I'm sorry I keep bothering people with these posts. I've had a really bad day today. I had someone email me back, hoping that he would continue the conversation but he replied hoping that everything would continue to be well, ending the conversation at just that. I just wanted to scream at him because the exact opposite was happening. There are so many bad memories that keep haunting me and I need to get them out. I haven't felt okay in a long time and I feel this the only place I get this out.
I've felt constantly alone. For eighteen years, I've felt controlled and manipulated by my parents. They have been extremely controlling and disrespectful of my autism. I had a mother who constantly controlled what I did and a father who only got involved when he wanted to. He has never taken any interests in anything I like, when I used to do homework or was at the dinner table he was always half there, the only time he stepped out of that was when I did something wrong or to rant about something. Both my parents had a go at me every time my autism got the best of me. They forced me to talk when there was nothing wrong. There was a time I didn't want to go to a school dance and my dad questioned me constantly until I said something. I was confronted with so many things. It put me on the spot, which made me anxious and difficult to speak which made it hard to talk. They raised their voices until I said something that got me off their back. They got angry very easily, and they always took it out on me, whether it was because I laughed too loudly or made a tiny mistake, they were always there to pick up on it.
My dad was the worst out of the two, and my mother just simply followed him. No matter how many times I tell my mum that something my dad did was wrong, she would always stand by his side. They both used my DLA for their own purposes. They only told me that I had one at the age of eighteen and even then, I didn't get my full entitlement until I was 21, almost a year ago. They took the longest route possible to get it sorted. My dad always said he was for bills but then, a few hours later, he would brag about getting a new tv or car, not because there was anything wrong with them, it was simply because he wanted a new one. He always yelled at me and made me feel so guilty when I needed the money. I needed to re-take my A-level exams because my anxiety got in the way, and I got so scared to talk about it with my parents because would shout at me for it and guilty for needing money.
It wasn't just them either. I was bullied constantly, by other students and even teachers. Particularly at primary school, I had to have a teaching assistant/SENCO by my side to watch over me. I had to be put in groups with her, not groups that suited my academic abilities and was pushed back. People constantly left me out. There were teachers, particularly the headmistress who absolutely hated my guts. The moment I did something wrong, she was there to pick on it. There was a time when I did a play and they rewarded us with pencils. Being in year 3, I was one of the last ones to choose a pencil. I really wanted a certain pencil but they didn't have them so I walked out without one. The headmistress told the whole of KS2 that two people didn't take pencils. I was yelled at by the headmistress, by a few teaching assistants. I had the whole of KS2 stare at me while the headmistress pointed at me and had a go at me. It was the same day that kids, including my younger brother, from playgroup, were shown around the school. No one told me, it was naturally assumed that I was supposed to show him around. No one told me of this, or what I was supposed to do in these situations, people assumed I knew and had a go at me for not doing it. At home, my parents sent me to my room and yelled at me for all of this. I felt I was constantly watched both at school and at home and any time I talked to someone about it, even when it came out okay, they reported it back to my parents.
My brother was always favoured over me, particularly with my dad. He doesn't have any neurological issues. Every time I did something wrong, my brother always told me. We were both allowed to go on school trips, I wanted to go to either one of two options, America which was about £700. This was the first one I wanted to go to but my parents said no. I was allowed to go to the other one which was half that amount but when it was my brother's turn, he was allowed to go on a trip which was as expensive as the trip to America. He always fitted in at school and was able to always talk conversations that my parents discussed, which usually involved my dad constantly slagging someone off from work. My parents took more of an interest in my brother's interests compared to mine. I always felt like the outsider. All the things they find funny I find immature. My dad even had a go at me for being the immature one and used it as an excuse to keep me from going to university.
My parents were never considerate of my autism, or anything else for that matter. Despite having a neurological disorder that improves my memory, they always forced me to be normal. I was forced to drive and get a job at the age of 16 even I was not ready. I was forced to go to school despite having anxiety attacks before I left. They pushed me to go on the pill and have counselling when I was showing signs of depression. My mum forced me to go to an autistic specialist with her in the room. I didn't want to talk, not when she was in the room manipulating my words and my emotions. They never took an interest in anything I was interested in, even when I took an interest in the things they liked. They would have sex and constantly walked around the house naked when I was little. They weren't discreet and I have had several occasions where I walked into them doing it.
Even now, every time I tell someone I am autistic, they push back. They run. Even if they think they can be around me, when my autism gets the best of me they either yell and or push away. I'm at university doing my Masters degree and I haven't told anyone for this reason. I know that it may help some people understand some things better about me but I really don't want people to know. When I was young, my parents always told people I was on the spectrum, they even treated it like gossip. I even had a really controlling friend who always treated me like my SENCO and constantly used me and made me feel so incredibly small. There were times I got in trouble with her. There was a time we did a science experiment wrong and the teacher screamed at us for not getting it right. I'm high on the spectrum so when I tell people, it came as a surprise when I told them. People either saw me as normal and got annoyed when my autism got the best of me or just saw the autism and nothing else. Its hard because its horrible inside my head and I can't escape it.
I live on the other side of the country but I still don't feel like I can ever run away from them. If I run, they would make me feel like I was in the wrong and my parents would just tell everyone that I was in the wrong. I feel forced to go to gathering like their birthdays and Christmas. My family is full of nothing but toxic relationships. Eighteen years of my life feels distant and toxic and, despite studying my second degree, I still feel like I haven't escaped it all.
I'm sorry for the long rant, but does anyone else associate with some of these issues?
And thank you for being such a lovely community. Thank you for always responding to my forums and making me feel like I matter. Thank you for being so supportive and kind, particularly on bad days like this, I really appreciate everything every single one of you do and I think you all are amazing. Thank you for your support.
The first thing you need to know is this:
You are stronger than you think.
You live independently on the other side of the country.
You are studying for second degree.
You had the strength of character to join this forum and tell us all your experience.
Life can be hard for those on the spectrum. Especially as we can be taken advantage of easily.
But take heart from the knowledge you are strong!