I went out with my autism family (group) today. We went to Pizza Hut for dinner. I was really excited because one of the boys (one of my three best friends there) was going to be there and I haven’t seen him since Christmas.
I was about to sit down when I noticed one of the girls who had said she didn’t think she would make it. And before I knew it, we had both reached in and we gave each other a really big hug ~ and I loved it!!!!!
She’s a hugger anyway, but never in my life have I automatically given a hug like that! Honestly, I didn’t think I was capable! But it felt really good. It was such a good day.
Honestly, I never even knew these type of experiences existed. I’ve been out to eat with hundreds of people before now, but what I experience when I’m with these people, is unlike anything I’ve ever experienced in my life.
Or maybe I did as a little kid. Because it was weird. My friend is fussy about food and while we were all having the buffet, he was choosing something off the menu. The waitress asked him twice and he was still deciding. And I noticed, I was like a little girl, helping my friend out. I was telling the waitress to wait, while helping him. But as I was noticing it, it felt surreal.
It’s like when I’m with them, I’m this little girl, just being herself and it feels so good.
In terms of social standing, for want of a better expression, they’re nothing like me. I’ve lived such a different life to them and I’m used to earning good money. Whereas they are the opposite. They certainly don’t talk like me, or see the world like me. But none of that matters. Those things don’t even come into it.
It’s just an incredibly powerful thing that happens when I’m with them. And we’re all going ice skating next month, on my suggestion. It’s almost like being a kid for the first time, but knowing all that I know now.
I only ever remember one best friend at school. It was in my first year at school. We were such good friends. We were very naughty but I always stuck up for kids. But before the year was out. He was suddenly taken away and sent to a ‘special school’ and I never saw him again and I’ve never forgot him.
Today felt like I was back with him. I love my friend so much (new one) and I have no idea why. It’s weird. But it’s like for the first time since my little friend was taken away, I’m making new ones. Real ones. All my other friendships are real. I’m not taking anything away from them, but to be around people like me, is so precious and so important to my growth.
It’s like I’ve blossomed like a little flower, in front of their eyes, in a little over a year. They’ve seen me in so many states, including mega meltdowns and mega hyper states as well. I finally learned what it means to build friendships. Finding that group was one of the best things that ever happened to me and no matter where I might roam, I’ll never forget them. The ‘leader’ said today, we’re family, we’re more than friends. And it’s true. I don’t know how it works, but it does.
I’m really happy for you that you’re having such positive experiences
It’s the power of being round other autistic people. It blows my mind even though it all makes sense.
I’m starting to find that out myself actually by being part of this forum and I also joined the British women with Aspergers uk connect group on Facebook using my brand new ‘undercover’ Facebook profile and I’ve started posting on there too. The more I connect with other people with ASD the more so much stuff about myself makes sense and the more I feel ‘normal’ like I actually have stuff in common with people, I actually fit it somewhere, I’m no longer just some random weirdo that doesn’t fit in anywhere. Only problem is I’m starting to look at some of the NTs in my life like why are they in my life? Weirdos!
lol! I don’t really have many nt’s in my life now, and the ones I do, I either love because they’re my family or they’re helpful to me in some way. I don’t hang out with them, I only hang out with other autistics now and that’s how I like it. I don’t dislike nt’s, on the contrary, in fact, I’m super happy as I’ve just got a message from my new autism plus worker, so I start sessions again on Monday, and the church people are being super helpful to me as well, so I find nt people super super helpful in my life, but I don’t hang out with them, lol, that pleasure is reserved solely for autistics or my family.
It’s amazing isnt it. All the unseen, unspoken benefits, of friendships and being part of you’re own tribe, is life changing for sure. I’ve never read anything that explicitly talks about these unseen benefits. I guess they are just simply taken for granted because they’re such a big part of most people’s lives.
If it wasn’t for my support worker encouraging me to keep going to the group and to keep in touch with my new friends, I wouldn’t have done. It was all very nice and all that but I like being by myself so I just didn’t see the point of it, but I trusted my support worker so I kept going and boy am I glad I did the benefits are priceless and they’re worth the effort I have to make to leave my own, perfectly sublime and most exquisite company
It sounds like you have a pretty amazing support worker?
I think maybe that the need to start hanging out with fellow people with ASD is all part of the journey that we go on post diagnosis. It’s brilliant that we can all support each other in that journey on here too. But yes weird that no one bothers to tell us that we will benefit from spending time with our own tribe, we just have to work it out for ourselves.
i’m still going to go to the social group near me when there is a 1st Wednesday of the month that falls in the school holidays. But in the meantime I’m contemplating starting a fb Group specifically for people that live in my area, partly for my own needs but partly as at 1 in 67 I calculate there must be nearly 2,000 people in my town with ASD yet only one measly support/social group for AS once a month. It feels we are being short changed somewhat!