OT - creative (but isolated and severely depressed) Asperger adult at end of rope, seeks advice

Outré LimitsOutré Limits Posts: 49
edited December 1969 in The Commons

Hi all,

I am at a point where I need some guidance. I have Asperger syndrome, but am functional enough to not quality for help, but too dysfunctional to pass job interviews. I had a job I could do, but it got outsourced (and frankly was killing me). I used to do remote tech support for 3 major retail office supply chains. Where I live, I have a stable house, but there are no jobs here. My main (and, stupidly on my part, only) backup plan failed (working with a friend on a Poser store). There are no creative people here, there are no gay or genderqueer people here. There are no real nerds here, only people who play video games. I have made many efforts to reach out as best I can, to no avail. The only social outlets are all online, and those do nothing for me (something I found out while working a job from home). My parents moved here when I was in college, so I do not know anyone that isn't family. I turned 34 less than a month ago, but still basically feel like a teenager/somewhere in my 20s (mentally I'm not, though). My family loves me, but they do not understand or know how to deal with what I have going on. My mother thinks it's simple for me to "just get a job", but even without all that I have going on, it's not an option here. I am at a loss for what to do, and would appreciate the advice of any adult working through severe social retardation (and that's what it is.. I am far, far behind where I should be on social skills, and I don't know that my brain is wired in a way that I can pick them up). What do I do? Everyone says to talk about it when you're depressed and considering your final options, but nobody actually ever wants to hear it, or has any good advice. Please help. I know I do not participate on here as much as I could (but I don't participate anywhere really, as I am stuck in my head most of the time, even when I don't want to be). I don't know what to do and nobody here knows what to do.

Thank you.

«1

Comments

  • Subtropic PixelSubtropic Pixel Posts: 778
    edited December 1969

    I know you said that online solutions haven't helped you, but if you have no access to real live people, then I suggest you check out dailystrength.org, at least as a start. They helped me when I had postsurgery problems a few years ago.

    If as you say, all you have is family that loves you, then you have a lot more than many. But I understand that they are not mental health professionals.

    I am also not equipped to help you with your specific condition, and I suspect that many here are not either. But the community at dailystrength truly is a COMMUNITY, and surely there will be people there who will understand what you are going through. I can say from experience that you don't have to be "socially skilled" to jump in and relate. If your situation is truly dire, then you'll need to find a longer-term way to get help, probably from a professional. This might mean that you'll need to leave your physical geographic location, family, and community to do that.

    You need to decide on your priorities, then focus on doing things in the most sensible order for yourself. As for the job situation, you might need to work on yourself first; regain your mental health. Hopefully your finances will hold out through this. Then when it comes time to find work, you'll need to see what's available. If it turns out your current perception is correct and there are few to zero opportunities where you live now, then you'll need to be willing and able to relocate to someplace where there are more opportunities. The animals have been migrating for millennia, and we humans sometimes need to do so too. :-)

    I sincerely wish you the best of luck. Let me know how dailystrength works out for you. At least you have identified and even verbalized a problem here and you know that something needs to change. That's a great start. Hopefully DailyStrength will help you move to the next phase.

  • sfaa69sfaa69 Posts: 254
    edited December 1969

    Sometimes it seems there is nothing easier than giving people advice. But when somebody has a real need for expert guidance, those of us who do not have the background, either through personal experience or professional training, are not doing any favors by offering advice. So I am not going to give you advice, but I will send my sincere wishes that you find a solution that meets your needs.

  • Scott LivingstonScott Livingston Posts: 4,104
    edited December 1969

    Hi, Outré Limits. I'm about to turn in for the night but I just wanted to briefly drop a quick note to know that someone is listening. :) It probably took a lot of courage to reach out in this way - I know in the past when I've had to seek help it was an uncomfortable experience, but ultimately liberating.

  • DAZ_ann0314DAZ_ann0314 Posts: 1,526
    edited August 2014

    You'll find there are a fair bit of people online that have Aspergers. . my 16 yr old son and my husband both have been diagnosed as having a similar issue PDD-NOS. I know how hard both struggle and also realize just how difficult putting yourself out there to make this thread must have been for you as well ((HUG))

    As far as jobs etc go, you could possibly try a job where you can work for yourself and alone for now (being a PA is one like that) You could also possibly find some of the online communities for those with Aspergers to get more feedback from others who have gone through or are going though the same things. They may be able to give you some advice (or someone on her may be able to) that can help you choose a course to take that works best for you.

    You could also possibly try looking here: http://www.autismspeaks.org/family-services/community-connections/employment-opportunities-individuals-autism The site covers all autism spectrum disorders including PDD-NOS, Aspergers, Autism etc. There is a lot of great info on this site in general (a lot of extra advice etc in the comments as well) This: http://www.autismspeaks.org/what-autism/asperger-syndrome may be good to show to your family as well to possibly help them understand you better and what you are going though. There is also this 100 day packet on this site that is really excellent and has a really great PDF that would be worth family reading. I know it helped me understand a fair bit and see things differently. You could also try looking here as well http://www.autismspeaks.org/family-services/adult-services/autism-and-employment Im not sure if you are in the US or not but even if not maybe it can help give you some ideas you've not considered.

    I would say more but I am running late to bed but I'll post more tomorrow...just hang in there. There are many many people that share your struggles and some have been exactly where you are right now...talking about it as best you can and seeking out those who are going through similar things that can help be supportive, point you in possible directions you hadn't considered etc is all a really wonderful (and courageous) step in the right direction. BIG HUGS!

    Post edited by DAZ_ann0314 on
  • JaguarEllaJaguarElla Posts: 10,392
    edited December 1969

    You have the most important skill on your resume
    A desire to work
    Many do not have that
    I am in Australia so cannot help with your system of employment I am afraid
    But what one would do here in your situation is find an employment agency
    They find a job for you suited to your skills, you actually work for them, the company employing you pays them and they keep a percentage.
    I am guessing you are in the US and as well as the suggestions given some may be able to share other ones too.
    In any case a well set out resume is your first step
    Send it to as many places as possible

  • DAZ_ann0314DAZ_ann0314 Posts: 1,526
    edited December 1969

    PS where are you from? I read through twice and am not seeing it...I may be able to find you more help or direct you to some better resource possibly. I know how bad my son's social phobia is (to the point they said atm they don't want him to even attempt to get a job..that he needed a fair bit more counceling and practicing certain interactions etc before that would be recommended..atm he's too freaked out to even get his license etc :() but so I've done a fair bit of reading and looking for help and information etc so maybe I'll be able to point you in a better direction :)

  • RCDescheneRCDeschene Posts: 2,086
    edited August 2014

    First of all, let me just say that you are NOT retarded for being Asperger's! I myself am Autistic/Asperger's Syndrome and I too suffer from sever Clinical Depression (as well as Anxiety). In fact, I'm suicidal type of depressed. However, I'm willing enough to share that I do receive government aid along with my (very unstable) income as a freelancer spiritual consultant (you can probably imagine how successful that is).

