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Autism: Control Freak!

25 Mar

I think it came as a result of something I was reading. He was sitting on the chair beside me, and I suppose I was being very vocal about the words. As I have mentioned in the past, I have difficulty with swear words. It isn’t so much a matter of principal – more the way they make me feel… like someone cooking Kraft dinner in the house, or the smell of barbecues. Fine for some people. Fine for most people. I acknowledge that.

It isn’t that I feel these things are the worst things in the world, but the smells, the sounds, the words… they leave me feeling very sick. No exaggeration They quickly have me curled up in the fetal position, in tears, and wanting to die.

But it isn’t like I care at all if someone does these things in their house – unless I am there. I would even admit that it is not my place to say anything about it… only – please, please, please, don’t do it when I am there. I can’t explain it. It may seem rude – but remember that I have an extremely sensitive central nervous system. When I say it is bad, when it seems to hurt me, it is not an exaggeration It really does!

So back to the words. I know it is common for people to say them – and really, I don’t care. Just… I don’t want to hear them. I don’t want to read them. I block them out as much as I can, but I am so visual, that as soon as I hear them, as soon as I read them, the picture is in my mind. I can’t help it – and believe me when I say, “it is not pleasant.”

A few days ago, he was on the chair, visiting me – and I was trying to listen to him, while reading an article. And I kept coming to the same place over and over, and that word! I probably would have just skipped right over it, but I was distracted, and got stuck there.

He laughed at me, and then confessed, “I swear all the time,” he said. What? Those words are bad! Now truly, he has never sworn at me – not once, and he is turning twenty this weekend. It isn’t like he is some young child, and even I have to admit, most people his age do. Most adults do.

Ty's Haircut 2016 001

Since he doesn’t ever swear around me, I really don’t care – but it has been so much fun teasing him on it. For instance, every time he comes to visit me now, I will remind him to “try not to swear at me.” Or, since he told me he does swear at his cat (and she does cry frequently – mostly because she is just about to turn 18, and is almost deaf and blind, and is asking him where he is) I tell him, “it is no wonder China cries all the time.” I say it in a teasing way (I think) and he often turns away and laughs.

At the same time, he told me yesterday that I was a “control freak.” No, he wasn’t being mean – it was teasing much the same way I do to him – but I could also tell he felt there was some truth to it (especially in regards to the swearing.)

But the thing is, I am obsessive. I am compulsive. I suppose that due to my Aspergers, I do fixate on things. I can’t let go. I can’t! But it isn’t like I want to control him. It is more that I want to control my environment – for so many things hurt.

I guess that he was worried about what I thought, for today, after days of teasing him (I guess it was a big confession on his part) I told him that I really don’t care that much. I am just glad he doesn’t swear around me – which led us to talking about the way we think – how he hears his thoughts, where I see them… all of them. And I think that is what makes all the difference. After I told him that I really didn’t care, he seemed much more comfortable talking to me. I didn’t mean to make him feel bad – but it was really fun to tease him.

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4 responses to “Autism: Control Freak!

  1. kazst

    March 28, 2016 at 11:18 pm

    I guess you already know this is a way in which you and I vastly differ. I don’t mind most of those words. To be fair, I can’t stand blasphemies, because those are the only words that truly mean something in the grand scheme of things. And I don’t like those words used in anger at people, but that’s more about the intention than the actual words. But used for emphasis or to blow off steam… that is another matter. I do that.

    I don’t even really comprehend the concept of “bad words”… like a mental list of specific words that are taboo. That just doesn’t even make sense to my brain. Especially since language changes over time. (I am interested in linguistics and have done a lot of reading on it.) There are words that are considered bad that were acceptable in the past (I could give examples, but I guess that wouldn’t be a good idea), and vice versa. Other words take their place as the “taboo” way to express those concepts. So who decides which words are “bad” and which words are okay? Society? Why can’t I decide for myself?

    And here’s the thing: I don’t want to make you uncomfortable, and I know how urgent it feels on my end for someone to stop when they’re doing something that grates on my nervous system. It is an awful feeling to have no control over something that is having such a detrimental effect on me. So I do empathize and sympathize on that point. But at the same time, I can’t promise I will never use those words, especially in my writing. I want to be respectful to other people’s sensitivities, but at the same time, if I feel like I have to censor myself, I will shrivel up and withdraw. I need freedom of self expression or I will practically die inside. I’m so sorry. I realize this might affect how you see me (you don’t have to address this) but I am what I am.

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    • kazst

      March 28, 2016 at 11:26 pm

      To clarify, I know you said you don’t really mind if people use those words, as long as they don’t use them around you, but I probably do and will use them from time to time in my writing, and you see that. So you might think I’m being disrespectful to you, knowing how you feel about it, but I’m just being me and being real and I can’t stop that. Unless I censor myself, but that will really cripple me and my writing once that self-censorship kicks in. I don’t know how to explain this better… 😦

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      • Walkinfaith925

        March 29, 2016 at 12:28 pm

        Most of the time when I am reading, I skip over “those words” without issue. The time I wrote about, I was distracted, and every time I looked at the article that was the word that stood out. I don’t think less of people for using them, and when I was working, I was the only person who didn’t speak like that. I learned to block it out, and even liked the people I worked with.

        Really, any words that put disgusting pictures in my mind have to be blocked – but it is not like I often say anything to the person about it. And any word said in anger seems to bother me as much – like a slap in the face. My husband uses the word, “sick!” when he is frustrated. I have never told him how it makes me feel. Despite my own issues with words, I don’t really try to censor what people say, though I do with children, and I am grateful that my son doesn’t talk around me like that as I talk to him more than anyone, and it is exhausting always to have to block out words.

        But I am not judging you, and do not think less of you, and am not trying to censor you from using them. I am just expressing that this is another of my struggles living in this world.

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  2. kazst

    March 29, 2016 at 1:02 pm

    Okay, I can understand that. There are many things (different things) that are like this for me; things that drastically affect me and cause me to struggle but that seem to just be a part of living in this world. It is hard. Even my husband has things like this. He is very sensitive to noises, and I have an asthmatic cough that jangles his nerves, but what can he do? It’s a little different in that case, of course, as I have no control over it, but that just makes it even tougher. He gets more and more rattled, I feel more and more awful for doing that to him. It’s a bad situation.

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