The intense world ~ probably not just a theory

It’s Friday night, but around here, you’d never know it.  We live in a major city, but thankfully, we were picky chose wisely when we decided to leave our previous apartment/flat and find a new place to live.  Despite the density of the immediately-surrounding population, all is calm, all is bright.

Our apartment, and the property on which it sits, provide a healthy insulating sanctuary.

“Sanctuary” is an interesting word.  For me, it conveys a sense of peace, of relief, of escape.

Escape?  From what?

Why, the outside world, of course.

The term often used, usually half-jokingly, is “hermit”.  But some of us on the Asperger’s/autism spectrum, myself included, take that concept to a whole new level.

It’s not that we’re antisocial.  It’s not that we hate people (although occasionally, I have my days).  It’s not that the “shut-in” status that applies to so many of us is purely voluntarily chosen.

It’s a simple numbers game.  People Like Us are gravely outnumbered by People Not Like Us.  And as everyone knows, the majority rules.  And despite the apparent phenomenon of positive selection of genetic traits, we’re not going to overthrow the ruling majority anytime soon.

Until we can, which I seriously doubt will happen in my lifetime, we live in a world that presents a daily attack on our senses.

The word “attack” is closely associated with aggression and the act of causing pain or discomfort to someone else.  It could be argued that the world at large has this effect on people on the Asperger’s/autism spectrum–not only in one way, but in many ways.  All the ways that are important.

The world is too bright.  Flashing, jittering, attention-grabbing effects pepper every news cast, TV show, movie, and website.  Large, brilliantly-lit LED screens attempt to steal our attention away from the freeways, using our frontage roads as their own personal advertising opportunity.  Stores make efficient use of their space by jamming loads of products together on the shelves and light the way with cheap, mismatched, flickering fluorescent lights overhead, a definition of personal hell for me, encompassing everything I can’t stand in one place.  Even the sun easily becomes overpowering–yes, even with shades in the windows or sunglasses on my face.  Security lights blaze through the night, creating sometimes-false senses of safety, while buzzing and flickering.  City streetlights blaze through our bedroom windows at night, as do our neighbor’s outdoor motion-sensor floodlamps assigned to too sensitive a setting.

The world is too loud.  People talk too loudly, an annoying phenomenon that only amplifies when they’re talking to a person unseen by the rest of us on their mobile phones.  Somehow the presence of the device turns up their own voice’s volume. Everyone seems like they’re shouting.  I’m not always in the clear in my own home, either; my partner has to do much of the housework.  Kitchen sink disposals, vacuum cleaners, and doors slamming create an unpleasant milieu of sonic hell.  Young children holler shrilly, echoing throughout every linoleum-tiled grocery store, mall, or airport terminal.

The world is too rough.  How did wool ever become a clothing material?  What about polyester??  Who dreams this stuff up?  Who thought it was a good idea??  How did percale sheets become the standard?  How did nylons and underwire bras even remain legal?  Don’t even get me started on contemporary shoe styles; high heels (or any heel that lifts the foot at all for non-medical purposes) are abhorrent enough.  Who thought this was a good idea?  Can other people really withstand this?  Can they tolerate it?

The world stinks.  Aftershaves, perfumes, and colognes flood and saturate the air on a frequent basis, usually without warning.  People insist upon slathering themselves in every type of body “care” product, almost all of which are strongly scented.  Restrooms are loaded with knock-you-over air fresheners that are almost worse than the normal effects of body function.  It doesn’t help that I’m (involuntarily) one of Those People who has the nose of a dog in terms of sense of smell.  I can tell when someone doused in perfume has walked across the parking lot within the last 15 minutes.  It lingers for what seems like eternity.  I can’t get away from it if I have to walk through that area.  I shouldn’t have to get away from it if I’m outside, for pete’s sake.  The horrid ridiculous scents get into my nose and make me sneeze.  If this sneezing phenomenon picks up steam before I can escape the environment, it might progress in a snowball effect, and it might even eventually knock me out of any hope of productivity for the rest of the day.  Thankfully, I don’t (yet) experience the headache I’ve heard others mention; I would be really pissed off if I did.

Here’s the interesting part: even if I like the scent, it’s still too overpowering.  There is a such thing as too much of a good thing.  I might like the smell, but I might still have a problem.  Just because it smells good doesn’t mean it’s OK to go wild with it.

But if I don’t like the scent…heaven help the world.  I get extremely irritable.  In fact, it can trigger a bout of complete disgust, even anger.  It’s short-lived, but it’s potent and immediate.  Don’t even get me started on trash dumpsters, especially in the summer.

