Tag Archives: asperger’s girls

Presents! Resources to Share!

This is going to be a quick post. I should be in the shower at this very moment! However, I would not be able to go on with my day unless I shared some resources that I received as presents last night. (I am stuck in a “Must Share” loop.) I will share in a moment, but first I will tell you about the awesome presents my kids picked out for me. They each picked out their own card and then, gifts. Ariel and Joshua both got me journals to write in, which I thought was so wonderful. Daniel chose two different sets of paper clips, a box of green and blue ones and red and pink ones. He also, picked out a glowing light star wand. He said, he chose them for me because, “I thought you would like them a lot.”

Awesome! (He wants my star wand. lol!) 

I admit I do have a fondness of paper clips that I have not shared with anyone. :-) They are fun to play with. I played with my dad’s paper clips all the time as a child. He always had office supplies and let me do whatever I wanted with them. While he worked as a manager at Wendy’s he had all sorts of office goodies and allowed me to play in his office until he would get off from work. When he changed jobs and started working for the Geological Survey, he had the coolest office supplies ever! He would take me in on the weekends and I was able to play with the copier, staplers, staple removers, legal pads! For some reason I found legal pads quite interesting. And YES, paper clips. They are fun. I could go into all of my paper clip adventures, but I haven’t the time today!

Ok, onto the resources, they have been sitting in my wish list for a while.

The first book, I picked up immediately and I am on chapter three. I cannot emphasize this enough, if you are an Aspergers woman, or parent of an Aspergers girl go get this book! Well you do not have to, but I think it is a great resource. :-) I have already had so many things confirmed and much clarity in only the first three chapters. (Click on the book images to go to the link.)

aspergers girl skills

The next book looks very promising as well.

positive autism

 

From the intro of the book:

“Imagine a science that is as interested in health and well-being as disease and disorder. A science that strives to promote flourishing and fulfillment at each of the individual, group, and social levels. A science that studies what makes life worth living. A science that holds meaningful lessons for all who choose to consider it. A science that speaks to us personally, as practitioners, as much as it does to the people for whom we practice. This is the science of positive psychology. (Linley and Joseph 2004, p.xv)”

“Traits such as optimism, resilience  and kindness are central topics in the growing field of positive psychology. This book addresses the importance of fostering these and other character strengths in the persons with autism and developmental disabilities to improve their quality of life.” 

The next one I am so excited about as well, it is a special interest, and I believe it will help my understanding about my synesthesia.

There seems to be many of us on the spectrum who have some form of synesthesia. Mine is quite intense in multiple areas, anywhere from the colors of numbers and letters, to seeing, feeling, tasting emotions. It is an interesting processing adventure, not always fun and sometimes extremely intense emotionally, physically, and at times it feels intense in a spiritual sense.

indigo wednesday

 

 

The last book is a special interest and it is to help me in my healing process.

I do believe that Autistic persons can and do get sucked into manipulation without knowing it. We can fall into toxic relationships of any sorts. I am still recovering from damage that happened to me while in church settings. I do not believe that all churches are like this, but the reality is that they are out there. It is beneficial to become aware and read up on these types of things especially, if you feel that something is just not right. Many times you may not be able to pin point the issues, they can be cleverly disguised and make a person confused. Once confusion sets in, I can only speak for myself, I can start to teeter and doubt my gut feelings. However, I am not doing that nearly as often anymore, but I still have residual affects from the things I went through.

Enough of my speech. :-)

 

spiritual abuse

 

Those are my resources for today.

I am SO late! I best take a quick shower and get everyone and myself ready. Send some positive vibes and happy thoughts, for the party today. The weather is making everyone off and a little cranky. :-)  Happy Saturday!

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Revisiting Aspergirls The Book

After thinking about some of these things that have truly “connected” in my brain this time around, I decided to revisit another book Aspergirls by Rudy Simone. I touched on the chapters titled “Marriage and Cohabitation” and “Burning Bridges” this evening. I did go over several others as well, but these two stuck out to me. First the marriage and cohabitation topic. I went back over this because it helped me remember that I am not the only one. The thing about my memory, which seems to be a common thread with Aspie’s, is that my long-term memory is insanely accurate and easy to retrieve through my senses or other triggers. My short-term memory is not as easy to retrieve and I forget a lot. I thought that there was something seriously wrong with my brain at times because my short-term memory was so bad. After reading this post “The Aspie Memory” I felt great comfort.

The terms “filmographic” instead of photographic and the “mysterious disappearing short-term memory” made me smile and say: “Thank you!”

One purpose for me writing all of these connecting factors is to create a deep-rooted memory. I am trying to get that long-term memory movie that plays and can be infused by my senses and series of events to ensure that I DO NOT FORGET. I know I will if I do not. I digress! In the chapter about marriage and cohabitation she has some very insightful things to say. First an aspergirls home is very important. It needs to be safe, we have control over all of our sensory input and needs in our home. She said: “If we have enough money to live in our choice environment, home is heaven on earth.” What a lovely thought! Oh, when my home is in perfect order, the perfect temperature, the perfect lighting, on and on I am the happiest person in the world. When my closet is straight and pantry is organized all neat and orderly, while everything else is a mess, I can find a little solace looking at them. Ok, sometimes I have plopped down in the middle of my closet and just smiled when everything is the way I want it.