    Why am I sharing all of this on here? Because you sound just like a couple of friends who I recently helped with a very similar situation and I helped them get what she needed based on the same way I did it. First and foremost of all, get your doctor on-board. The government is much more compliant to agree to aid if you have recommendation from medical authority. A lawyer wouldn't hurt too much, either. The bigger you make your case, the better it helps you.

    Second of all, and this one may be hard to comprehend or even accept at first, and I totally understand if you don't want to believe me, but depending on where you live, especially if you live in the United States, can and will have impact on how easy or hard it will be for you to get what you need. Here in the US, if you live in a more Red/Conservative state, chances are you'll have a harder time getting the system to work with you where politics there frown upon such entitlements. Me and one of the aforementioned friends are lucky enough to live in Massachusetts, the Bluest state in the Union, so the application process was much smoother for both of us. However, for my other friend who lives in Florida, he had to go as far as take it to court. That's why I said having a lawyer is sometimes helpful.

    However, if you're prouder than that, then what Subtropic Pixel suggested is more of the alternative course you should take. Whether or not you pursue work, I think this is still something you should seriously have in your corner.

    Post edited by RCDeschene on
  • Eva1Eva1 Posts: 469
    edited December 1969

    Hi Outre. I really don't know anything about aspergers so am not qualified to give any guidance in that respect:(

    I think the web could be one of the greatest tools for you work wise and socially too - you say that online social outlets haven't worked , but virtual worlds might be helpful if you've not tried that yet. For example Second Life has a lot of different communities and support groups , and there is a Aspergers support group there. This link gives a brief introduction to the group: https://my.secondlife.com/groups/8400b8ca-f198-4677-249c-7ef0c5745c8e. A virtual world can be a great way to socialise without having the same pressures of socialising face-to-face , plus it can be really enjoyable to explore other people's arts and creativity too, and to create things yourself (now I am speaking from experience :) ) There are a lot of articles online about virtual worlds helping people with aspergers that you can google.

    A really useful exercise can be to write down all the things you can do, have experience with, and are good at. Any of those things in that list can be turned into a service you could offer freelance to others, or used to make something you can sell to others - the trick is putting it together in a viable way - but then again people do it all the time, and with your desire to work I don't think you should give up. Your Poser store may not have worked, but maybe something else will (every successful entrepreneur has had failures!).

    Don't give up Outre - keep exploring possibilities, keep reaching out...you never know what tomorrow brings!:):)
    I sincerely wish you all the best in finding solutions.
    PS have PM'd you too.

  • karibousboutiquekaribousboutique Posts: 848
    edited December 1969

    Oh... I wish I could have a real, live conversation with you and give you a (perhaps socially awkward, but still heartfelt) hug! I, myself, have experienced absolute deepest depression, and I'm completely neurotypical. My heart goes out to you because I cannot imagine how much harder it is when your brain is wired differently and social things don't come easily in the first place. Truly, some of the dearest people to me are on the spectrum, and that's not an exaggeration. My son is far past Asperger's (high functioning, but classic autism), but I mentor a robotics team where we have students (and probably a few mentors!) with Asperger Syndrome. I've been a teacher for over a decade, and it frustrates me to no end that the average person doesn't understand what having an Asperger brain means. It isn't a disability on it's own, but when uninformed or misinformed or just insensitive people are involved, it can become disabling. People can be very cruel, and even worse when they're in groups of like-minded people. And, of course, they're the WORST when they're in a group of people who feel free to degrade you based on other personality facets -- being gay, or artistic, or liberal, or the wrong race, etc., etc., etc. I wish I could REALLY help, but all I can offer is some advice. I have a few thoughts...

    First -- Depression is horrible, but YOU aren't horrible -- you're currently facing a lot of challenges, but *you* aren't "wrong." It's understandable that you feel so terrible at the moment. So begin by giving yourself a break. It sounds ridiculous and cheesy, but when I was in the depths of depression, I was told to write ONE good thing about myself every day. Just one thing. Could be something really, really small, like "I love my family," or "I am #45 in the whole world on the Rock Band charts for the vocals on 'Me and Bobby McGee.'" (which I am, lol!) If you add just ONE thing to it every day, the list grows. Then, objectively, you're forced to acknowledge that you're not a terrible person. This is a good place to start. Understand your strengths and value them. You'll need that when you look for employment.

    Secondly -- have you tried to locate a local Autism Society chapter? Lemme tell ya, I'm a pretty self-sufficient person, but when life tossed autism in my lap, I was bewildered. And there isn't an instruction manual. My local Autism Society has a HUGE array of helpful activities and they aren't all kid-centered. They have adult groups who meet for social outings (coffee, karaoke, bowling, etc.) and "support groups." (Though I hate that term, because it sounds like you suffer from something horrible.) I, personally, am blessed that my son is high enough on the spectrum to be verbal, but low enough that he qualifies for services and frankly doesn't care what anyone else thinks. In any event, the Autism Society has been an amazing resource for me and my son. If nothing else, there will be people there who don't under-value you because of your brain wiring, even if they're NT.

    Third -- you don't have to have a disability to qualify for "services." Specifically, there are LOTS of public and non-profit places that can help you find jobs. I would know -- also recently unemployed, also faced the disabled-but-not conundrum (though mine was mental illness, not Aspergers.) And, as a middle-class, straight, white girl from the suburbs with a Master's degree, lemme tell ya, I did NOT think I'd ever be on food stamps. But I was. And it fed me and my kids, taking one more thing off my mind and out of the budget. I know you're a single person, so the "bar" for qualifying for assistance is pretty darn low, but it's worth looking into. By the way, if you think you're the most socially-awkward looking for employment, let me assure you: You aren't. Remember what I said about your strengths? You have them. You have weaknesses too, but we ALL do. It's part of being human. There are, as I said, some really cruel people out there, but there are also some amazingly good ones. When I called about food assistance, I felt about as small as a person could feel. But the woman on the other end of the phone, bless her heart, was kind and compassionate and funny -- and she offered real, concrete advice. "Hey, you're a teacher? I hear so-and-so is hiring." She had no idea who I was, but she cared anyway. There ARE people out there like that, and they'll appreciate you for yourself when you find them. Don't give up.

