I hate it when I come across a blog and I read all the posts and then I discover that posting has just sort of stopped without any sort of explanation.
This blog has become that. An abrupt stop with no explanation. So, I’m going to attempt to offer an explanation and maybe it will make sense and maybe it won’t – but at least there will be some sort of explanation. Maybe.
At the beginning of July, I was involved in… something (? I still don’t quite know what to call it but I suppose an online disagreement? I don’t really know what it was that I supposedly did but I must have done Something to cause the Something).
During the fallout over the Something, I closed this site down and moved all the posts. About six weeks later, I resurrected this site and put the posts back and that’s why many of the older posts do not have images in case you were wondering. They were lost in the take down and put back up and as much as it annoys me that there are posts without images, I also haven’t managed to make time to go through all the posts to re attach the images because of my next point.
The other more painful part of the fallout is that a number of people who I considered to be good friends abandoned me.
This has led to me experiencing massive internal conflict because – I need to number my thoughts to help me keep focused here:
- I have abandonment issues. I’m not going to pretend I don’t have issues related to abandonment because that would just be me being dishonest with myself. I don’t think anyone who experiences abrupt parental abandonment gets away from that completely unscathed. The problem is that those thoughts related to being abandoned don’t usually get to take up space in my brain because I can logically explain them. But real abandonment happened recently and logic kinda takes a seat while the emotions remind me that I am not good enough.
- I wish I could say that my former friends are awful people, but they’re not so maybe that means that I am the awful person? This is my thought process. This lives with me every day and I don’t want to share my thoughts with others if I am the awful person.
- Maybe they were never my friends in the first place. Maybe I once again misinterpreted the meaning of social relationships and maybe they only offered their friendship based on what I could do for them. When I was at my lowest point of a really tough year, maybe they saw that I had nothing left to offer them. This is also my thought process and in a way it holds truth because I don’t have that much to offer people at the moment.
This makes me a difficult person to be friends with now because I need constant reassurance that the people who stuck around plan to continue to stick around. I don’t want to be clingy and needy like that. I also struggle with the give and take of friendships and while I’m currently in a phase where I can’t give that much, I don’t want to be constantly taking either. So, I have withdrawn from people a bit, and I’ve reduced my online time. This site is part of that online time.
The last numbered point also leads me to another point (Are these even points or random thought bubbles tied together with tenuous strings?): This year has been hard for me. I’ve struggled to get things done that ordinarily wouldn’t be too hard for me to do. Writing is one of those things. Previously, words would flow from my brain to the page/screen almost effortlessly and while I still get short bursts of that, most of the time, every word and every sentence requires very deliberate thought and often I find my writing to be terribly confusing to read.
On top of that, I’m dealing with a what-more-can-I-say feeling. This blog contains 189 published posts (excluding this one which will hopefully get published taking the total to 190). Aside from the A-Z of neurodiversity series where a number of autistic people contributed posts, and a guest post in June, I wrote those posts. That’s a lot of words. Not as many as most of the autistic bloggers that I know, but that’s still a lot of words, and a lot of them are very repetitive.
How many times do people have to say stop treating autistic children as less than human? How many times do people have to say that murdering people is wrong? How many times do people have to say stop talking about as though we can’t hear/read what you’re saying? How many times do people need to say that awareness hurts? Even more basic, how many times do people have to explain that how we refer to our own identity is our choice and no one else’s?
Is there a certain number of times each person from a group needs to say the same thing before people start listening? Is there a certain number of people from the group that need to say the same thing? What more can I laboriously write to convince you that Autistic people (including all autistic children) are human and we’re hurting and we don’t deserve to be hurting?
On this site, I have shared a lot of my pain. In this post, I have shared a lot of my pain. But I haven’t done that to get sympathy. I have done it so that people can hopefully treat other autistic people better than I have been treated, but why do I need to constantly remind people that I am hurting? Why don’t people seem to realise that I’m as capable of being hurt as anyone else. If anything, I carry my hurt for longer because I find it so difficult to process and understand the hurt.
So there’s my sort of explanation as to why this site (and the Facebook page – and even my personal FB profile) has gone quiet.
This space used to be a space where I could freely express my thoughts, but now it’s a space where I struggle to feel as though my thoughts matter to anyone – and that’s when I can actually sort my thoughts out well enough to make sense of them.
It’s not all doom and gloom though. I’ve started expressing myself through different means. I play with Photoshop, pens and paint a lot. That has started to become what I do more than how this site used to be what I do. I don’t know if that makes sense?
I would love to be able to say “hey! I make things like this now!”
But I worry that my developing interest in creating things will be viewed through the ableist lens of “they’re pretty good for an autistic person” and so I haven’t shared a lot of what I’m doing other than with a few close friends (two close friends. Two!)
Anyway, it would be hard to start sharing stuff like the above on a site that has always been tagged as one Autistic person blogging about things in their head. I think. Maybe?
So that’s my explanation. All of it. Some of it might even make sense. I don’t really know what that means for the future of this site – or the Facebook page. I don’t know if I will stop writing completely or whether I just need to take a long break. I do have quite a few posts in draft mode that are experiencing failure to be completed, but I really do need to take a break. I haven’t earned the break. I maybe don’t even deserve to take a break when there are others who have been writing more and for longer than I have, but I need the break.
I need to submerge myself in pixels and paint and muddle my way through the pain of this year. I also need to finish my degree so that I can say that there is one thing in my life that started and finished. Maybe I will start sharing some random digital art, but I don’t know.
An edit to add: I’m truly grateful to the friends that stuck around and please don’t take my withdrawal as me not being appreciative. I am. I just don’t want to be that pathetic friend who always has an issue.