Part 61: Where The Heart Is

Hello and welcome back to The Autistic Writer. Thanks for being here. I’ve now completed my first full week of living on my own in my new flat. I’ve cooked myself some meals, and anyone who knows my feelings about cooking and preparing food will be suitably shocked and impressed by this revelation. I like food (perhaps too much), but I detest the preparation of it. There’s some kind of psychological barrier there that, like many of my personal issues, has intensified with age. I’ve cleaned my flat, which is a very different situation than cooking. I like cleaning. It’s kinda satisfying. I am still without wifi, which has annoyed me more than I can say. I rely heavily on the internet and web-based apps to function. Hopefully, BT broadband will keep their promise to get me connected on Monday, but I have a bad feeling about it. Being without wifi means I’m writing this blog on my phone again, rather than on my big-screen laptop. I can’t stand working like this, and once again, I hope you will forgive the brevity, lack of focus, and inevitable typos in this week’s blog…


You can find The Autistic Writer on all your favourite social media channels


To say I’m exhausted would be an understatement. It’s not just the physical work of moving home and starting again from scratch – although that is considerable. It’s the emotional turmoil and, dare I say it, fear of the future. I’m in my mid-fifties, and facing up to having to rebuild every single facet of my life. A couple of people have reached out to me; friends I haven’t seen for a long time, and that’s been very heartwarming. I sometimes feel like I don’t have any friends, but that’s bullshit; I just don’t have a circle with whom I go out and socialise any more. But regular readers of this blog will know that socialising is something I find very difficult anyway. Yes, I appeared to be a party animal when I was younger, but the truth is that I was doing what I felt socially pressured to do. Nevertheless, it is interesting and slightly disturbing that being single again has brought back all those old feelings that I should be socialising and getting “out there”. It’s a visceral reaction that feels like a flashback, and I don’t like it.



Emotionally and mentally, I’m all over the place, right now. I’m desperate to find a routine and rhythm in my life again, and hopefully that will gradually emerge as I settle into this new home and new situation. I’m sure many people in the autistic community will understand when I say the lack of a settled daily routine is eating away at me.


Interlude: A brief message

I will never put this blog behind a paywall. I want anyone, anywhere, to be able to access this content at any time. There are costs incurred running this website, however. So if you like what I’m trying to do here, please feel free to show your support with a small contribution via buymeacoffee.com. Okay, back to the blog.


I said this week’s blog would be a short one again, and so it is. But I want to end with one autism-related thought. It’s my observation that the miscommunication between autistic people and neurotypical people occurs on many levels. Autistic people are far more likely to say what they actually mean and feel, whereas neurotypicals play all kinds of games of misdirection with their words, their eye contact, their half-truths, lies, and secrets. If an autistic person says something like, “I’ve had enough, and I can’t take this anymore,” they almost certainly mean it, and are not being dramatic. The ways neurotypicals speak about how they are feeling are many and varied, and it’s difficult to know when something that’s been said is largely accurate, or over-dramatic, or understated. This is just one aspect of the countless ways in which autistic people and neurotypicals fail to communicate properly, and it baffles me. The recent seismic changes in my life have prompted me to reflect on all kinds of previous relationships; friendly, romantic, professional, etc, but I am, unfortunately, still no wiser.


You can find The Autistic Writer on all your favourite social media channels

That’s all for this time. Hopefully, by next week things will be calmer, wifi will be in place, and I’ll have more to say. Until then, take care, be good, stay proud.

Darren


Why Do I Write This Blog?

When I first found out I was autistic, I was a middle-aged adult and I knew nothing about autism. I quickly learned that there was a serious shortage of information and resources for adults in my situation. With this blog, I aim to inform about autism and autism-related issues as I learn, hopefully helping people who are on a similar journey of discovery. Like anyone who writes a blog, I want to reach as many readers as possible; if you like what I’m doing, please share it with your friends and followers. I will never hide this blog behind a paywall, but running the website does incur costs. If you would like to support, feel free to make a small contribution at BuyMeACoffee.Com.

You might also be interested in David Scothern’s blog, Mortgage Advisor on FIRE, which covers a range of topics including mental health issues and financial independence.


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