The world tastes disgusting, at least as far as conventional food is concerned.  I can’t shop at “regular” grocery stores; I have to be one of Those People who shops at the yuppie trendy hipster health food stores, where they sell organic kale chips, flax seed milk, Gogi berry juice, chia seeds, wheatgrass smoothies, and sunflower seed butter.  This is because I can’t stand the overpowering tastes of salt, MSG, artificial flavors, and preservatives that are endlessly added to “regular” food.  (How do people not taste these things?  How can people stand them??)  I can’t stand the sugar added to ketchup or bread (the latter, for me, must be gluten free).  I don’t even like cow’s milk anymore, and ditto for milk chocolate; I don’t even taste the chocolate, just the rotten, rancid milk.  Eggs make me gag.  Conventionally-raised meat tastes and smells disgusting; I can’t even breathe well when it’s being cooked; it fills the air with an invisible grime.  Ugh.

My body can’t stand “regular” food, either.  Red food coloring makes me jittery, worse than caffeine.  Wheat makes me impossibly bipolar, after knocking me out as though I’ve been drugged.  MSG gives me a rip-roaring headache, a feeling of having been punched in the gut, and forces my bowels to pretend that my sphincters don’t exist.  (Sorry for the TMI; I’m sure I’m not alone, and I want to let those people know that they’re not, either.) 🙂

Speaking of disgusting, the world feels disgusting at times.  Humid air feels like an incessant film.  Hot run rays bake me, and cold air penetrates and pierces.  Drizzle is even worse, for that once-ethereal film takes on a physical form and feels greasy to the touch.  When I lived in a northern climate, I despised the salt solutions the crews would cover the roads with.  It dried out my skin and felt all grainy on my hands, a sensation that I could never shake until springtime.  And I’ve never liked to have too strong of a draft of air blowing on me.  I can’t stand stagnant air, either.  Excessive air movement is irritating and can even make me somewhat anxious.  Stagnant air makes me irritable, too, but with more of a restless flavor; it’s like if the air isn’t moving, then I have to create the illusion that it is by my own movements.

The world is too dense, too many.  Traffic sits bumper-to-bumper, backed up for miles on every freeway, every day.  The construction of more strip-malls, apartment complexes, and yardless single-family housing developments threatens to stretch the capacity of our streets to its limits, only adding to the stress of driving to and fro.  It only adds longer lineups at checkout counters, longer wait times for doctors’ appointments or at restaurants, fewer parking spaces, sparser housing availability (and the higher prices that go with it).  People, people, everywhere.  No matter where you go, at what time of day, there are always too many people.

And these people contribute to the ever-growing load of lights, noise, and smells.  These people leave less room to move and breathe freely, to enjoy some space.  These people are additional potential judges and juries of my–everything: appearance, behavior, speech patterns, facial expressions…even the vehicle I drive and the scratches thereon, if we encounter each other outside.  I live in a place that experiences continued explosive growth, and it’s interesting how people will choose to move to a place and then insist that their new place conform to them instead of the other way around.  This of course results in unnecessary change, which is another topic (and pain in the arse) entirely.

I would just like the world to press pause on certain aspects, turn down the gain on some others, and stop a few others altogether.  A complete clamp on strong perfume (especially those in which the carrier alcohol scent is more prominent) would be nice; most places have already universally outlawed smoking, so why not perfume?  It’s the same concept; it causes reactions and catastrophic health effects in (more than) some people, newer research is hinting at their carcinogenicity, it’s offensive to the senses of many, and it’s a common complaint and health hazard.  Bonus: it’s unnecessary.  Nobody absolutely HAS to wear scented products.

I would love to see the world come to its senses and turn down its volume on other sensory aspects as well; not everything has to be so bright, so loud, so compressed, so shiny, so Bling.  Not every food flavor has to “pop” addictively, driven by the addition of flavor enhancers like MSG.  Not every light must be on all the time.  Perhaps LED signage could be required to have (much) dimmer night time settings.  Perhaps it can become considered much more uncouth to talk loudly on a mobile phone indoors.  Maybe society can free itself of its fixation with slathering itself in every lotion, body wash, and other strongly-scented product.  Perhaps grocery and household stores can house scented products in separate rooms, separated by doors whose default position is closed.  Maybe TV sets could come with settings that allow one to neutralize the effect of audio compression, or to dim the flashes and jitters, or to hold the commercials/adverts still.  Kind of like an Adblock Plus for TVs.

I wonder how much of this sensory overload is actually felt by many more people, too?  Perhaps many other people, even non-autistic people, may also find the world overwhelming; it’s quite probable that we don’t have the monopoly on sensory sensitivity.  The difference between “us and them” this time is, we’re aware of our traits, whereas they might not be.

At the very least, this likely provides a case report in favor of the Intense World Theory, which resonates soundly with me.

This means that turning down the volume (in any sense of the word) on the world just might help not only Asperger’s/autistic people, but perhaps many neurotypical people as well.

It’s definitely worth a try, simply because in lands of the free, one group, no matter how small, should not be so constantly inadvertently oppressed by another.

