I have been questioning: Am I really autistic?
Part of me clings to it like a banner that explains who we are. Part of me says, ‘No, you’re not autistic at all, Crystal. You’re just seriously traumatized.’ Part of me asks, ‘Is that the same thing?’
I know autism is complex. I know it’s not cool to claim to be something I’m not, too. Let’s examine this together, shall we?
Signs of Autism include:
- Avoiding eye contact.
- Delayed speech and communication skills.
- Reliance on rules and routines.
- Being upset by relatively minor changes.
- Unexpected reactions to sounds, tastes, sights, touch and smells.
- Difficulty understanding other people’s emotions.
- Learning disability.
- Connection problems.
- Prefers to play or be alone.
- Fails to respond to normal social interactions.
- Cuddle rejection.
- Sensitivity to emotions.
- Unusually intense emotional reactions compared to peers.
- Fixation on particular ideas/subjects.
- Difficulty processing physical sensations.
I would say that most of these describe me, if not all of them. I definitely am guilty of playing one song (or one album) on repeat until literally everyone who knows me hates that music. I definitely battle with depression, especially since no one understands me and the way I feel about topics. I do not like to be touched in general, though I have trauma reasons for that. I am ultra-sensitive to my environment and the perceived emotions of others (if I am able to actually perceive them. Usually, I have no idea what’s happening unless someone tells me so.) I definitely prefer to be alone in my only little world – auterspace, as I call it. I find conversations with peers boring and unable to enrich my existence most of the time. I hate crowds and small spaces. Uncomfortable clothes really don’t make my day any easier to handle, either. I live my life by lots and lots of rules because I do not understand neurotypical people at all. I require a routine to function and the less clutter in my space, the better.
I definitely talk about myself too much. I remember when I was sixteen or so, holding a conversation online with someone and they told me that I found it easy to talk about myself. They also said it wasn’t necessarily a bad thing, either. I tried to stop talking about myself. I thought it was a bad thing and that I shouldn’t do it, so I tried instead to ask questions of other people and dig into their personal lives for details to make some sort of mental picture of who they are. I asked these kinds of questions of hundreds of people, filling my precious brain space with irrelevant details of many, many human beings. I feel now I’d have been better off getting to know that many cats, instead.
I took it to the extreme, trying to become selfless in this little world I am part of from my own perception. I lost sight of myself and who I should be, pursuing being the greatest best friend or acquaintance I could be to far too many people. It is better to have a few friends that one spends a lot of time investing in than a bunch of acquaintances… that is, until your friends get charmed by a psychopath and ditch you, telling you, ‘You know what you did!’ and never elaborating.
Yeah, okay. I know what you did, too. You abandoned me because a man told you something you believed. I bet it isn’t even true. I bet you just decided to believe the worst of me. Unless it’s something I did to you, Alex. Is it? Did I do something wrong? What was it? How can I improve as a friend if no one tells me how I fail? I know what I did, sure. I know what you did, too.
You criticized me. You told me I was only lovable one certain way. You inferred I was the backup if your wife ever died. Sorry, I don’t want to be the backup. I want to be someone’s passion. I want to be someone’s love interest without competition. I want to be loved. For whoever I am today, whoever I was yesterday, and whoever I might be tomorrow. There is no such thing. I know that now.
Nobody loves like I love. I accept what I am told until it is contradicted, and then I call people out on their bullshit. They think because I don’t fact check them that their lies will go unnoticed forever. This is not the case, not when my brain is functioning.
What lies did you believe, Alex? What lies will you believe tomorrow? What did I do to deserve to be alienated from the one thing I believed in: our friendship? The truth is, I didn’t do anything. I didn’t do anything abnormal or out of the ordinary for me and the way I operate. The truth is you decided to take offense to something that is normal to me and has not changed in decades. I know that now.
Good for you.
I hope it enriches your life to be without me. I hope that you feel so much better, now that you exiled me and have embraced a psychopath instead. I’m so glad you can discern for yourself truth from falsehoods. I am so glad you have decided I am not enough, like every other fucking person on planet Earth. Good for you.
I hope you understand when I tell you that the woman who was your friend is dead. She exists no more.
Tomorrow, I get a new phone number. Only one person will have this phone number and they aren’t even a friend. It’s for business only. I wonder what you will do in five years, ten years, when you realize that I did nothing wrong — and if I did, I don’t understand it at all because you didn’t explain it to me.
I hope you can live with yourself that long. I can’t. That’s why I’m killing off that woman and creating a new one.
And just to make it clear: you telling me that I was becoming unattractive because I was meeting my weight loss goals is completely out of line. You are a married man and you are not in my romantic sphere because you are a married man. You were supposed to be my fucking friend.
I have come to the decision that men and women cannot be friends because men do not know what is appropriate. Women may also not know, but I myself know. I know it was platonic and always meant to be that way. I honored your union with your wife. She is the only reason I ever got close to you anyway. You are completely devoted to her, as you should be, and I love love. I loved watching the two of you love each other. I tried to give you a new perspective when you were failing to love your wife. My perspective is limited to my own set of experiences. You wish to control your wife, which is not love.
Regardless, the point is moot. You should choose your reality. Mine? It no longer includes anyone from that city. Enjoy life, if you can. Enjoy that cushy career I helped you launch yourself into by believing in you while I lose my entire livelihood thanks to that psychopath you believe in.
Thanks for opening my eyes.