Hi, I've literally only just signed up to this page. I was recently diagnosed with autism last month after waiting 10 years. Along side with autism I have been diagnosed with extreme anxiety, which makes it even more difficult to cope in certain situations.
I was discussing autistic meltdowns with my close friends who is also autistic, and he was saying to me that he feels helpless while I'm having a meltdown because I don't like being touched or even talked to during it. Does anyone else have this? I know a few autistic people who find it helpful for people to psychically comfort them when they're extremely stressed, but I absolutely hate it and I find it makes me feel even worse. Is anyone else like this? I feel quite alone in this situation.
Thank you :)
I like the term 'meltdown', as that's just what it feels like to me - a nuclear power station reaching critical threshold before KABOOM!
Alas, in my previous jobs I was just labelled as 'angry', 'fiery', 'moody' or a 'trouble maker' etc etc.
But the one thing that still surprises me is that on the rare occasion I do get into this very unique mindstate - whereby I crave solitude and sensory isolation - Neurotypicals just can't seem to help themselves. Despite me verbally, repeatedly and vehemently saying I don't want to be touched or engaged, they seem to insist on doing so, to an extreme degree, which only makes me that much worse.
That's fair enough. In autistic care, though, 'meltdown' is regarded in the same way that we might talk about someone with mental health problems as 'throwing a wobbly'. We have to refer to 'incidents' in reports and discussions.
Mine feel more like Meltdowns too, I feel as if my brain has reached a crisis point and explodes / implodes. A few times I've even believed I could smell either a burnt plastic smell or taste that sort of coppery-fizz that you get if you've ever had an electric shock. Weird!
My meltdowns usually manifest as uncontrollable anger / rage and in the past were scarily violent. I've learned to control and even stop them in their tracks as I've gotten older but that's just as exhausting as having them and also makes me 'offline' (my brain just doesn't seem able to process anything) for at least a few days. I definitely don't want anyone to talk to me during them and absolutely not to touch me. I just need to be left alone to work it out however long it takes.
As I don't know anyone else with AS, the only thing I've seen that comes close to my meltdowns was when my daughter, as a toddler, used to have explosive temper tantrums. Terrifyingly familiar to watch! The only difference being that she grew out of them and was too small to do any real damage.