I did it again…order makes me get dazed and giddy. :-)

She commented on how having someone in our life can be a benefit. Having someone helps us to not fall into complete solitary habits creating routines that we can become very rigid with. Also, that having another person in our life can bring challenges and help us to grow. She said: “Marriage is difficult; it is a series of exchanges, compromises, and conversations. It means sharing your physical space, meals, having less alone time.” Ok, I know that most people know this, but when you are actually living it, it can be much more difficult to grasp. For me I would say the conversation part can be the most challenging. Sometimes I just do not want to talk or cannot from the intense sensory/social things that I have experienced. I am not trying to be rude, I just need quiet.

Another thing that really popped out at me was this:

“For us, it really takes a special kind of person to be in it for the long haul.”

I know that I am difficult. I know that I can be frustrating with my questions and constant fixations that I get so incredibly excited about. I know that I am intense and many times TOO honest, I have tried to stop me, but I just can’t. I think David may be happier if I wasn’t so honest at times. :-) If I keep it to myself though, I get sick and can get depressed. I really got a lot out of reading this chapter again because it helped me feel accepting of myself and realize that I do not have isolated issues or feelings. I will share some more quotes that I thought were good.

“I need a partner to keep me sane! He knows more about AS than me and he’s very aware about how to handle my meltdowns or upsets.” (Sarah)

“I chose my Aspie husband because he was uncomplicated, straightforward, honest, and strong in areas that I am weak. We connected on a non-verbal level. I knew he understood me and I understood him.” (Jen)

She said before the next quote:

“Because we don’t like the whole dating process, and because there may have been few men whom we had a romantic connection to, some of us jump very quickly into marriage. Aspergirls like myself have married because we were at a certain age; we didn’t know what love was, we just thought it was the right time.”

“I have married twice, both times quickly without dating, and at the insistence of the other. I would not recommend this; both men ended up abusive. Now I love my solitude!” (Widders) 

I found what she said and this last quote to be very helpful with my own feelings of “I should have known” for just getting into relationships and not dating or questioning why the person just ended up in my life. It seems to be another area where some Aspie’s fall into and that helps me not feel so stupid to be honest. She goes on to talk about how we are innocent and believe people at their word and believe that they will keep their words to us. Speaking about her own marriages, she felt lonely in both and they criticized her. I am going to share some other quotes she wrote because I think that they are important and empowering.

“It’s really important that a person with Asperger’s is not criticized. That only makes us curl up into a ball.  We need positive reinforcement for the good things we do, and then we will strive to do more of that. It takes a very special partner to understand this.”

“Some of us, because of the social criticisms and isolation we have had to endure, may have internalized that we don’t “deserve” a truly wonderful partner; that being lonely might be the price we pay for being flawed. The right partner will look at those same attributes with a very different perspective than the wrong one.”

“Meltdowns and depression can take on mammoth proportions for an Aspergirl and it takes a special man not to run away in the face of our emotional storms.”

The last one about meltdowns and depression are a pretty big deal. Though I understand many of my triggers and sensory/social issues that can cause me to have my moments they can feel random and all of a sudden. I have not had deep depression or major meltdowns in a long time because of the progression of awareness and understanding I have gained about myself. They can happen if I am pushed (figuratively) into talking or requested to express myself when I do not have the words or understanding of things. If I have social confusion or sensory overload I can meltdown or shut down. Sometimes I am just dizzy, feel nauseous, and have no words, those are the times not to ask me questions or force me to talk.

Last quote from this chapter:

“A person married to an Aspergirl has to be nurturing, patient, and he has to read–for if he doesn’t read about AS, he’ll never get you.”

The “Burning Bridges” chapter.

OH! I am notorious for burning bridges. When I am done with someone I am done. It takes a lot to get me to the point of getting rid of a person entirely in my life, but when I hit my wall that is it. I do not have what my mom has, the ability to forget their existence. Sometimes I wish I did. I tend to fixate on them for a while until I have resolved completely that I am done. I realize that this is not good, but I am not sure how to stop it. I have done this with jobs as well. When I discovered that a couple of places that I worked for were dishonest in their practices I could not force myself to go. I HAD to quit. I did not give notice and that left gaps in my resume. There are certain things that in my mind trump other things, such as, I felt it was just to up and leave those places without notice because they were liars and thieves.

That trumped my irresponsible behavior by not giving  notice and not having another job lined up.

I am glad to see that I am not the only one that has some pretty erratic behavior. In the chapter many of the women share similar stories that they did in their own life. I am one who has randomly decided that it was time to pack up and move and start over on several occasions. This type of behavior seems odd for an Aspie since we do like routine and constant. However, when “burning bridges” we are the one in control. It has always been MY decision to make the choice to leave a relationship (any type) or employment and never looking back, while in burning bridges mode. I confess it has felt good to make those decisions and walk away and say ‘Screw you!” BUT then I have been left with the consequences. Those are always painful and hard to deal with. I do not suggest always burning bridges because in my experiences they come back to burn me again.