    Last -- Your family almost certainly can't understand what you're feeling. But they do love you. And when *I* was at about the worst possible place a person can be, the one thing that kept me, well, HERE was my mom. And prior to me going crazy (a term I lovingly use because I've earned it), Mom and I were NOT close. But when the rest of the world exits-stage-right, you suddenly see who's still with you. Remember that your family may not understand you, but they DO love you and they probably know you in ways that nobody else does. They may not know you "better" than anyone, but they do know you "differently."

    I know we aren't "real" people, the way that non-online people are... but I hope that the words we offer can help you through this very difficult patch. Don't give up. You're worth it!

  • Rashad CarterRashad Carter Posts: 1,034
    edited December 1969

    I have a few things to share with you. But first; a little humor to lighten the mood...

    Rick and his chick
    Were choosing a flick
    She couldn't decide
    So she chose his ____!

    Now to the advice.

    I aint no doctor and I aint no priest. I aint gonna shrink your head or tell you to pray it away. Some people think I'm a meanie, but really, I just don't have patience for the BS; my own or anyone elses for that matter. I'm not going to sugar coat anything because that would be insulting. Instead I'm going to offer you the common sense advice I have offered to several other individuals who found themselves in a position similar to yours. I'd say a vast number of my closest personal friends deal with issues like this.

    And do realize, you are sooooooooooo NOT ALONE!!! Most of us have been there at some point or other, people just don't usually admit to it.

    1. Reject the Labels
    The good thing about modern medicine is that there is a level of awareness that previous generations didn't have. But it comes at the cost of "labels."

    Labels can be a very dangerous thing, deadly even, so REJECT THEM. I don't mean to imply that you should ignore a clinical diagnosis from a trained professional. I'm not saying you should stop taking your medications. What I am saying is that you need to reject the "weight" these labels would place onto you, because this weight is unbearable, and dangerous.

    Okay, so as a kid the psychiatrist told you that you suffered from Asperger's, another counselor may have said you had an attention deficit, and a teacher once may have said that you were socially retarded. Another person said this and another person said that... After several years, you find that several "knowledgeable people" have labelled you and these labels determine more about you than any other individual traits you may posses.

    Now I ask you, what exactly is the purpose of a label? It is my opinion that labels are things people use to help them in how they deal with another person. "Labels" are tools that other people have used to help them in how they interacted with you. The problem with labels comes when we adopt those labels into our own thinking about ourselves."Labels are of no use to us when it comes to how we deal with ourselves."

    How is a person expected to learn to love and value themselves when all they've been told for a lifetime is that there is something about them that is irreparable broken? Simply making it out of the womb is no guarantee that one will love and value themselves. Self respect and self love MUST BE EARNED on a daily basis just like any other type of respect or love. What is a person to do when they have been taught to question the validity of every thought and feeling they have ever experienced? "I like coffee, at least I think I do, but maybe I need to ask my psychiatrist to be sure." Such is no way to live a life. If you accept the labels and that there is indeed something broken within you, then you will never have the self respect and self love needed to weather the storms of adult life. Adult life is often about withstanding ego destroying experiences, it's tough. An adult HAS to BELIEVE in himself, he MUST TRUST in himself...or he has nothing.

    What no one seems to want to observe is that the labels people put onto others, children especially, become like a huge weight on a person's shoulders, literally keeping them down and pressing them into the Earth.

    Never allow yourself to see yourself as "socially retarded." When you are sitting in a room being interviewed by a potential employer this is not the time to have the "I'm a social retard" song playing in the back of your head. Instead, at a time such as this you should be focused on how much of an asset you can be to this employer, and how, regardless of how this interview turns out, that you will continue to love yourself regardless.

    Look into history and you will find that many of the people who have shaped the world were people who had been labelled as broken in some way by their peers, but chose to reject those labels and to rise above them. That is my advice to you, reject the labels.

    Who you are on the inside means much more than who you are on the outside. Focus on who you are on the INSIDE.

    Starting this very moment Mr Outre Limits, you are no longer socially retarded. Starting this very moment, you are no longer irreparable broken. From this moment forward, your future is determined by you, and not the labels people have tried to saddle you with. You deserve success and happiness as much as the next guy. Your pain is just as real as the next guy, and so is your joy. You deserve to be happy and to feel good about being happy. Free yourself!

    Starting NOW!

    2. One Problem can have Many Symptoms
    Know the difference between a problem and a mere symptom of a problem. Don't waste your time trying to fix the symptoms until you have determined what the real underlying problems are. Observing the root problem will always require more effort than observing the symptoms.

    First off, even the most psychologically healthy individuals would still find not having work and not wanting to continue living at home with our parents as depressing. These feelings are normal to most people, I don't think Asperger's is going to be the root cause, though it may certainly help to exacerbate the problem.

    Sadness, depression, and scary thoughts; are all symptoms of a deeper problem. The deeper problem is likely a lack of self respect and self acceptance as I detailed above. What causes the problem of lack of self acceptance? Typically, it is when we decide that we are not worthy of being loved because we are Asperger's, or because we are gay, or overweight, or whatever. Love is for other people...the normal ones...the very same ones who have often rejected and mistreated me for being different. Sometimes we get depressed because we don't see any manner for us to fit ourselves into society. We don't truly fit with family at home, we don't connect with outsiders as friends, and often, we beat ourselves up with our own unconscious minds constantly feeding us self deprecating thoughts. Realize that the feeling of being trapped on this planet....that even though Earth is a huge planet there is not a single square inch of it that is safe for you, where you would be loved; these feelings are actually symptoms, they aren't really the problem.

    Being homosexual in a repressed righteous environment, I know how this can marginalize a person. Society at large still looks down on people who have alternative sexual preferences and they often use God to justify the hatred, making us feel even more hopeless, so it is no surprise that most homosexual people experience some form of severe depression at one point or other in their lives. The depression is a symptom of their declining self love and their increasing self hatred, not the other way around. Many homosexual people including myself have considered that maybe it would be easier for everyone if we just didn't exist anymore. This is a very dark place, not something I would wish onto anyone, not even an enemy honestly. Again this is an example of what harm labels can do.

