is likely to be a short list as I am finding this difficult to visualise, and second-hand observation is necessarily required here. I therefore hope my partner’s testimony will prove more useful here.

a. I really love spinning, swings with a big amplitude, being in a car that is driving very fast, or being on a boat during a storm. I find it incredibly calming and I do not seem to develop nausea as quickly or intensely as others.

b. I repeat certain movements when stressed, to calm down or simply to increase concentration. I pace, shake my head, touch my shoulder (rolling my fingers over the blades over and over again).

c. If comfortable with someone, I can repeat the same words or gestures or jokes with them over and over again. I.e. When watching a video with someone, I can forget to ‘switch around’ my responses/remarks so that they appear truly spontaneous, resulting in me making the exact same comments in response to exact same cues in the video.

d. As a child – strong attachment to parts of toys, i.e. playing with the washing tag rather than the bunny. I do not remember lining my own toys up, but I lined up other people’s possessions.

e. I enjoy watching certain things move. I love watching cars pass. I can spend a long time staring out of the window of a moving car and attending to the relative motion between cars on a highway, now shrinking, now growing. I enjoy conversations about the technical properties of cars if these help me understand the particularity of their movement. I enjoy watching marine animals swim.

3. I have always had very strong interests, which I am compelled to honour. These bring me great joy and purpose, but there is a strong sense in which this drive has also proven to be obstructive. I tend to get very absorbed in things I am interested in, but this does not necessarily mean I will be able to work to deadline (although on occasion I produce work of a very high standard at rapid pace).

a. my family have often commented that if I develop an interest in something I tend to ‘learn everything about it’. This has been the case for as long as I can remember, i.e. as a preschooler I had a very strong interest in dogs which lasted for years, and was able to recite information about all the breeds and subtypes in the books which I had. I intensely wanted to work with dogs, but was forced to abandon this due to pet allergies. I enjoyed teaching sympathetic adults about dogs, and devised lesson plans for my mother’s friend.

b. intense interests alienated me at school as they did not match up with the interests, hobbies and fashions of my peers.

c. academically, difficulty with restricted/circumscribed interests meant that I received grades at both extremes, as some assignments I was able to excel on, leaving me no time to even begin some of the others.

d. my interests are part of my daily routine, and being unable to honour them throws off my routine completely. My sense of time’s passage (this is something my mother has said has been the case since childhood) appears to be impaired, and this is magnified when I am involved in pursuing an interest. I get ‘lost’ in the few activities that capture my attention, and do not require breaks. This means I miss meal times, go to bed many hours later than partner of family, and/or I forget to get up to urinate until I am in a significant amount of pain. Intense interests interfere with my other plans or duties. I have very limited energy and as mentioned before struggle with fatigue, and I tend to invest so much time in my interests that I am completely unable to switch to deadline-related work.

Additional material

1. planning and organisation – experience overwhelming difficulties.

a. through my BA degree, I handed most pieces of work in late, and/or incomplete. With certain modules I did not have time to revise/complete coursework at all, despite working very hard generally. This caused my mental health to deteriorate (I became anxious and depressed, my self-esteem suffered, I further withdrew socially).

b. my grades and feedback oscillated between poor to outstanding. I received very few ‘average’ grades.

c. struggle knowing when/if/how to ask for help. Even if I should ask for help, I still delay doing so. I am unsure why this happens.

d. can only use electronic software (not paper lists) to keep track of what I do. I forget to check notepads, I cannot read my own handwriting, I get overly attached to one notepad and when it runs out cannot incorporate a new one into my routine, meaning I lose it instantly.

e. throughout my degree I have had almost every single piece of work formally extended. Disability Services recommended me for flexible deadlines and a separate examination room (shared with no more than 5 people, if not entirely on my own). This accommodation made an enormous difference, I believe this enabled me to graduate and attain my degree. I have dropped out of a BA before due to an inability to cope with deadlines and ask for help. I still struggle asking for formal help or accommodation, and struggle with composing emails that inform my University of my difficulties. I often am not aware that I am struggling, and when I am aware, I do not know how to go about communicating this.

2. Struggle with /a special relationship to change

a. I regularly miss bus connections and trains if the planned route changes even slightly.

b. I easily lose things that are ‘misplaced’ out of familiar context, even if they are in the same room. I misplace my own things regularly, i.e. when I do not have the energy to take all the necessary steps to deconstruct clutter.

c. I get lost if my walking route is altered / if the environment has been modified slightly (i.e. different shop fronts can disorient me totally)

d. I wear the same clothes over and over. I was not aware of this until peers at school began to comment negatively.

e. my mental health and functioning deteriorate when sudden change to my routine is introduced. I suffered an intense and sudden relapse in binge/purging behaviour in December 2013, after moving back to Russia for a few weeks over the holidays, and forced to adjust my schedule to that of my parents (i.e. lunch is their ‘sit down’ meal, my usual ‘sit down’ meal is dinner). My relationship with my parents was fine at this point.

f. I am able to build new routines to adapt to change, but I struggle with externally imposed schedules and routines. I am often told I am uncooperative, uncommunicative, avoidant and stubborn.

g. I don’t recognise people ‘out of context’ unless I make a specific effort to remember them.