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102 Comments

  1. I’m pretty much a hermit myself. I only leave the house to go to my monthly Dr. Appt or to the grocery store. And only the store when it won’t be crowded. I get super anxious when I’m overloaded. Noise and clutter can make me want to hide in a dark closet. I’m also an empath so I’m really, REALLY affected by the emotions of other people. Online friends is about all I can handle. The world out there doesn’t have much I want right now.
    Did I mention how brilliant your writing is? 💕💖💞💗

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Omg thank you! 😊💘💜. I really appreciate your lovely feedback 🤗

      Hehe half-good-natured-joking here, but there might be something to it, are you sure you’re NT? 😊😊. Because everything you said, I can totally relate to 💞 (If you’re interested, check out my post called “The Coiled Snake” – there’s a search field at the bottom of the page, and if you type “coiled” or “snake”, the post will surely show up 😊); it’s about being an empath–another interesting aspect you and I share 💖

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Coiled Snake, another great post. In total seriousness, watch out for those psychic vampires. In my almost 50 yes on this planet I’ve only run into 2 but they are out there. 1 didn’t even realize they were, the other….Oh yeah, he knew. I still shudder. As to whether I’m actually NT…. I did an ASD test, I got a very low score. I’ve never thought I was even a little autistic but am I NT? I have fibromyalgia and that messes with the body and the ol thinker. Maybe I’m not NT. Maybe I’ve been thinking too black/white…NT/ ASD. I’ve always claimed to be a weirdo so maybe I should go with ND, neurodiversity.
        See what you did, now I to think about stuff…Sigh😘💓

        Liked by 3 people

        1. Yeah! 👏🏼😊. I’m not a specialist in this area or anything, but it takes one to know one, right? 😉💓. There is a subset of Aspie/autistic people who don’t score as such on the assessments 😊. There’s also the possibility of the number of traits you may have, and the strength of those traits. For example, my partner definitely runs a brain “OS” that is sort of a “hybrid”, if you will. He can actually relate fairly well to–and identify with–both NT and ND. And yet, he also can’t completely relate with either one (lol). His best friend was an Aspie, he married an Aspie, and there’s a sharp demarcation between him and the rest of his (extremely NT) family, to the point where, early on in our relationship, I actually asked him if he was adopted lol 😂

          So, who’s to say that you’re not running the same “Aspie/autistic OS”? 😊💖. You may or may not meet the (non-infallible, highly restrictive) diagnostic criteria, per se, but the criteria are imperfect, created by out-of-touch third-party observers who never actually got their info from us, and to this day, hotly debated 😊. In addition to the DSM-based criteria throughout the years, other criteria have also been proposed and studied – I think you might find this fascinating (!) – check out Tony Attwood’s book “The Complete Guide to Asperger’s Syndrome”; it’s got some bothersome terminology, and although it was written in 2007, which makes it a little dated, it’s actually one of the more enlightening and accurate “academic/informational” books I think I’ve ever read. He’s also got some great info on his website, which I’d totally link to but I’m on my mobile and don’t want to lose my “essay” lol 😂

          The answers will come, luv 😘💖💜

          Liked by 1 person

    2. i actually had a crush on ramonas older sister beezus, from the 1988 canadian tv series. the actress that plays her is probably older than i am– the character almost definitely is.

      canadian women in general are pretty irresistible– but there seems to be no biographical information on lori chodos except that she was in a couple roles, and is also a writer. she could be from california just as easily.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Omg I never saw that show but I loved the books! I need to hunt down that show, though 💜💙

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        1. the remake features selena gomez as beezus and joey king as ramona. nothing against either one of them (selena gomez probably does a great job) though i figure by our standards, the 1988 canadian version will be closer to the books in feel. perhaps. im sure that im too good for an old 80s tv series about a girl, but given that we are close to the same age (the girl that plays ramona, and i) i shall watch the first (25-minute) episode on youtube this evening, for old times sake. there were 10 episodes, so it takes longer to watch fawlty towers (which ive done several times.)

          Liked by 1 person

          1. ’80s TV shows were the best 👏🏼😊. The ’90s weren’t so bad, either, having brought us “Daria” and a few other guilty pleasures I can’t bring myself to cop to yet lol 😉❤️. Definitely hunting for the Beezus & Ramona; I have the distinct impression that I’m totally missing out 🌟💜

            Liked by 1 person

          2. “beezus and ramona” is the remake. the 1988 version is simply called ramona, with sarah polley as the title character. again im not against the remake, though id feel remiss if i steered you towards the remake first.

            Liked by 1 person

          3. Thank you for the clarification! My reading comprehension skills suck sometimes lol. I’ll be sure to be on the lookout 😊💙

            Liked by 1 person

          4. oh, this is one of those times when its really not your fault– like earlier today when i double-checked if someone new to coding is about to learn “java” (eesh, not great for beginners) or javascript (an entirely different language, more or less.)

            i would say that javascript is the “ubiquitous” one: heres some javascript from the very page this reply is on:

            if (typeof window.onload != 'function') {
            				window.onload = func;
            			} else {
            				window.onload = function () {
            					oldonload();
            					func();
            				}

            but it has to be said that theres a lot of java out there, too. you cant always be blamed for missing one or two details when the thing youre reading is kind of ambiguous to begin with.