    3. Embrace the LOVE
    A funny thing happens once you free yourself from the weight of those silly labels. All of a sudden, your focus shifts from always being preoccupied with what is wrong with you to finally being re-occupied with what is RIGHT with you.

    I don't know you personally. so it is impossible for me to accurately describe for you what is right with you. And that is a good thing. It is now time for you to learn how to label yourself, in POSITIVE ways. Labels such as "I'm hard working, I'm honest, I'm fair, I'm intelligent I'm beautiful, I'm WORTHY, these are the labels that WILL help you in how you deal with yourself. Adopt these labels, and you will feel better I'm sure of it.

    Now, I live in NYC, and at times this can be the gayest place on the planet. Sooo darned gay, let me tell you. Gay gay gay gay and it is AWESOME. A city full of people who have rejected the labels that would lead them to hate themselves.

    Come and visit anytime. Check your PM for my personal contact information.

    And lastly, best of luck my friend. Good of you to reach out as you did. I hope this thread demonstrates if nothing more that you are not alone not in your pain or in your joy. Let me know when you arrive in Penn Station NYC so I can pick you up and show you around town.

    Later.

  • Rashad CarterRashad Carter Posts: 1,034
    edited December 1969

    Oh... I wish I could have a real, live conversation with you and give you a (perhaps socially awkward, but still heartfelt) hug! I, myself, have experienced absolute deepest depression, and I'm completely neurotypical. My heart goes out to you because I cannot imagine how much harder it is when your brain is wired differently and social things don't come easily in the first place. Truly, some of the dearest people to me are on the spectrum, and that's not an exaggeration. My son is far past Asperger's (high functioning, but classic autism), but I mentor a robotics team where we have students (and probably a few mentors!) with Asperger Syndrome. I've been a teacher for over a decade, and it frustrates me to no end that the average person doesn't understand what having an Asperger brain means. It isn't a disability on it's own, but when uninformed or misinformed or just insensitive people are involved, it can become disabling. People can be very cruel, and even worse when they're in groups of like-minded people. And, of course, they're the WORST when they're in a group of people who feel free to degrade you based on other personality facets -- being gay, or artistic, or liberal, or the wrong race, etc., etc., etc. I wish I could REALLY help, but all I can offer is some advice. I have a few thoughts...

    First -- Depression is horrible, but YOU aren't horrible -- you're currently facing a lot of challenges, but *you* aren't "wrong." It's understandable that you feel so terrible at the moment. So begin by giving yourself a break. It sounds ridiculous and cheesy, but when I was in the depths of depression, I was told to write ONE good thing about myself every day. Just one thing. Could be something really, really small, like "I love my family," or "I am #45 in the whole world on the Rock Band charts for the vocals on 'Me and Bobby McGee.'" (which I am, lol!) If you add just ONE thing to it every day, the list grows. Then, objectively, you're forced to acknowledge that you're not a terrible person. This is a good place to start. Understand your strengths and value them. You'll need that when you look for employment.

    Secondly -- have you tried to locate a local Autism Society chapter? Lemme tell ya, I'm a pretty self-sufficient person, but when life tossed autism in my lap, I was bewildered. And there isn't an instruction manual. My local Autism Society has a HUGE array of helpful activities and they aren't all kid-centered. They have adult groups who meet for social outings (coffee, karaoke, bowling, etc.) and "support groups." (Though I hate that term, because it sounds like you suffer from something horrible.) I, personally, am blessed that my son is high enough on the spectrum to be verbal, but low enough that he qualifies for services and frankly doesn't care what anyone else thinks. In any event, the Autism Society has been an amazing resource for me and my son. If nothing else, there will be people there who don't under-value you because of your brain wiring, even if they're NT.

    Third -- you don't have to have a disability to qualify for "services." Specifically, there are LOTS of public and non-profit places that can help you find jobs. I would know -- also recently unemployed, also faced the disabled-but-not conundrum (though mine was mental illness, not Aspergers.) And, as a middle-class, straight, white girl from the suburbs with a Master's degree, lemme tell ya, I did NOT think I'd ever be on food stamps. But I was. And it fed me and my kids, taking one more thing off my mind and out of the budget. I know you're a single person, so the "bar" for qualifying for assistance is pretty darn low, but it's worth looking into. By the way, if you think you're the most socially-awkward looking for employment, let me assure you: You aren't. Remember what I said about your strengths? You have them. You have weaknesses too, but we ALL do. It's part of being human. There are, as I said, some really cruel people out there, but there are also some amazingly good ones. When I called about food assistance, I felt about as small as a person could feel. But the woman on the other end of the phone, bless her heart, was kind and compassionate and funny -- and she offered real, concrete advice. "Hey, you're a teacher? I hear so-and-so is hiring." She had no idea who I was, but she cared anyway. There ARE people out there like that, and they'll appreciate you for yourself when you find them. Don't give up.

    Last -- Your family almost certainly can't understand what you're feeling. But they do love you. And when *I* was at about the worst possible place a person can be, the one thing that kept me, well, HERE was my mom. And prior to me going crazy (a term I lovingly use because I've earned it), Mom and I were NOT close. But when the rest of the world exits-stage-right, you suddenly see who's still with you. Remember that your family may not understand you, but they DO love you and they probably know you in ways that nobody else does. They may not know you "better" than anyone, but they do know you "differently."

    I know we aren't "real" people, the way that non-online people are... but I hope that the words we offer can help you through this very difficult patch. Don't give up. You're worth it!

    We cross posted. I like how we have similar advice about affirming oneself as an essential step toward long term self healing. Daily affirmations really do work!!

  • karibousboutiquekaribousboutique Posts: 848
    edited December 1969

    We cross posted. I like how we have similar advice about affirming oneself as an essential step toward long term self healing. Daily affirmations really do work!!

    Agreed. And there's a LOT of other amazing wisdom in your advice -- I especially love what you've said about labels: “Labels are of no use to us when it comes to how we deal with ourselves.” So, so true!! Labels are great if they come with services -- as a mom, I've embraced the label because it gives my son an aide for the whole school day, and speech therapy, and behavior plans... but I pray that I never give my son -- or anyone else! -- the impression that my son is defined by his autism. Truth told, Ev fights with his twin sister, likes video games, loves pizza, hates math, and a few million other things that ANY ten-year-old experiences. He isn't my autistic son. He's just my son.

