Well, I got “tested” and this other psychologist tells me that except for “minor memory issues” (MINOR? Really?) I score “average to amazing” on those tests he gave me. Then he looked through that personality profile and told me I view myself differently than others view me, because I have a much darker viewpoint about myself. Plus, why am I so hostile and suspicious of people? This prompted me to send him all my files I saved from last year, from my last job.
And before we even started testing, he informed me no one gets diagnosed as ASD as an adult, that it’s always caught in childhood.
Well, I call bullshit.
He’s a really nice guy, but he isn’t on the social media groups for ASD women that I am on, and he’s not the one reading everyone’s posts and comments, and he’s not feeling that finally — finally! — there is a group of people with the same hang-ups, issues, and behaviors. There is no lightbulb moment for him, no sense of “Oh my god, you do that too?!” My experience in these groups, and having a sense of self-awakening reading all the questions and comments, arguments and agreements, is proof that there are a lot of adults with ASD (or other syndromes) that were missed when they were children. And they’re all having problems with their lives because the status fucking quo states that they can’t possibly have ASD, and for some of them, no one will diagnose them.
Then I was thinking, what if all this was evidence? What about the questions people ask? Aren’t questions that you ask about yourself enlightening in some way? What about when you answer someone’s question? You’re basing that on what you experienced, what you know. What if I made a list of all the issues that were talked about — keeping all participants’ names anonymous, of course — and compiled them somehow, organized them into some form of data? I won’t write a research paper (yet) but a lot of papers I’ve read were based on data extracted from surveys and questionnaires. If I compiled a list of questions and a list of answers from people who think they’re ASD because of behaviors they have that doesn’t allow them to “fit in”, what would I find?
And if the mental health experts call us all “normal”, that obviously means we’re not hallucinating at all. The noises we hear, the objects we see, the thoughts we have — they can’t be hallucinations if we’re “not crazy”. And if we’re not crazy, our experiences and behaviors have more of a foothold in reality than that of someone who hallucinates. Therefore, our experiences merit some kind of believability.
Last year, I thought I was going crazy. I was convinced I was doing things badly and not knowing why, or when, or how. I was paranoid every single day of every thought I had. every decision I made, every thing I did — was that thought correct? Did I do the right thing that everyone else would do? Did I make the choice that everyone else would’ve made? I was paranoid that other people were watching me and waiting for me to make a mistake. I started distrusting, doubting myself, doubting others. Eventually I started to doubt my own reality, because I don’t remember doing that thing wrong so many times. I never thought that asking “So what do you want me to do?” and getting an answer “Whatever you think is best; you have to make your own judgement” and doing that but getting it wrong every time. I tried my hardest to be perfect, but it only dug myself into a deeper hole. It wouldn’t compute, because I believed for my whole life, if one works hard, one will succeed. It never occurred to me that trying so hard would end up in failure anyway.
I want an answer to all this. I want to know why all that happened. I want to stop feeling as if reality was fading away into a nightmare. I want to stop feeling as if I’m damaged goods. I want to never have last year happen again.