Thursday, December 15, 2005

from private vent blog #2

Aspies can be scary. Imagine one thats taller than you and a million miles more intelligent. One whose answer to every twinge of insecurity is to verbally slice in to you. One who consequently spends his entire life convinced that everyone else is both ignorant (comparatively true) and in the wrong. They must be in the wrong, they're ignorant.

Underneath all that is a person who feels perpetually shunned, like a square peg in a round hole, with all the attendant pains and insecurities, tortures and fears, glazed over with a hard shell of behaviours designed to make the pain go away, that make the people leave too.

Thats my brother. The thing is, he decided long ago that nothings wrong with him, its the rest of the (stupid, ignorant) world. You can't tell him he would personally benefit from diagnosis because all he hears is an accusation, that he needs his head examined.

40, he is, and somewhere inside that awful, abusive and dismissive shell, is a wonderful human being whose life and chances are wasting away.

My older son phoned today. One reason was to sort out Christmas. The other was to mention that he was safe, following the news reports of the boy fisherman, sole survivor of an upturned tug in the same stretch of waters.

Many fisherman swap around, go where the work is. Skippers on the bigger vessels have their hands on rota and will lend them out if another rig is shorthanded. You eat, sleep, shit, fart, swear, work and sweat next to these guys for weeks at a time, climbing over other bodies to reach your bunk at night. You rely on each other for your lives - the rope laid down badly, the cages not secure, the various pulleys and levers not oiled and maintained and checked properly could cost anyone his life, regardless of whose job it was.

He knows the boy, a 19 year old, who is obviously a blubbering wreck. His Uncle drowned beneath him. During the five hours that he was out there, he tried and tried to pull two crew mates up onto the upturned hull and just didnt have the strength. He is a sole survivor, all because the release mechanism on the floating distress beacon went wrong - it just never came up to the surface.

His other uncle is also known to the local fishermen, used to be a skipper himself, until the boiler on his vessel exploded and he watched as it blew up and killed his two sons. Yesterday his brother died too.

My son is 21. Already he can count three personal friends who have died at sea in ugly ways, doing exactly the job that he does. But he's ADHD. He sees the necessity to do the job perfectly, that a tiny fuck up could have huge consequences, but doesn't see any reason to fear, or to imagine another future in another job. Another part of his lack of empathic thinking is that he doesnt see the reason to soften these facts for me - to him its of great interest. Protecting me isnt something that would cross his mind.

I am tired.

My husband - well. He has ulcers. He tries to share them. I wouldn't call him aggressive, just, well, permanently disgruntled. Nobody else ever sees it. They get the guy I fell in love with, all the laughs, all the optimism, but he comes home and takes them off as easily as his coat and shoes. I am the refuge that allows him to have something resembling fun during his working day, I am where he can be himself. Its just a little inconvenient that I never get a look in. I love him, but I don't like him very much and he shames and depresses me.

I'd probably feel the same about me. I have no energy, no be-bothered. I am grey skinned and tatty, in looks, in mind, even in my home. I and what I rule have gone to pot. Maybe I'm depressed, but if thats true it has crept up in an insidious way, over the years.

I used to know who I was. Now I'm just this blob indoors, on call to others. If you gave me my freedom I would shun it, because I can't remember the point.

Tomorrow I have a meeting with the school headteacher, at the end of the last day of term before Christmas. My younger Aspie son, even with one-on one help for much of his schoolday, has run up too many half hour detentions to be allowed on the end of school trip next July.

They take all the kids to an adventure holiday park on the Isle of White - but too many detentions means the child cannot display enough respect for the rules to be safe. I havent had the heart to tell him - not before Christmas.

The thing is (and its happening now just thinking about it), if they corner me into an admission, something will snap. If I have to tell them that this trip means more than the world to him - not just for fitting in, but because we have never, in his life, managed a single bloody family holiday, that he has never gone anywhere further than my mum's house for e week every other year, then I will cry. I will sob like a fucking loony in the middle of the school buildings.

And I think that when I get out I will just start walking in the wrong direction.

I'm 44 for Christ's sake. Where in all my upbringing did anyone even happen to mention that life starts ok, and then it just gets worse and worse and worse. I was tricked and I got a bum deal. This is no fucking fun and I want a refund.

1 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I also want a refund! Maybe I just had too much fun in my 20's and its now pay back. Recently discovered Aspie husband and bi polar daughter. All too much, am in black hole but will climb out soon. Thanks for your words.

March 19, 2007 2:33 AM  

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