    Outré Limits, I do sincerely hope you feel a little of the encouragement we're sending. You aren't defined by any of the labels attached to you. You're just YOU -- complete with strengths and flaws, likes and dislikes, and the entire range of emotions that we all feel... So, "Embrace the LOVE." Because you're worth it!!

  • mrposermrposer Posts: 764
    edited December 1969

    My only expertise with Asperger syndrome is from watching Parenthood tv show.... but I would suggest using its strengths...the part that focuses your brain to get specialized technical skills you enjoy and make you more job marketable(check job ads for skills they are looking for the most).....then get a social script together with a resume and somehow get past the HR wall to get to speak to a technical manager who doesn't care about your people skills but really wants your technical skills. You mentioned gay people ... not sure if you meant yourself... but if that is the case move to major city... Atlanta, Dallas, Boston, Chicago, LA, or the promised land of SF. You probably will find better Asperger resources with real group contacts in a major city.

    From your post you seem to have alot you can use to build on... your talent, your youth, loving parents, and an artistic view of the world. Best of luck!

  • icprncssicprncss Posts: 3,444
    edited December 1969

    Advise someone you do not know is easy but often does not help. You have family. Have you actually sat down and talked to your mother or other family members about what is bothering you? It may seem like they won't understand or can't understand but they may surprise you. It may take more than once but if you give up after the first try...

    If you are having difficulty finding a job, try volunteering. I know it doesn't pay money but it will pay off in other ways. It will get you out of the four walls. It will get you interacting with others. It will give you a chance to see the world "in action". It will give you something to do that you can take pride in.

    If family and friends or acquaintances aren't enough help, then maybe it's time to seek professional help. Make some calls. Try to find one who has some experience treating your issues. If nothing else, making the calls and asking the questions is good practice.

    I don't have your issues. It's easy for me to tell you these things. It's much more difficult for you.

  • RawArtRawArt Posts: 2,630
    edited December 1969

    When you are on the spectrum and are trying to find work, it is not so much about finding a job and keeping a job, but more about finding your specific niche and developing that.
    It often takes a long time for someone on the spectrum to truely find something they enjoy which can make them money. Those two dont often go hand in hand. SO until that time it is best to not think about jobs as long-term work, just look for short term things that will give you many different experiences, from which you can learn what suits your particular psychological niche and see which of them are something that could actually generate an income.

    I learned about poser from one of my short term contracts, and after 10 years of building off the hobby I enjoyed, I am now using it to support my family.
    (But during that 10 years, I had many other jobs in between, just to pay the bills and "live")

    So try not to dwell on an immediate career choice, take time to explore your job choices, until you find something your really have the skills for and want to grow into.

  • Outré LimitsOutré Limits Posts: 49
    edited December 1969

    Thank you all. I am humbled by your love and guidance. I will read these responses (and the PMs) and think on them and .. well I am really not sure what to say yet, but thank you.

  • SickleYieldSickleYield Posts: 5,993
    edited December 1969

    Thank you all. I am humbled by your love and guidance. I will read these responses (and the PMs) and think on them and .. well I am really not sure what to say yet, but thank you.

    I have nothing useful to add - I'm glad people with family who share your situation have posted. I just wanted to give some more affirmation. When you're very depressed (and I have been - I think you'll find that in any group who works online, more than half have been) it's hard to see there being any hope or possibility of improvement. Sometimes you have to remind yourself that it's your own brain chemistry making a hard situation worse, and that the universe is not as dreadful as you're made to feel that it is. Hang on.

  • arcadyarcady Posts: 298
    edited December 1969

    Partial disability is not an option? I know one person who moved across the country to get somewhere that was available.

    For community - a lot of people seek out things like MMOs and Virtual Worlds if circumstance makes real-life socializing is too difficult. This probably contributes a lot to why something like World of Warcraft remains stable as a decade old game.

    I don't know enough about Asperger to know the needs / demands / limitations, or if something a support group makes sense or is off the table - but if so, looking for one on craig's list or something might be an option.

  • Eustace ScrubbEustace Scrubb Posts: 1,375
    edited December 1969

    Dude, you'd be surprised to learn just how many of us are Aspies or otherwise autists in one way or another. Believe me, jobs aren't easy to find or keep when you've got ASD in any form, especially I suppose if you're not sufficiently "disabled" to automatically qualify for the specialized considerations put in place for the "handicapped". But there's always reason to keep going, and to keep fighting. Do not give up! You are loved by your family (however awkwardly, and however much they miss and misunderstand about you). You are here for a Purpose beyond your own ease and salary: you are fearfully and wonderfully made as yourself!. You have something to offer. Pick your chin up: you're not alone.

    I'll be praying for you.

  • DamselDamsel Posts: 53
    edited August 2014

    Although I don't have autism or anything in that spectrum, I have been suicidally depressed, and I remember how horrible it was. I don't think anybody who hasn't been there can really understand what it's like.It begins to seem that every day everything that makes you you is being eaten away, as if you're being swallowed by some kind of giant man-eating python. You start thinking that killing yourself is the only way to save what's left. But that's a product of brain chemistry. It's NOT REAL.

    I fought it for six months, until I eventually ended up in the closet with my husband's gun in my mouth. Luckily, my son was home, and because he was only 11 at the time, I knew he'd be the one to find the body. So instead of pulling the trigger, I got help. It meant being hospitalized for a week or so, and recovery was a long, hard battle. But it was worth it.

    Today I'm a New York Times bestselling author who has written 18 books. I have since encountered other dark moments, though never did I come so close to dying. My point in telling this brutal story is that because I held on even when I so desperately wanted to die, I achieved my dreams. It took a long time, but I did it.

    Life is worth living, even when you have to fight through to the bright times. Because the bright times WILL come again.

    Remember that what you are feeling is BRAIN CHEMISTRY. It's not moral weakness, it's not some kind of self-pity or whatever crap stupid people say. And they are stupid people. Clinical depression is no different than diabetes or heart disease. Nobody considers those other things a sign of moral failure. Just realize what's happening when you're feeling this way has a biological cause, and it can be treated.

    I will also share something I experienced as a reporter, soon after my hospitalization. I responded to a shooting call. When I arrived, the cop there told me the man was the victim of a suicide. As I started to leave, the victim's wife came out, realized I was a reporter, and began to beg me pitifully not to write about her husband. We didn't cover suicides, because it can trigger rashes of them, but when I tried to explain, she was too busy begging and crying to listen. I escaped, only to pull my car over and cry. I swore then that I would never, never, NEVER do that to my husband, son, parents, and sister. The look on her face, the utter devastation and despair, was one of the worst things I saw as a reporter, and I saw some pretty nasty stuff. You don't want to do that to your folks, because they'll never get over it.

