The pain of coming to terms with having Asperger's
is still very real for me right now. There is a tremendous
sense of grief. Grief for all that I suffered through
to try to be "normal" and grief for how short of "normal"
I always have been. There is also great relief to know
that I am not crazy and that not everything can be
traced back to an abusive past in the sense that some
of what I experience is not choice/emotional but
neurons/physical. The greatest challenge I face right
now is trying to figure out which is which. This is
All those years of not "getting it" socially and
never knowing why. All those years of not "belonging"
of being "teased" and "bullied" make more sense now
As I work to accept this I have looked around for
more information and support. I am appalled really
at the lack of information out there for adults with
Asperger's. Why is there such a lack of it? The
extreme focus on children seems to me to be very
short-sighted. Children are growing into adults every
day and what happens to them when they cross that
threshold? I'll bet they fall into the same abyss that
so many of us adults live in. What then? Who is going
to wake up and start to ensure that those of us who
are adults with AS get the help and support - not to
mention understanding that we need and deserve?
Coming to terms with this label that explains so
much about why I am the way I am brings with it a
measure of understanding, but one that so far, leaves
me weeping. Yes, weeping. I am finding this (as I always
have) very painful. The most painful aspect of it is
the lack of understanding of so many others. Having to
try to explain myself at the same time that I am in such
pain and grief is really only adding salt to the wound.
So many people, in efforts to help, I think, go on
about how they are different too and how I'm apparently
like them. If they only knew. If they only knew what I
really feel like inside. If they only had a grasp of some
measure of understanding of all that I don't feel that I'm
(apparently) supposed to feel, maybe then, just maybe then,
they'd get that we are not the same. Why do so many people
invest so much in trying to "make me the same" and/or tell
me I am the same. They do not feel the what I feel. They
do feel what I don't feel. They just don't get it. They
don't get my world any more then I get their world.
I have awakened to my loneliness Awakening To Loneliness
and the despair is overwhelming. I simultaneously experience
desire and disinterest in terms of communicating/relating to/with
others. Efforts made to "socialize" only end with me experiencing
abject boredom and lostness. I have learned also that no one
wants to know this and that everyone (if told) takes this
personally, just another reality that walls me in even further.
I have such disdain for group dynamics, "pack mentality", the
seemingly shared commonality of the masses. Why do people
need/want this? This is the place where I can't help but be
what others refer to as defiant. I must resist all that is
so overwhelming that it leaves me with sensory overload.
Sensory overload HURTS! It is aggravating, anxiety-producing
and painful. It is the point (if not sooner) at which I MUST
get away. I must be alone. I seek out a dark, quiet and low to
no stimuli spot to recuperate from the utter assaults to my
senses that so much of "average everyday life" is.
In watching others socialize it appears to me that they
get something pleasurable and or enjoyable from it. This
I do not understand (beyond intellectually). This I have
never felt. Still, some try to tell me that I "must have
felt it, and that perhaps you just aren't aware of it."
Oh please! Whatever! Why are they so invested in trying
to invert my reality and make it be what their reality is
and what it seems they "need" mine to be? Why? I can sit
and watch socialization but it does not make me want to
do it. It does not make me feel it. I only feel as I have
always felt, alientated, lost, and on another planet.
Recently, however, with a very in-depth examination of
this (I went back to therapy) that continues at the time
I am writing this, I have awakened to a sense of loneliness.
I think I have somehow managed to put a few toes of one
of my feet on planet "social Earth" and this has left me
spinning, falling on my own planet, whirling around, lost,
and trapped between the reality of the masses and my own
reality. Trapped between the sense of wanting to "socialize"
and the reality that I can't feel any pleasure from it.
Trapped. Trapped to the tune of trying to be what others
want/need me to be to relate to me it seems. Trapped between
trying to "act" in ways that bring acceptance as opposed to
rejection in what seems, at times, to be desperate attempts
to open my world up to others. I think others connect with me
sometimes. I've been told I'm very likeable. Yet sadly, these
connecting attempts of mine, for the most part, fail, over
and over again. At least I think it's failure? Or I think I'm
being told it's failure if I don't FEEL as others feel?
I know people, whatever that really means. People may
feel or believe they know me. But truthfully, they know
only a part of me, the part of me that sits through agonizing
anxiety to share space with them. The part of me that keeps
wanting to push as far forward as I can in terms of "relating".
The part of me that feels so painfully isolated no matter
what I try to do. Isolated by the reality that I cannot and
do not feel as others do when it comes to what the essence
of "average" connectedness is.
I think the plea of all with Asperger's goes something
like this: "Please don't pull away from me if you know
that I am rotely trying to relate to you. Please understand
that I want to feel what others share, I just can't get there.
This does not mean I am not human. It does not mean that I
don't want your understanding. I do. I can't empathize
with you - I don't know how you feel. I have a lot of difficulty
trying to communicate what I feel or don't feel with and
about others. I am afraid you won't understand. Can you allow
me my difference? If I tolerate your planet's reality can't
you think about tolerating mine?"
Right now I have a strong sense that I am banging my head
on a wall trying to push through things that I just may never
get to the other side of. And so the struggle to accept my
limitations continues. The struggle to fully identify and
understand them continues as well.
© Ms. A.J. Mahari 2001
Awakening To My Loneliness
as of December 24, 2001