Talking to somebody the other day about Aspergers, they said “It’s all in your mind.” Well… yes. That’s kind of the point, isn’t it? Idiot!
People like this anger and frustrate me. It’s partly that they believe I could choose not to be this way, and partly that they believe it’s not a “real” disorder. (They’re often the same people who are dismissive of depression, equating it to feeling sad.)
One thing that particularly hurt in this case was that it was a person I’d thought was reasonably understanding and that I had classed as a friend. They don’t know they hurt me – I’m not going to say anything because then I’ll be getting into uncomfortable emotive territory – but I’ve been more wary when speaking to them since.
I know that there are people I mix with who are understanding and even actively supportive – that’s why I mix with them: friends. There are others with whom I feel comfortable enough to speak but there’s no involvement: acquaintances. It takes me a long time to start considering a person who has been an acquaintance to be a friend. But it doesn’t take nearly as long for one to lose that status in my eyes.
(But that’s not where I was intending to go with this. I’m rambling again. Note to self: at least look like you’re trying to stay on topic.)
I try to communicate what it is like to be me but some people just don’t get it. I’m sure it’s partly my fault: I don’t express myself nearly as eloquently in speech as when I write. When I’m speaking I hesitate – “um…, er…” – while I assemble the next thought. I sometimes lose the word I want – I know what I want to say, I know that I know the word, I can define the word, but can I remember it? And I start to focus on that instead of carrying on speaking.
I have a tendency to ramble – to stray off the subject – unless I actively concentrate on the direction of my thoughts, which requires planning an outline in advance. Obviously no good in general conversation! I also have a habit of expanding on minor subjects around the main topic – it almost becomes a lecture – and my audience start ignoring me, talking amongst themselves and so on – to the extent that even I realise I’ve lost their interest – and I just stop speaking regardless of whether or not I’ve finished what I was trying to say.
I should just carry a pen and paper and write what I want to put across.