            Liked by 1 person

          5. by the way, looking at that code i just posted, that *appears to be* a closure in javascript. a closure is a bit of fancy o.o.p. footwork that involves a function-in-a-function… and to this day i still dont have a solid use for closures. im a little surprised its part of wordpress 🙂 but if it is, i guess theyre everywhere now. all my functions are simpler than that– including the ones in those graphics demos 🙂

            Liked by 1 person

  2. I definitely have the need for sanctuary in my life.

    Too much noise, especially at work can be overwhelming. I’m always amazed that coworkers with less to do have no respect for those that are trying to get work done, and they will carry on loudly. if I ask them to turn down the volume, I am always made to feel like I’m the one with the problem.

    I’m a nurse and I am always surprised that people don’t realize that for many, decreasing stimulation might be the first step in feeling better. I used to take care of an elderly woman whose family wanted her to adhere to this strict routine. She would complain of having a headache or nausea. I would tell them well how about if we dim the lights and ask her if she would like to lay down, and they always seemed unsettled about that. The elderly woman herself would never ask to lay down, but her symptoms would almost always resolve if she did. I had thought that laying down and dimming the lights would be just common sense in that situation.

    I like perfume some of the time, other times I can be overwhelmed. There was a scent that was popular than I was younger that would instantly give me a headache.

    I used to have an odd combo of sensory triggers…driving in a car + afternoon sun + smell of diesel fuel=headache and nausea. If I would forget my sunglasses then I would just be asking for trouble. I’ve mostly grown out of those headaches.

    Earlier in my marriage, my in laws used to have a tendency to drop by or just call and announce they were coming over. This used to drive me bananas, but I would sometimes be in a panic when my planned downtime would be interrupted, especially if I had to work later in the day.

    I’ve never gotten confirmation from anyone, but I feel I might be on the borderline between Asperger’s and neurotypical.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Omg yes!! I can definitely relate 😊. To practically all of this. Including the sensory-triggered headache/nausea combo you mentioned! Usually I like sun, road traveling, even the smell of diesel fuel and exhaust–but put them together at the wrong time and boom! I felt horrible 💙

      If you’re curious about whether or not you might be Aspergian, please feel free to contact me anytime through the Contact form in the blog’s menu and I would be more than happy to answer any questions you have or give you any support, direction, resources, etc that you like. My window is always open, now and later – anytime 😊😘💞

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  3. ive literally carried a f***ing parasol around before. the one i had was incredibly lightweight, its not like carrying an umbrella in the rain– in fact a bandleaders baton is heavier– except in a gust of wind, obviously.

    now i havent carried one in years, but as much as the sun is a total bastard, the parasol is lovely. id probably not care if it were flowery at this point: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=INj6HPuKJnk although if theres such thing as a manly parasol, i had one. (full disclosure: the fellow i borrowed it from was indeed homosexual.)

    of course it looked like an affectation. i dont care, when it comes to fashion we can get away with murder in my family. grandma was a buyer for a department store. and its a good thing because when it comes to fashion, ive got a whole football team stuck under the porch– and i dont even have a porch.

    incidentally, little britain is about as un-pc as it gets. but david walliams (the *LADY!*) isnt wholly insensitive to transvestites. he wrote a childrens book called “the boy in the dress” which is just as touching as anything judy blume ever wrote, and in a familiar style (i would think) to any judy blume fan. ive read it; id recommend it to any boy who likes putting on “ladies things,” including “executive transvestite” eddie izzard.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That’s awesome! I’d like to get my hands on “The Boy in the Dress” 😊

      Omg, Judy Blume remains one of my favorites to this day!! 👏🏼👏🏼 Which reminds me – I gotta get to Half Price Books (omg my mobile doesn’t know that term yet – it wanted to suggest “Half Price Boom! 🙃) to re-stock my home library with her books lol 😂💓

      Liked by 3 people

      1. Are You There God It’s Me Margaret…O M G!!!! I didn’t think anyone knew about Judy Blume anymore. I remember getting ahold of a copy of Wifey when I spent a weekend at a friend’s house. I totally ditched my friend ( at her own house 😮) to read the book.

        Liked by 2 people

        1. Oh yeah!! 😊❤️. Judy Blume is the bomb 👏🏼👏🏼. I’m on the tail end of Gen X (1977 for me, and my partner is 1970); you’re in good company 😘💚💙

          Like

  4. As I mentioned elsewhere, I use the term “asocial”, which more and more clarifies for both myself and my surroundings, something which beyond “how I like it” has rather become “who I am”.
    And “asocial”, even if sometimes carries some elements of “antisocial”, especially when it comes to the daily assaults on our hypersensitive senses as you so well describe them, is a careful choice of placing myself as an individual, above and before anything “common”, something I could best described as placing my unique neuro-psychology above and before any sociology.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I prefer that term (asocial), too 😊. Antisocial has already been designated to mean a whole different scenario anyway 😊