3. Meltdowns and self-injury:

a. when faced with strong emotions or frustration (usually over something fairly trivial), or failure with communication.

b. i experience a powerful drive to hit or bang my head.

c. head banging is one of my earliest memories (c. 5-6 years old).

d. i experience a massive release and soon after a meltdown my functioning is partially restored / ‘reset’.

e. however they are often followed by headaches or migraines.

4. Ongoing anxiety and bouts of depression. Can have ‘extreme’ moods, very intense and overwhelming feelings, but otherwise (normally) emotionally ‘numb’, with very limited insight into naming ‘middle of the road’ emotions.

5. Insomnia/issues with sleep (since childhood):

a. I would struggle with going to sleep if allowed to read for an hour before bed, and would be disciplined as I attempted to read with the light on. I was obsessive with my books and took them to bed as well as to mealtimes and beyond.

b. I go through period of sleeping only 4-5 hours a night. When this happens, I feel extremely unwell.

6. Motor skills and proprioception problems:

a. I have a series of early memories involved with being disciplined for breaking and dropping things too often. My mother referred to me as ‘pathological’ and ‘abnormal’ during those disciplinary episodes.

b. I frequently drop things or walk into objects or walls.

c. I often cannot feel my body, especially my limbs. I press my body into sharp corners to ‘retrieve’ the sense of my boundaries.

d. I have poor handwriting. I write very slowly, and therefore almost exclusively use the keyboard for notetaking and communication.

e. I had poor balance as a child, but I practiced certain sports (skiiing, fencing) to improve.

f. I have been described as sitting in ‘twisted’ positions and having ‘bad’ and ‘odd’ posture. I attribute sitting in odd positions to a ten.

g. As a child, I regularly injured myself through clumsiness.

7. Some difficulty grasping verbal instructions:

a. Comprehending/remembering verbal directions, understanding how to do new tasks and chores after a verbal explanation).

a. I was disciplined and punished frequently during childhood into adolescence for failing to do chores appropriately, i.e. would jumble simple steps of an instruction set (i.e. when washing the floor) or skip steps entirely.

8. Struggle with information overload & sound:

a. Cannot ‘filter out’ or ‘tune down’ voices and noises to a degree that allows me to follow conversation/a lecture/a film. constantly asking other people to be quiet). Prefer subtitles but tend to only use these in private because of worries about social perception.

b. Struggle to understand song lyrics

c. Information overload can cause crying, confusion, screaming, loss of speech and self-injury

9. My sense of time appears impaired

Preschool

1. Restricted interests:

a. I played board games (Monopoly) and table top games against myself.

b. I enjoyed learning facts from books about subjects such as animal food chains, Greek mythology, Tibet.

c. I devised intricate imaginary worlds, many of them, with detailed rules and environments, populated by imaginary species, all of which enjoyed their own properties and characteristics.

d. I perceived the world as intensely animated. I spoke to trees in (non-verbal) ‘tree’ language by humming and touching their bark. I imitated dogs’ barking (I can still imitate dogs and some birds very persuasively).

e. Overwhelming interest in dogs.

f. I collected animal figurines of a particular brand avidly and did not have interest in other types of animal figurines or small toys. Every Saturday my father would bring me a small figurine and I became very distressed if this did not happen.

g. When gifted Barbie dolls, I spent more time organizing and categorizing their clothes and items than making up stories. I do not remember a single pretend story line concerning the Barbies, although I was imaginative in other senses cf (c).

2. Play:

a. I was capable of ‘pretend play’ if I invented the game and the rules.

b. My childhood friend’s mother still recites anecdotes of my controlling nature with respect to her son.

c. When I was 6 I was introduced to a (different) family friend (then aged 10). She showed me her things, including a big shelf of nail polish bottles. Without any prompting, I lined up her many nail polish bottles and organized them according to colour. It was fun.

Primary school

1. General:

a. I was homeschooled until I was 7. I started school in September 1998, and turned 8 that December.

b. I was hyperactive and fidgety, and also constantly felt exhausted.

c. I was ‘out of touch’ with my feelings and needs. I struggled to go to know when I was sleepy or hungry. My mother had to put a lot of effort daily into putting me to bed and ensuring I am not reading instead of sleeping.

d. My mother recalls a doctor remarking that I presented as untypically ‘stoic’ (i.e. never complained or asked for accommodations) during very frequent and severe bouts of flu/bronchitis as a child.