    In the meantime, here's a practical suggestion that I swear to you will work wonders. Go outside or to the gym or whatever, and RUN. Push yourself. I found when my anxiety was at its worst that running or even just walking fast was a great, quick way to burn off anxiety and improve my mood. It works every time. I know it's hard to make yourself do that when you're depressed, but do it anyway. As you run, your body releases endorphins and other brain chemicals that can burn through the nasty stuff you've got floating around in your brain right now. And it's also good for creativity. I've found that regular exercise is more effective than antidepressants. Though it all helps. Too, exercise is also good when you're blocked creatively, possibly because you get the blood pumping into your brain.

    Try it. I found when I was absolutely in bad shape, making myself get on the treadmill and even just WALK FAST would make me feel better immediately, where antidepressants often take weeks to kick in.

    Post edited by Damsel on
  • RAMWolffRAMWolff Posts: 5,305
    edited December 1969

    Not sure what to add but wanted to lend my voice of support. It's not easy having a disability and yet it's important to find one's place in this world. To work at something you enjoy, to build character, to find ones voice, to find inner strength, to be all you know how to be and then push the limits. You call yourself Outer Limits, well, take that handle and run with it. I have a client that lives with Asperger's too, he's such a smart man but he's got it pretty bad so he got a job at Whole Foods stocking and now they have him at the register. I think that's a great advancement for him and I'm very happy to see him there when I shop there. His attitude is allot better and his energy field reads very calm to me compared to when he first got the job so I know he's happy and enjoying the work. If he didn't have this job he would be holed up in his house playing video games and sleeping. So it is important to find something that will help you in more ways than just monetary. It should help you with all the above. Good luck with your endeavors!

  • icprncssicprncss Posts: 3,444
    edited December 1969

    Are there any support groups in your area? If there are, join them. They can be a great help. How supportive is your family? If they are, great. If they aren't, maybe you need to sit down with them and explain to them exactly what you feel. If they aren't helping you, tell them. They can't read your mind. They don't always understand.

    If you are depressed, get help. If meds are prescribe, take them. This is a medical condition. Treat it as such.

    I know,, I know. It's not that easy In fact it;s downright difficult. Talk to those you love and need. Silence is not always golden. I'm just g;ad for you that you aren't living on borrowed time.

  • NovicaNovica Posts: 9,396
    edited December 1969

    Damsel hit on a few points I was going to make- about exercise changing your chemicals being the main one. Another great tool is music- it also changes the chemicals in your brain. The third thing? Animals. Petting animals changes your brain functions (mostly known for lowering blood pressure, but other processes are also at work.)

    My degrees are in counseling and there's one particular group of people who really appreciate socializing and are not demanding- they truly appreciate the time anyone gives them- and that is the seniors. I've done volunteering with them for years- and the way their faces light up when they see you- I think you'd really enjoy how they look forward to seeing you- genuinely! I've done animal visits with several of the places too (and they didn't even know I was there, lol- loved my dog so much!) So perhaps consider calling a seniors retirement home and emphasize you would like to do one on one (not group activities) visits and see if there is anyone who you could visit.

    Hang in there- we care about you.
    Cathie

  • DAZ_ann0314DAZ_ann0314 Posts: 1,526
    edited December 1969

    Actually there really isn't medication for Aspberger's though there is for depression but in general Aspbergers is a different kinda of thing.

    As for support...here are some links to various groups that you could try or read up on to see if they would maybe be helpful to you:

    http://www.dailystrength.org/c/Asperger-Syndrome/support-group (Someone all ready mentioned this one earlier)

    http://asperger-syndrome.meetup.com/ There is this one which holds meetings across the world it seems...

    http://aspennj.org/ There is this site as well that holds workshops...not sure where you are to know if you could go to one but one of them is on helping with finding employment etc :)

    http://grasp.org/ And there is this one that has links to online support groups, workshops, information etc as well

    I do know from my son that getting through the interview process is a tough thing (one of the reasons they wanted him to wait to try to get his first job so he could prepare and not have a bad experience that could make him even more anxious etc) For him they recommended role play. Basically acting through the interview process with someone you trust. Kinda coming up with answers to questions usually asked, practicing being comfortable etc as it is a big help and takes some of the anxiety part out of the situation. You could try this link to help you kinda get started in that aspect (this site is for those who suffer from anxiety in general but as Aspergers and PDD-NOS cause an anxiety in social circumstances, the info should help though it will take some practice to apply it. http://socialanxietydisorder.about.com/od/copingwithsad/a/jobinterviewtips.htm and then this is a link to someone who has Aspergers who shared what worked for them. http://www.wrongplanet.net/postt139625.html

    Now regardless of my link frenzy...some thing to keep in mind:

    You are a wonderful person and your life is meaningful...probably to more people than you realize. We are often hardest on ourselves especially if we feel we are "different" but honestly everyone is "different". And different is beautiful :)

    Your family may have misconceptions or their own opinions but those things in no way define who or what you are and often are based on a lack of education on the topic (mental health sadly is one of the things society at large seems least educated about unless you've personally gone through it so it can be an uphill battle sometimes with family). Keep trying and hang in there, maybe send or print out some information for them or even some of the testimonials from others suffering from the disorder and see if that helps. There is never any guarantee whether family will or won't come around (depends on the family) but either way be sure you love yourself and try not to worry about the opinions others may place on you (I know easier said than done)

    Keep reaching out as you are able to do and keep talking. Try finding those going through the same thing that can be your support as they will understand what you are going through and be far more supportive than those who haven't. You are not alone and there are plenty of others who do truly understand and can empathize out there who would gladly listen and help)

    ((HUGS))

  • FistyFisty Posts: 1,699
    edited December 1969

    In upstate new york if you're in the area and want to drop by.. gay friendly nerdy types here... and not without similar experiences.

  • McGyverMcGyver Posts: 953
    edited August 2014

    Hi Outré Limits!
    Before I go any further I should probably introduce myself... I'm lordvicore... Well, actually I'm McGyver... not the the TV character played by Dean Richard Anderson... or was that Richard Andrew Deanson... Richard Dean Andersonowskidriguez ?... Whatever...
    I'm bad with names...
    Actually those are just my screen names, my real name is Victor, though people who know me usually either call me "Vic" or "Come out with your hands up or we'll use the tear gas again"....
    Though, usually that last one is less what they call me and more what they call out to me when I...
    Hmm...
    I feel I've gotten off to a bad start...
    I should probably start over...