      If it hasn’t been used yet, I would also like to introduce the term “hyposocial”; meaning “less social, but not devoid of social 😊❤️

      Liked by 2 people

        1. Well damn ❤️. Thank you for looking that up! 😊😊 Back to the drawing board; I’ll/we’ll come up with something 😉💪🏼💚

          Liked by 2 people

          1. Sure thing, and thanks, usually people hate me for finding flaws, but as I came to know you for some time, you are very different, finding value even on a heap of ashes 🙂
            I wish such would be the case with me, but it ain’t…
            Well, I guess I’ll just stick around and leave the positive parts to you :-):-)
            I’m quite comfortable with “asocial”. Been using it for some time now in my academic works, and it seems to be surprisingly well remembered, even though it’s become somewhat overshadowed by “antisocial”. So I’d keep it out in the light, until it regains its well needed status. Wow, humble me 😉

            Liked by 2 people

  5. Perfume, the bass in trucks where you feel it without even hearing the sound, people crowding in my space, moving too slowly, cigarette smoke, wind — and yes! sugar in bread!! I thought I was the only one!! Yuck! ❤

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you so much for your compliment, dear friend! 🙂 I can totally identify with what you said, and you put it beautifully! Thank you for adding your voice – definitely feeling more comfortable and less alone ❤

      Liked by 2 people

  6. I work in the company of people (though not very many) all week, so Friday night til Monday morning is definitely much needed Me time, with only Myself and I for company 😉
    I am sensitive to certain things, but not nearly as much as you are. I have a habit though of holding my breath when passing people on the pavement so I don’t have to smell them…
    Some people, though, have to use scented products. TMI, but for me scented deodorant is a must. I tried unscented, but it’s not enough to combat my natural stink 😉

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Agreed, on all points! 😊. Especially about the scented deodorant thing; I’m the same way; because I’m sensitive, I actually use organic soap for deodorant and I use natural essential oils throughout the day as needed 😳😂💖🌟

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  7. today i laid down everything i know about aspies and suicide. youll find why at this sad post from a friend: https://cervixsays.org/2017/03/23/an-open-letter-to-my-dead-brother-march-2017/#comment-1608

    thats the comment– some details of it will make a lot less sense without the details of the post it replies to.

    i know that sometimes people think theyre right, when its actually very subjective. i know the most scientific and rigorously-defended facts du jour can be disproven with time. needless to say that when commenting on a lost family member, you dont want to spend time on idle speculation. im confident (and i think– i certainly hope, not overly confident) that what i said was both relevant and 99% likely to be accurate. or wouldnt have replied with it. of course i could still be wrong, but i think there were important things there (that *might* even help her and her lost family, or again, i wouldnt say it.)

    theres stuff there i want you to notice. perhaps its an odd request, but if you want to reply to my comment i ask you if you would do that replying *here* instead of there. if you want to reply to her post, thats another matter– use her post to reply to her– and use this post to reply to me, if possible. thank you ❤ this is a special-case request, not a general one.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. oh and uh, if anyones looking for a trigger warning (i ordinarily dont bother with those) theres some pretty saddening, “moderately graphic” talk of methodology, including the one that he used in the post (i talk about that a little in the comment, too.) so obviously im mentioning that here, to be fair.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Wow! What an incredible post, and what an equally-incredible comment 💙 I read everything. My brain is a little fried right now, so I may not have comprehended everything exactly right, but I put everything I had into it 😘

        What stood out to me the most was your compassionate logic. Or logical compassion. Such a rare gem of a quality, and I admire it so much 💜

        What stood out to me next-most was your pinpoint accurate insight. You nailed every good point that could have ever been made.

        And finally, I related to your comment so closely. I felt like you were talking about me too. The only difference is that I know exactly how I would do it, if I felt there was absolutely no other choice, if every other path had been exhausted. It would be painless and completely fail-safe. I guess I’m like the guys in that way 💚

        Thank you so much for sharing this with me, Brother 💞

        As I understand, this is a friend of yours? You two are both lucky to know each other 💜

        Liked by 1 person

        1. thank you for the compliments. and affirming my suspicion that was probably making enough sense 🙂

          “Thank you so much for sharing this with me, Brother”

          youre always welcome, sis ❤

          "this is a friend of yours? You two are both lucky to know each other"

          thats a tricky question to answer. in many ways, she and i hardly know each other. though about 100% of our communication (a significant portion of which was me telling her how special a person you are, actually) is deep and skips any bullshit. ive not heard a reply, so i hope i didnt step on toes.

          i think we do the deceased a disservice (and ourselves one) when in response to their death we put a microscope on the "most recent" events leading up. i suppose thats reasonable in some cases, but in others they spent their whole life trying and finally couldnt go any further.

          someone was saying today that politicians do "nothing" until theres a crisis. all this business of warning signs, of "events leading to" this and that–

          what about the everyday hardships? the things that wear down the soul to its dregs over years? why do we ignore that in every way / shape form?

