Both sides of the Bristol Channel

Anyone on this site living south of the Bristol Channel. Wales is also another possible area. I live on the other side of the World, but occasionally visit my old stomping grounds for a month or two at a time. I have almost zero support/acknowledgment where I live for my fairly recent diagnosis. I have yet to be in contact with any support groups in the named UK areas (where I previously lived) but I rather like the idea of perhaps meeting up with someone in those areas and perhaps attending a few support group activities together, or just engaging in some outdoor/countryside pursuits/voluntary activities - the next time I'm in the UK. I suppose you might call me the outdoor type; although rock climbing is definitely not on the list.

As the name says, I'm past retirement age, male, married. I intend to visit my home country in the next year or two, but that should leave loads of time for a few communications first. It's a small country, so it is quite possible that I know someone you know, as you will inevitably have some security concerns. Indeed, I would actually like to know how many of my former acquaintances have also received a diagnosis. Thinking back over the past, it is almost certain that I have known quite a few UK people on the spectrum in the past; people with whom I obviously had quite a lot in common. But after so many years abroad, I have few such contacts left. PMs or public replies welcome! :-)

  • Obviously at some point I would have to divulge my true identity, and also some means of checking my reputation. But I also feel it would be better to only meet up in a public place with lots of other people around. I should also add that not everyone in my family is aware of my diagnosis. There are some sound reasons for that. I would also travel alone to the UK, as my partner doesn't really like the country much, and is also very loathe to acknowledge that I might have a few issues that  need addressing. I would dearly like to communicate/meet up with someone in this manner in my current country of residence, but to keep a long story short that is not a practical scenario. But I have tried, several times. Catch 22.

  • The idea of either side of the water was so that I did not have to wander too far afield from the areas I generally stay in the UK. Lack of response suggests some modification of that idea. It occurs to me that I might be better off attending a support group connected to my diagnostician's clinic, as I have been able to watch, and listen to some of their activities, and can see they definitely merit further attention. I have been told that I would be welcome, and as far as I know, an assessment at that clinic is not a prerequisite for attendance. But I will check to make sure visitors are welcome. Support group meetings are held in a public space, not at the clinic itself; but even some distance from it. So lets add Cheshire/North Wales to that list of areas. I don't want to locate the area too accurately, as that might also be a bit limiting. But it might also make some people feel more secure to meet at a public event. That event could also be a conference or seminar.

    I can see that many of my past actions have not been particularly conducive to long-term friendship. That said, I'm not really renowned for causing a major stir. Things must have been quite well hidden, if so many people continue to think my life was some kind of swell experience. It tends to be that I decide (rather passively) it is time to move on when I get the impression that I'm no longer in the right place. (But it is definite that I will continue to live abroad.) I suppose I'm inclined to see 'letters' as a rather substitute for F2F. A great deal of my education has been distance education, and I think I need a bit of a break from that. But there are actually quite a lot of things about my home country and my country of residence, and their people, that I genuinely appreciate. And I think most of my former friends are still friends; we just don't have a huge amount in common anymore.. And I have ceased caring about some former adversaries anyway. I'm no longer locked into the constant necessity to move around to impress people with my supposed career worthiness; something that definitely did not work terribly well. It seems like it is actually a good time to get a bit of a life before the senior thing goes too much further.