    Hi Outré Limits!
    Before I go any further I should probably introduce myself... naa, that didn't go well the first time...
    Well, by now you are probably wishing you didn't start reading this, but you are conflicted as to whether or not to continue...
    Let me reassure you that you are probably better off not reading anything I have to say.
    Which typically just by saying, makes most people want to continue reading, challenged by the suggestion there is something I may write, that I don't want them to read...
    I assure if there was something that I wanted to write that I didn't want you or anyone else to read, I would write it way off to the side past the margin where nobody would see it.
    That, and I'm real lazy and if there was something I didn't want anyone to read, I probably wouldn't go through the trouble of writing it in the first place.
    Unless I secretly wanted you to read it, but I was actually just hyping the whole thing...

    Penguin dust.

    There... I got it out of the way.
    Feels better now that that is off my chest.
    I feel we can proceed now on solid footing... by sharing that... though I'm not quite sure what exactly that is, I have established a thread of trust... or something like that...
    Does it feel like trust?
    Sometimes I feel I trust someone but later it just turns out to be gas...

    Eh...
    Lets start all over...

    Hi Outré Limits!
    Forget everything you just read up there (I don't know why anyone would remember it)...
    Okay...
    I read your post... and I have no advice whatsoever... I don't like to give advice because in real life no matter how much friggin' sense it makes 99% of the time nobody ever takes it.
    Not that I think you wouldn't take it, its just that advice is never as easy as it seems because there are an infinite number of variables and subtle nuances that are often left uncommunicated, and the experiences and reasonings of one persons life is almost impossible to equate to another's... what seems common sense to one person is often illogical to someone else...
    and sometimes we even misinterpret what the other person means... like when I thought my cousin was calling to tell me about her crappy boyfriend again and I fell asleep while she was talking, but she was actually calling to tell me there was a bear in her garage, but when I woke up I just said "throw his dumb ass out... hit him with that big wooden folding chair and tell to get the hell out" which apparently worked... though I'd never tell anyone to hit a bear with a wooden folding chair unless the bear owed them money and was drunk...
    and hitting people with wooden folding chairs is probably illegal in a lot of places, though hitting her boyfriend with anything short of hot lava probably is more less poetic justice...
    See, you'ed probably just get terrible advice from me anyway, which may or may not get you eaten by a bear.
    Oh and the other reason I don't give advice is I'm pretty nuts.
    I'm talking "squirrels-in-the-pants nuttier than a box of walnuts"...
    That was a terrible metaphor...
    It probably wasn't even a metaphor... analogy?... simile?...
    Whatever... the "squirrels-in-the-pants" part is good... good imagery, but the "box of walnuts" just fell short.
    Sorry.
    But, yeah... I'm nuts, so you probably shouldn't take any advice from me... especially any involving folding chairs...

    So yeah, no advice... but hopefully you got a snicker or two out of something I said...
    If there was anything I could say... an observation... not advice (that gets people mauled sometimes)... I would have to say, never ever give up... you have people at home who love you, there are people here who understand and support you and really... nothing is ever hopeless... even hopeless times are never actually hopeless if you have a little hope... as stupid as that sounds, we all make our own hope... we can choose to let all the really bad things drag us down... or you can find something so ironic and stupidly absurd and just laugh at the situation... do your best... but never let it take away your hope... as long as you can find something in this world that can make you laugh, snicker or snort... you can have some glimmer of hope.

    Don't overdo it though... or you'll have a net thrown over you like I have had... well, it was a fishing net and about 200 pounds of block and tackle, but I'm sure I deserved it.
    I did.
    But I digress...
    For whatever it's worth... you have people who care about you. And that is pretty priceless
    Just like the credit card commercial:

    Old fashioned wooden folding chair from a thrift store: $10

    Call to your cousin: $1.25

    Advice from a madman who means well and not getting mauled by a bear in the process: Priceless

    But thats not advice... maybe something like "shared experience based perspective"... I like that... it sounds less smug.

    Be well Outré Limits, you are not alone.

    One last thing before I go...

    Expresso Hamster

    ExpressoHamster.jpg
    812 x 962 - 199K
    Post edited by McGyver on
  • FistyFisty Posts: 1,699
    edited December 1969

    That was deliciously random, I love it.

  • karibousboutiquekaribousboutique Posts: 848
    edited December 1969

    I've been reading the wonderful things people have been posting here, sharing their stories and humor and encouragement, offering whatever we can offer from our virtual locations. And all of your fears and sadness; and all of our words of support and sympathy... they center on two things: minds and hearts. We now know that our hearts ARE our brains. Our emotions start there and our actions emerge from there. You've already shared that your brain is a little different than the typical person's, and you've heard others talk about the brain's dependence on internal chemistry to function properly. Let me share a little bit of insight on that front...

    My undergraduate degree was in molecular biology and chemistry, and my first career was in the pharmaceutical industry. As the talented Damsel shared, our brains run on chemistry. And as someone who has tread a very similar path to the one she described -- I was in that same closet (metaphorically)... more than once... more than twice... and somehow, miraculously, I ended up in a hospital (more than once... more than twice...) instead of a grave. In the course of scaling the walls of my brain to find my way back to sanity, I learned a few things about the gray matter between our ears.

    The chemicals in our brains exist to form connections. Our whole body runs on electricity. In the brain, those electrical signals cross the gaps between cells using chemistry. The exact nature of those electro-chemical interactions are still, in large part, a mystery to medicine -- we're making pharmaceutical progress, slowly. But I digress. One AMAZING thing we have discovered in the last decade through advanced imaging is that the physical nerve connections in our brain change with our thoughts and behaviors. Our brains physically change when we think, feel, and act.

    So here's the great news -- you can change your brain. Not in an abstract, "change your thinking!" kind of way, but in an actual, physical sense. If your brain is a field of wild grass, your thoughts and behaviors will form paths through that field. The more often you walk a path, the easier it gets to tread. Physically, our brain strengthens connections we use regularly and eliminates those we don't. We call it learning, lol. As we get older, re-routing those paths is much harder... but not impossible.