          i think most of the time, thats what really kills people.

          but– this isnt about a philosophical bone to pick. in this case, with this very unfortunate boy, i believe (and the letter even reflects on the thought) that it was his entire life that killed him, not an event.

          and so this is about justice to him and his character, and about healing for the living and letting go of what i would call "stupid questions" if it werent perfectly natural to wonder.

          lets just say that better questions would likely yield better answers. and since (naturally) that person will always wonder wtf happened– i wanted to offer my (actually really good) theory that a lot of these questions are red herrings.

          the answer is simple enough– its something we can use to put the past trauma a little further in the fast, and let her say "we did what we could with what we knew– and he did everything he could, too."

          because he probably did. i dont think he wouldve given up otherwise. i think we should give him the benefit of the doubt. and i think that will help the living, too.

          i addressed it with all the care and tact i could possibly muster, and i hope it is taken the right way. it might not be my place. but then, if she wants to talk to me then she can.

          i hope that the points i did make i made well enough to do him a service and do her a service too. you and i can think i did good all we like– time will tell.

          its a rough subject, but that "human network" for nds, by nds. we still need it. we should keep talking about it– keep defining it– keep building it.

          someday we may actually save a life, and improve countless others. not arrogance– purpose. purpose doesnt come easy, or without some tries that… well, you just dont get 100% right the first try.

          thanks again, it means a lot.

          Liked by 2 people

          1. I totally agree on so many points, on so many levels 💓

            In a way, I had never consciously considered the Disservice to the Deceased concept. My version of Aspie-brain seeks to know the reasons why behind everything, which jives well (for once lol) with the NT expectations/tendencies during the grieving process. But you’re so right to widen the lens. Just like a meltdown is “never just a (mis-made) sandwich”, the taking of one’s own life is not precipitated by a single event. And it does indeed do the deceased a disservice to assume or to fool oneself into believing otherwise, and to stop there without backtracking further. To assume it was due to one recent event also inadvertently semi-patronizes the deceased because it implies that the person “couldn’t handle” one catalyst event, when actually, they’d been strong their whole lives.

            But nobody wants to go there, because to admit that the person had been suffering long before would be to admit that everyone around them hadn’t been paying sufficient attention.💞

            I love your idea of a Human Network, by NDs, for NDs. That’s awesome! 👏🏼👏🏼👏🏼😊❤️

            Like

          2. “never just a (mis-made) sandwich”

            so well said.

            “the taking of one’s own life is not precipitated by a single event. And it does indeed do the deceased a disservice to assume or to fool oneself into believing otherwise, and to stop there without backtracking further. To assume it was due to one recent event also inadvertently semi-patronizes the deceased because it implies that the person ‘couldn’t handle’ one catalyst event, when actually, they’d been strong their whole lives.”

            exactly, although you put it so well.

            “But nobody wants to go there, because to admit that the person had been suffering long before”

            i dont even think this is about denial. it could be, yes, but i dont think it occurs to people to go back further and stand back and say “actually, it was everything, wasnt it?” too grief-stricken (understandably) or just not accustomed to that big of a picture.

            i dont think its typical for anyone to think on that scale, which isnt to say that its impossible. it just isnt the way things are often done. its not something most people keep handy in their toolbox. i doubt even “we” use it all that often. though i probably feel *sometimes*, that trying to think that way (or not being able to help it) makes our lives more of a challenge.

            Liked by 1 person

          3. Too true 😊. The natural inclination is to look at the immediate past 💙. (And the NT “experts” claim we don’t see the big picture? 😘) 💜

            Liked by 1 person

          4. thats “typical” of almost everyone that belongs to one group or another– to frame things in terms of what the other side “does” or “doesnt do.”

            thats why im the first person to say “wait a minute” when you do a post that generalizes nts. i realize (very intimately and first-hand) that we are not exactly like them– its literally the story of my life! and yet im against making all them out to be the same (even accidentally, or carelessly) just as im against them doing it to us. likewise (as in intentionally likewise, though at the other end in terms of type of argument) there are times when its still useful to make the comparisons. im not *entirely* against it. its just worth being careful about to what degree 🙂 i feel id be remiss if no one kept a lookout on that sort of thing.

            Liked by 2 people

          5. if you go there and look for the reply, youll find a link to a post on a related forum 🙂 now, that link will take you to an imgur link 🙂

            youll find a pic of moi. enjoy 🙂

            Liked by 1 person

          6. youre fucking beautiful. ❤ (im not surprised.) actually that pic could be the *close* relative of my ex-girlfriend from last year. though you look younger. (no really, you do. although she looked *fantastic* for her age.)

            Liked by 1 person

          7. Omg thank you luv!! I wish WP let us reply with photo comments like Facebook does 😊. Then I could upload a more recent pic and you could tell me if you still think that 😉😂💖

            Liked by 1 person

          8. you can upload it to imgur.com and link here.

            im pretty sure all these comments are under a deleted comment, therefore these are probably private. you can check the blog post we are replying to, especially under “private browsing” so that youre not logged in.

