Today I’m going to talk about something that is a bit of a tough subject… Autism..
Picture this, you’ve been told for 20 years that the only issue you have in life is anxiety and it can be cured by telling a qualified professional (5 to be exact) your most private information. Then after years of this you’re told the reason you’re not getting any better is because you’re not trying hard enough or listening to what the professionals are telling you to do, so medication will fix you.
This medication reacts badly to your body and leaves you in A&E so now you have no choice but to accept you’ll have anxiety forever and it’s your fault for not doing as much as you could’ve done.
Then one day your doctor tells you that you might have a mental condition which would explain everything, and anyone you’ve ever seen who should’ve picked up on it didn’t, and it isn’t your fault at all and can’t be cured anyway…
Well that’s what happened to me, and it probably sounds over dramatic but I’m glad that I finally have an answer, because now I can stop blaming myself, stop wanting to end my life and stop feeling like I’m a burden, plus I now have answers!
All the signs were there really…
From the age of 7 I had panic attacks every morning and every night. I was sick so often that I had to go to hospital to see specialists, who tested me and decided that it was all in my head, but still they didn’t suggest autism.
Age 10 everyone that I was friends with had some type of autism or mental issue, I found it difficult to talk to any other kids as they didn’t understand me.
Then by the age of 12 I had to see 2 psychologists and I couldn’t look people in the eye, I also lashed out and physically attacked people for no reason, but still no mention of autism.
13, I finally learnt how to tie a shoe, use a knife and ride a bike but still couldn’t tie my hair or blow my nose, despite being shown how 100 times.
By the age of 14 I couldn’t sleep anywhere other than in my mum’s bed, and if I couldn’t sleep with her I would have panic attacks and breakdowns. This meant that I couldn’t go to sleepovers or holidays or even have friends sleep over.
16, I still didn’t go to parties or have many real friends, I was recluse and spent most of my time online. I’d never even considered the idea of sex or even kissing someone, it actually terrified and confused me.
By 18 I was back in therapy yet again, on medication for a short amount of time. I now couldn’t get busses or trains, couldn’t take driving lessons, couldn’t go to university or even get a job because of my body just feeling like I’d die or something bad would happen if I did.
Now I’m 20 and told by my doctor that I could have some type of autism but won’t be able to get an official diagnosis for 2 years. Anyone that I’ve told about the possibility of me having autism won’t take it seriously because it’s taken so long for any medical professional to even suggest it…
I’m very much aware that so many others have autism and most have it a lot worse than me, quite a few of the people I’ve grown up with do!
I really do consider myself lucky that I don’t have a very bad case of autism or anything worse, but maybe if I’d known sooner I could’ve taken the necessary steps to finding ways to work around my autism or at least not blamed myself all this time and wasted so long on therapy.
Obviously it affects everyone differently as everyone is different and currently it makes me say things or do things that I really did consider normal all this time and I didn’t really notice that I could be making others uncomfortable or confused and sometimes people may assume that I’m being rude, but I honestly don’t mean to make anyone feel that way! I’m also still a very picky eater, I like to cut up all my food before I eat it because I hate using knives as it took me so long to learn how. I still don’t understand most people’s reactions to things and can be very strongly opinionated and get worked up or upset over nothing.
A lot of the time when I don’t know something I’ll ask, even if it’s considered a personal question, because in the moment it doesn’t seem wrong to do until someone tells me “you can’t ask that!” Or I’ll make a joke and people will tell me that it isn’t funny. I can also get in a really bad mood really easily and take it out on others but I try to keep it under control as much as I can and would love to see someone who can help me learn how to do that.
It’s still early days since I saw my doctor and got the news, so I guess we’ll see where life takes me from here and what new things come to light. I don’t want anyone to treat me differently or to think that I’m a different person, because I’m the same person that I’ve always been, and I’m not the only person to be diagnosed so much later in life. (It’s actually becoming more and more common!)
Thanks for reading, I know it was a little bit different to what I usually post but I felt like I just needed to get it out there.
Thank You so much for being so supportive when I posted about this on my Instagram a few weeks ago. It really does mean the world to me!
See you guys in a few days for the start of Blogmas!!
Best wishes ~ Becca x