    Sometimes it's easier to believe in science than emotions or common sense. And science shows that YOU -- with your amazing, unique, gifted brain -- have the power to make new connections in your head. Challenge your negative thoughts. And if you can't do it yourself, because hopelessness makes that impossible sometimes (as I well know), find someone who will. Look how many of us you found in one little corner of the artistic universe! Try to stay in THIS moment. Re-hashing yesterday and worrying about the future is reinforcing pathways that are keeping you stuck. Staying in the moment takes practice, but again, practice physically changes your brain, and it gets easier. Make very small goals, not huge ones. If you get in the habit of regularly making very small accomplishments, your brain forges the pathway that lets you tackle bigger ones -- in time, with great patience. And the hardest bit of advice, which is a lot like walking up a down escalator, is to try to accept what is. You don't have to like it, or condone it. You just need to acknowledge it. Acknowledge YOU, as you are, without strings. When you accept it, you are equipped to deal with it, or change it, or live with it. And there are days you get there... and days you don't.

    You can learn more about feeling comfortable in social situations, even if it never comes naturally. I learned to bowl. My first bowling score (before there were "bumpers" in gutters) was a fantastic... 4. Yes. 4. I SUCKED at it. But then I hung out with a semi-pro bowler. And, through observation, a little instruction, and through LOTS of practice, I became decent. 125 average or so. I'll never bowl a 300. I'll never be GREAT. But I'm okay, and that's enough. Remember, PHYSICAL changes.

    You have it in your power to change your brain's chemistry and structure. And you have undoubtedly already done more of this than the average person, because you've needed to work your brain harder at things many of us take for granted. Give yourself a pat on the back for that! You're artistic, you understand your challenges, and you're still here.

    Oh, and, lol... If nobody has said this yet.. Art helps!!! (Funny we haven't all been repeating that, seeing as where this thread is living!) Art is a great way of exercising those "good" pathways and triggering "good" chemicals. You've obviously got interests and abilities in art. Use them. Even if it isn't for financial benefit, art is an amazing brain tool, confidence builder, emotional release, and way to feel accomplishment!!

  • jorge dorlandojorge dorlando Posts: 884
    edited December 1969

    Hi all,

    I am at a point where I need some guidance. I have Asperger syndrome, but am functional enough to not quality for help, but too dysfunctional to pass job interviews. I had a job I could do, but it got outsourced (and frankly was killing me). I used to do remote tech support for 3 major retail office supply chains. Where I live, I have a stable house, but there are no jobs here. My main (and, stupidly on my part, only) backup plan failed (working with a friend on a Poser store). There are no creative people here, there are no gay or genderqueer people here. There are no real nerds here, only people who play video games. I have made many efforts to reach out as best I can, to no avail. The only social outlets are all online, and those do nothing for me (something I found out while working a job from home). My parents moved here when I was in college, so I do not know anyone that isn't family. I turned 34 less than a month ago, but still basically feel like a teenager/somewhere in my 20s (mentally I'm not, though). My family loves me, but they do not understand or know how to deal with what I have going on. My mother thinks it's simple for me to "just get a job", but even without all that I have going on, it's not an option here. I am at a loss for what to do, and would appreciate the advice of any adult working through severe social retardation (and that's what it is.. I am far, far behind where I should be on social skills, and I don't know that my brain is wired in a way that I can pick them up). What do I do? Everyone says to talk about it when you're depressed and considering your final options, but nobody actually ever wants to hear it, or has any good advice. Please help. I know I do not participate on here as much as I could (but I don't participate anywhere really, as I am stuck in my head most of the time, even when I don't want to be). I don't know what to do and nobody here knows what to do.

    Thank you.


    Where are you, anyway? (Well, no need to tell your location, if you do not want to do it)
    Your situation is no different from most people here ... Aah and the depression is the disease of the century ... Ok, I know what your problem is another!
    But friend, you feel rejection itself from being a bearer of this problem?
    It you angry and frustrated with yourself? Feel pain in your bones, embittered by this problem? Hates his personality?
    If yes, then no one can help you
    I can be my worst enemy, if I did not accept me as I am,
    people can try to help me, but if I own tailing me ... People will see and treat you, as you see yourself.
    My advice is that you never want to be like someone else, never want to be born different than it is today. Love you as you are .Each human being has an individuality, and this differs from the other ones.
    Most times we have to go in front of the mirror, and we confront ourselves (I often had to go to the mirror to face me, and I even said to me: I'm a mouse, or a man?) then I found the answer within myself: "I am a man, albeit with flaws, but I am a man, and I love me !!!

    Each of us has something in our life that we have to deal with it !!!
    Each of us has something in our life that we have to overcome !!

    Here in Brazil, still third world country, there are two eyes of blind people, who are employed, working (obviously they use special keyboards)
    My wedged not walk on their legs like us, she is paralyzed, and yet works at the bank ...
    Here in Brazil The story of Judge Ricardo Tadeu da Fonseca is an example of overcoming. He was the first blind judge working in a Brazilian court. To graduate from law school, Richard enlisted the help of colleagues. And throughout his career, had to deal with several episodes of prejudice. Came to be disqualified from a tender and not going to interviews, but gave a comeback and managed to realize the dream of becoming a judge.
    http://g1.globo.com/globo-news/noticia/2014/01/conheca-historia-do-1-juiz-cego-trabalhar-em-um-tribunal-brasileiro.html

    Not your problem that limits you, but it is how you are judged himself

  • EstroyerEstroyer Posts: 1,811
    edited December 1969

    Wanted to post here and now I have taken the time.
    I see that lots of other people already had some very heartwarming advise and I can't top that :)
    What I can do is acknowledge your hardships as my daughter has classic autism and my hubby also Asperger's.
    I see them struggle in social environments such as school and at jobs and it makes me cry sometimes.
    In the Netherlands I know of ways to help, but I have no idea what's going on in the US, so I can't give you any advise on that.
    In the past years I have worked for a foundation that organised (anime & manga) conventions for ho-le-bi people.
    I know that somehow that scene draws in a large percentage of people that are transgendered, creative and have autism.
    No one knows why, but it makes for a colorful and lovely place for people to be and act themselves.
    Not sure if you are a manga/anime enthousiast, but I would recommend visiting a convention, because people tend to be very open and welcoming and art is always the binding factor, may it be in acting, drawing or clothing.
    That's all the advise I have to offer for now, but I hope sincerely that you will find happiness and be able to shake that dark blanket off your shoulders <3

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