            Liked by 1 person

          9. oh look: https://caterina.net/2017/03/08/anti-psychiatry-and-community-care/

            “here are a lot of homeless people on our streets here in San Francisco, and that many of them are clearly mentally ill. ”

            hey! shes using the existence of the problem to imply that the proposed solution (drugs) will help.

            then she says that people in other countries notice the problem like we ignore it (we do) and therefore– we need more drugs!

            except that we already use drugs for these things more than other countries– like, the problem is not UNDERmedication, at all. not on average! but lets have some more of the solution thats already done in a country with an overabundance of symptoms, alright?! stupid flicker co-founder. stupid fucking shills 😦

            Liked by 1 person

          10. Thank you! 😘. I had busted out laughing. I was preparing for the wedding lol 💜

            Like

          11. Awesomesauce ❤️

            I’ve got a couple on Twitter – if you’re on there (?) just search the hashtag #ActuallyAutistpic or #ActuallyAutisticPic; my account on there is under the same name – @TheSilentWave 💞. Might have to scroll down; dozens of people participated in that one, and Laura and I were the ones who started it (lol), so we’re early on 💪🏼💓💓

            Liked by 1 person

          12. Hehe yeah, who knows? It seems to be a thing. Some people on Twitter were talking about it, and I’ve noticed it, for sure, but it’s hard to tell if there’s any documentable correlation 😊💜

            Liked by 1 person

          13. Awww you’re the bestest!! That gave me warm fuzzies inside 😍. I’ll love you forever too, bro 💓💓

            Liked by 1 person

          14. Yeah, NDR is pretty awesome!! She literally lives about 70-some miles away from me 💓💓

            I hope your Aussie friend is doing ok 💐

            Really glad Ginger is fine ❤️

            Omg a hurricane?? ‘Tis the season, isn’t it? 💐💞

            Liked by 1 person

          15. i woke up early! my schedule is so different this morning, its like being in a different world. and my thoughts are on my two most favorite ladies in the world: the one i love and would like to marry and my darling, wonderful sister whom i truly love.

            and i woke with some music… right now im listening to the music i woke up with. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L-IpCQp5Wdw

            when you were nearly ten, phil became the first *contemporary* artist i loved to listen to. i listened to no jacket required as many times as other people listened to the beatles– who i also found about the same time and loved as much.

            ive always been a broad fan of phil and genesis, enjoying a range of his songs and theirs. “inside out” wasnt a favorite then, it was just a song. but musically and in any case, its a favorite now. i love the guitar, the signature drums at the beginning, i *love* phil hes just a lovely person who does lovely music.

            while i was typing this the song finished (i just woke up, and im typing into a tiny comment box, and im groggy and enjoying the music) so i put this on from youtube recommends on the side. i love this song too, and im listening to it now https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c_-cUdmdWgU …i love you so much, laina. you are my dearest most wonderful friend. have a beautiful morning. ❤ thank you for being you.

            Liked by 1 person

          16. i dont know how my supply of spoons is going to hold up through the next couple weeks. ive had my head in a vice for the last few days (/weeks.)

            ive been shedding friends online (and possibly locally too) and its getting harder (everything.) if i tell you a love you a few extra times this week, i want you to know it gives me hope, and you represent hope in my life.

            knowing you guys are out there (texas, canada, australia) is probably the only thing holding me together.

            the funny thing is, im FINE when people let me be me. its when they insist on helping that my life starts to really unravel. i moved closer to my blood relatives a year ago and ive been treading the ocean ever fucking since. do you know what keeps me going?

            go to the bottom of her comment for the question and read my reply: https://cervixsays.org/2017/03/23/an-open-letter-to-my-dead-brother-march-2017/#comment-1619

            i love my sisters (ive got an “adopted family” nt sister here, and you, but in some ways youre closer. shes alright some days) and i love a-6, and i love her daughter (a-1, because shes number 1.)

            and the 3 of you are the closest thing i have to FAMILY. well, “weve” got a brother i know, but i will tell you about him someday. hes friends with that nt sister and hes nt himself (only barely though. believe me…)

            2 sisters, one brother, one queen mum and one queen. and of those 5 people i call my real family, a minimum of 3 are nd like us.

            between you and me, im praying lately. mostly to keep these clueless nts out of my life. not all nts– just the really dangerously stupid ones. im agnostic, but if god wants to protect me from them then i am no snob too good for that! please god, save me from the idiots. i know it sounds hilarious, except i amn’t kidding 😦 i do enjoy the word amn’t though. ammint. sounds a little like dammit. pssh… 😦

            i love you 😦 ❤ shit, im gonna cry now. dont worry love, last year was worse than this and i made it through in one piece. im one stubborn son of a bastard piece of shit, let me tell you. i just hope im not cocky enough to be wrong. ❤

            Liked by 1 person

          17. Oh no! I feel the pain in your voice, my brother 💐💐. How on earth are online people leaving you? You’re too cool! They must be clueless 🌷💞.

