Autistic Burnout

I have read autistic burnout is a real thing and I am starting to think that I am suffering from it.

I have become very sensitive to noise, light, smells etc. to the point I am having regular shutdowns and the occasional mild meltdown.  In addition, my speech has been slow/slurred and thought processes have been frustratingly fragmented and delayed/non-existent at times.  Fatigue is a big problem where I am incredibly exhausted all of the time and spend more and more of my spare time in bed.

I have sought help on multiple occasions from my GP and hospital, but I have been told there is nothing they can do.

The only time I have experienced this in the past has been when I have had a breakdown or I am going through a very stressful time, but this was before my diagnosis.

Can anyone relate to this and if so how have to managed to recover?  This particular time seems very hard to shift and managed that previous.

I am relying on sunglasses, ear plugs etc. more and more.  I am resting when possible.

Sorry if my post is fragmented - struggling to get things out today.

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  • The doctors CAN’T do anything. It’s a burn out. You need rest. It’s up to you if you take that rest but I was experiencing the same as you and it wasn’t getting any better, in fact it was getting worse. 

    That’s when I decided I was going to give my body what it needed and I went into self induced isolation. I did end up taking anti depressants towards the end for two months which was so helpful (in hindsight) but I don’t take them now.

    I’m slowly coming out of burnout and my main priority is to only ever do what I love from now on in a way which enhances and enriches my autism traits and therefore avoids burnouts in the future. This has some limitations, for example, it means I have to be aware of my sensory processing needs etc, my limits on how often I leave my house etc, how often I can be around people etc. So it’s a work in progress because when I was in burnout I couldn’t think straight at all. And since coming out of it and since diagnosis my whole life plans have changed, in terms of, I’m now going to be working with people with autism. 

    As far as I managed to find out about burnouts, it says they typically last around three years. It can’t be rushed so it might as well be enjoyed. I might not have food or whatever some days but I’m  getting the rest I need and I enjoy it. Mostly by sleeping, a lot, barely getting washed or dressed, I had no distinction between night and day, I was either in bed for days or out of bed for days. That almost total retreat from the world was bliss. This happened to me a few years ago but I lived in the middle of nowhere then, miles away from anyone I knew or my family, my nearest shop was miles away, I was in contact with nobody then, not even my son but I recovered much quicker. This time it’s taken me longer because of going into the job centre and living near my family. They couldn’t stop themselves from checking up on me etc. But I’m coming out of it now. Oh, and I watched a lot of old black and white films. YouTube is packed full of them so I never ran out of films to watch. 

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