2. Friends/play/restricted interests:

a. (This continues into secondary school) played video games for hours. I socialised with neighbourhood boys on that basis. I did not socialise with girls as we had less things in common.

b. I was initially excluded from games by other children.

c. I was accepted by the boys after bringing in my collection of Pokemon cards and demonstrating my knowledge and interest.

Secondary school (general)

1. I moved to the UK in 2002 and enrolled at a single sex boarding school

2. The pastoral staff had to introduce me to the concept of other people’s ‘personal space’ and explain repeatedly that sitting ‘too close’ to people is a problem.

3. I have been repeatedly described as ‘staring’ at other kids.

4. I was bullied in year 7-9 and excluded

5. I developed friendships with one person at a time, usually someone considered ‘weird’ but not an outcast. These friendships were intense but only lasted a few months at most.

6. I took up long distance running to avoid competition and humiliation in PE.

7. I stabbed my wrist with a knife (once) during a meltdown in 2005 after another episode of rejection.

8. I am a survivor of a non-consensual sex episode in sixth form, perpetrated by someone I thought of as a ‘friend’.

#ASD #autism #autismdiagnosis #neuroticturn

on quitting #codependency

*Before leaving*
Imagining conversations
buying favourite foods, cooking better meals, cleaning house for them
going to events despite being exhausted and sad to not be called boring and blamed for abandoning them or making them feel alone
tempering my opinions and thoughts to avoid put downs and silent treatment / passive aggression
obsessively checking phone
knowing not replying quickly will have negative and punitive repercussions
suffering intense anxiety when they arbitrarily don’t reply, assuming i have done something wrong but not knowing what it is
being too embarrassed to ask friends if they know what i may have done wrong, worried they will label relationship abusive or me as victim
breaking down when insulted or manipulated or falsely accused, then being ignored even when pleading for some conversation or affection or closure in the future, in their own time
being unable to function (pursue study, look for work, meet friends or enjoy meetings) until closure is given
mistaking ‘crumbs’ for hope
constantly feeling like i’m messy, dirty, clumsy
being told to shower after coming home, that the lounge is a mess, rolled eyes when i knock into furniture
treating housework as a way to buy kindness and affirmation
being ignored intellectually
being told my intellectual or political ideas or pursuits are not my own, consequence of spending too much time with other individuals
being told i am ‘part of the problem’ re their own extreme unhappiness
refusing to seek help
refusing to care for me when in crisis but acting like they are my primary carer and therefore entitled to private emotional information and especially my movements/whereabouts
constant checking up when i’m away
constantly ignoring me or being emotionally unavailable when we are physically together
refusing to explain why the above is the case
not admitting it is a pattern
ignoring my unhappiness re patterns and agony re future
telling me we will talk later but not bringing issue up later themselves
knowing i have extreme anxiety wrt lack of closure
acting like i am in the way and encroaching on their energy and time
when i shared a suicidal thought, shutting me out, refusing to be in the same room, telling me i triggered an anxiety attack
punishing me with silent treatment after i reach out to someone else
*Depression *
Sinking into rock bottom levels of self-esteem
Prolonged, daily feelings of hopelessness
Inability to imagine a better future or a future at all
Oscillating between numbness, extreme sadness and being acutely distraught
Normal thought patterns disrupted and replaced by rumination on relationship
Inability to think
unexplained crying at work and home
v low appetite
loss of interest in previously enjoyed activities
suicidal ideation
planning suicide
*Dissociation*
chronic feeling of being not present in the moment
disrupted ability to function in the ‘real’ world
inability to concentrate on academic work or even consider it as of personal importance (in huge contrast to the top priority it held upon enrolment)
feelings of amnesia re past life
overwhelming feelings of being nothing / of no value or potential or achievement
*Confusion*
Constantly trying to see situation frm their perspective, to get them to take some responsibility for hurtful or harmful actions, even at risk of being mistreated after
asking for my needs to be met but also silencing myself
self-harming after being psychologically hurt
*Isolation*
Not telling friends about abusive episodes because of embarrassment, feelings of personal failure and shame
Checking out of friendships out of fear of abandonment accusations
*Distance*
When I started introducing distance – not sharing my thoughts and plans, I did so because I knew what I would share would be twisted and used against me (logistics only example)
breaking isolation – reaching out to other people
desperately missing them
brutally rejected when attempting to share feelings thoughts desires
*Fear*
Fear they will end it
What if they will use my immigration status to exert control, coerce me into communicating
*Aftermath*
drastic self harm
alcoholism
substance abuse
alienation from everyone i know
i wanna hit the ground
im so sorry
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/health/3077662.stm
#suicide #abuse #emotionalabuse #domesticviolence #dissociativeidentitydisorder #dissociation #marriage #suicidal
.