            I’m so relieved for you that you have people who love and support you (myself included! Although that wasn’t a plug or ego boost–just an affirmation that I’m definitely one of the people on your side 💜). I’m so sorry you’re going through this and having to deal with this crap. It’s totally unfair and not-fun. It steals an undeserving number of spoons, for sure 💖

            If it makes you feel better, please know that I can’t tell you enough how incredibly honored I am to have you in my life! You’ve made it a much more colorful and happy place to be 💚💙

            Please take extra care of You until this shizz passes. Take extra walks and alone time, if you can. Sleep well, eat well (that’s something I struggle with when I’m down, and unfortunately, it’s one of the biggest factors that can make the situation worse). I know you didn’t ask for advice 💐 but I would feel remiss if I could have given a kind of support that I knew how to give, and didn’t do so ❤️

            We’re a lot alike 💜. I’ve found myself praying, even though I didn’t know who/what I was praying to. Now I take sort of an Einstein approach to spirituality 😊.

            Release the tears, my lovely; better “out” (of you) than “in”. I admire your strength, and I know you’ll make it to sunnier skies eventually. I hope that time comes soon for you 😘

            Please never forget that I’m here for you and I’m sticking with you, walking beside you 💚💙💜💞

            Liked by 1 person

          18. So very sorry dear one! I’ll fix it as soon as I get to a real computer with my brain intact 😘💞🌷

            Like

          19. oh! if youre interested in gnu/linux, write a post about it and we can have a conversation about it on there.

            heres how to do it: start out admitting you dont know a lot about it– that will make you mostly immune to impolite corrections (there are fewer of those on wp anyway.) and then talk about why youre interested, rather than what you know about it.

            Liked by 1 person

          20. Awesome!! Thank you!! 😘 I’ll probably write a post over on Who Loves Kitty about it 😊❤️

            Like

          21. the aussies mum liked a post, which seems to indicate theyre okay. also if you follow gingerocean (shes not the aussie in question, by the way– shes closer to the coast though and tells me theyre alright) theres a lovely wee video of her standing outside in a stiff breeze, on her instagram.

            when i go to instagram, because of the way my browser is setup, it doesnt show pictures. theres only a few links. and one of them goes to a photo. this is because instagram is full of garbagey scripts that i dont want running on my machine. its not user-friendly but it is low-garbage 🙂

            Liked by 1 person

    2. sadly i misunderstood the part where it said he would be 22, because was closer to 14.

      there are 3 places where i said 22 that it ought to say 14. its dumb as fuck that wordpress wont let you edit posts– i can imagine their reasons. i left a quick comment about this but it doesnt really change anything i had to say. 14 years enduring the nt world might as well be 22, in terms of pain.

      when i was 15 i felt 70. when i was 25 i felt 80, and when i was 29 i felt younger than i had in what felt like forever.

      i dont think i ever felt older than i when i was 15. i know i just said i felt 10 years older at 25, but that was a dull, drawn-out 80 years old. when i was 15 it was a very painful, very acute 70. of course, now ive got friends that arent far from that, and it seems young. so to that i say, i meant “70 in 1980s currency.” age is difficult to put to numbers.

      Liked by 2 people

  8. Seize the word, my friend! Take it back 😊. I totally agree, “asocial” is not a bad word–there’s a big difference between the two ❤️

    I hope you are doing well and that you’ve had a chance to recover from the significant moments of last week 😊💞

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Awesome 😊. Sociability is totally overrated anyway ❤️. I mean, interacting in a place where most of the people’s neurotype diverges so drastically from our own reminds me of going to Quebec, Canada (predominantly French-speaking) when I didn’t know French. Walking into a bookstore was like “wow, all these books, and I can’t read any of them. Damn” and it came to a point where I didn’t pick them up anymore because my brain asked, “why bother?” This isn’t nearly as negative a story as it sounds, but the general idea is similar to me 💜

      I consider myself “hyposocial” 😉. I have a couple friends I love to hang out with, and I wish I could more often, but schedules and stuff get in the way. I can also attend group functions if I put on my (very short-lived, like running a 100-meter dash) Social Butterfly Face/Mask lol, but normally I’m just fine on my own, and I hardly ever feel lonely 💙💚

      Like

  9. i know this is an older post now, but its still public.

    a lot of the comments on this page now were private because one of us had deleted the comment they were a reply to. but now theyre all quite visible.

    preferably you would just go through and delete mine. its a job, but i wont trust that deleted post reply trick again.

    im not thrilled that our conversation is now readable by anyone that reads your blog, but its not really your fault or mine. the more of it you delete the happier i will be. particularly the part about what a bad day i was having. i wouldnt have posted that here– and it didnt originally show when i posted it.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Aww I’m sorry that happened! 😞. Sure thing luv! I just got done with a huge exam so I’m a little fried but I’ll get to it ASAP I promise 😘❤️

      Like

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