I have had to humble myself and apologize on several occasions because of this behavior.

I have learned my lesson after so many years of doing it and I have decided that it is much better to think through things and not make those decisions based on “being done” with people or being in a meltdown mode. In some cases it was the best thing for me to do. I do think that being a mom and being older has changed this behavior in me quite a bit. When I was single and younger I could just pack up and go and never look back, I cannot do that now there is a lot more at stake. There have been several reasons for my burning bridges. Mostly it was because I felt trapped. I felt like I was in a bad situation and needed to get out. Some of them were and it was good that I got out. Others I did out of anger or hurt. Those are the ones that have always come back for me to deal with.

I will share some more quotes from this chapter and then sign off.

If you have not read this book I highly recommend it for anyone who thinks that they may be an Aspergirl or someone who loves an Aspergirl and wants to understand her better. It is a great resource for parents. This is just my opinion I do not get anything for saying all of that, I really think that it is a great book. It has been very helpful to me anyway.

“If I do not like a situation it’s so much easier to just walk away, avoid it and never look back. Usually it’s just a relief but then if I’m avoiding someone I have to worry about running into them so it can add some stress too. I have a really bad memory so after some time has passed, if I run into someone, I’m just like nothing ever happened.” (Nikki)

“My life is a series of burned bridges. At the time, it feels as if I am right and that I am standing up for what I believe in. Often I am. I have, however, learned in the past decade that I can be very black and white in my thinking.” (Camilla)

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Girls and Asperger’s

I have recently picked up the book Asperger’s and Girls and it has opened my eyes to this world. I cannot express into words how it makes me feel to read that I am not alone in my thinking, feeling and confusion about this world and people. I read recently that we are an evolved species that has the triggers for inclusion, belonging is a need that is part of our DNA make up. However, from my point of view inclusion does not mean the same thing as what other people may feel. The problem that I have had with “belonging” is that in order to belong one must conform, it is “become one of us or you are one of them” and frankly I cannot not do that. I like my identity and one thing that makes me the most exuberant person in the world is to see other people be their individual self. When I see someone break out of a mold and find them-self that makes me leap for joy.

Back to the book, Asperger’s and Girls.

It was recommended to me about a year ago and I was finally able to get it. I recommend it to any women on the spectrum. The more I find the more I am both comforted and sad at the same time. I am comforted because I am not the only one and sad because I wish I would have known this stuff a long time ago, it may have helped to prevent heart ache and confusion. As I am reading it though I see a lot of Ariel and how she is more like me than I thought. I am taking the information, I am learning it and filing it away for the years as she grows. I already notice how she will internalize things which I do too and that behavior caused me to be self-destructive and cause bodily harm to myself. I am hoping to give her a healthy self-image and the ability to think and stand up for herself. The goal is to let her know that she has a voice and it is important that she speaks it. I feel the same way for the boys but in this culture we live in, they claim that women have a voice but the dominating factor is the “Old White Christian Male” who will acknowledge a women for her beauty and claim that they are respecting her intelligence.

They let the little lady speak for a little bit but then laugh it off with a ‘isn’t that cute” feeling.

I could be wrong but I don’t think so America seems to still have the good ol ‘ boy mentality, at least where we are currently living. This really is just a rant, I will get back to my topic. First A Side Note: I just want to state here that I am not being overly sensitive to Ariel or Joshua, I am in observation mode. I have been observing Daniel for so long that I have not noticed a lot of things that they were doing. Now that I am understanding Daniel more I have been able to focus on some of their issues that I did not notice before. My goal with all of them is to help them be confident in who they are, understand themselves and grow into independent happy people. Ok, now back to the topic. :-)

I have been reading several articles and watched this great clip with Dr. Tony Attwood.

\”Ask Dr. Tony\” on Girls with Aspergers – An Autism Hangout Feature Program

As I watched the video, again it was like watching someone describe my life. There are times when I do not know who I am at all because when I go out it is like my mind pulls up the script that I have learned and I automatically go into it. I find myself talking to someone and in my mind I am thinking “This isn’t me, why am I saying this?” Before I know it I am caught up saying things that I don’t agree with or I am confused by. I know that I have adopted scripts from people all along the way of my life and now the act has become so embedded that I don’t realize that I am doing it. I believe this is the majority of my social anxiety, I am unable to be myself because I don’t really know how to other than in my own home. However, this is not really talking about what I meant to talk about either and because I keep getting side tracked I will just leave with several sites and articles that I have found, that seem to have some good information on them.

More Than Just ‘Quirky’

Girls and Asperger’s Syndrome

About the Spectrum (This one has FAQ’s questions 12 & 13 are about females)

Girls with Asperger’s Syndrome

Girls & Women on the Autistic Spectrum

Asperger’s Syndrome in Women: A Different Set of Challenges?

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