Thursday, 24 April 2014


"What have you got to be anxious about?"
"Look at everything you have going for you!"
"Get over it!"

Anxiety can be a good thing in small doses.  That gut feeling you get when something isn't quite right, worrying about an exam, angsting over a problem - these will make you anxious, but the important thing is that anxiety should go away after the problem is resolved.

For some of us, it never goes away.

What are we anxious about?  Things that everyone else takes for granted - going to the shop, going to work, ringing someone on the phone, opening the door when someone knocks on it.

If you don't suffer from anxiety, you're probably wondering WTF? But if you can tell me how I can stop my heart rate from doubling every time I have to go to the shop, if you can stop my brain from releasing the chemicals that gives me the feeling of dread every time the boss calls me into his office (I can't even remember the last time I got in trouble) then please, tell me so these horrible feelings can stop.

No one has full control over their mind.  Everyone has a sub-conscious that seems to have a will of its own. And for some of us that means everlasting anxiety, depression and for some a complete lack of control of their own bodies. 

You can learn to manage it.  You can learn to breathe deeply and calmly to control your bodies reactions.  You can avoid situations that you know will make the situation worse.  You can learn to avoid substances like alcohol or caffiene which have a negative effect on your health.

But it's always there.  And it builds.  And builds.  At least a few times a week I overload.  It's nothing drastic, and I usually calm myself.  Sometimes overloads can even be enjoyable, like at the footy where I'm allowed to be fully Autistic and scream and cheer and jump and clap to my hearts content.  Everyone once in a while I'll have a panic attack, usually resulting in a day off work and me being rather upset. 

And then, maybe once or twice a year, I'll have a full-blown Autistic meltdown.  It happens when I'm at panic attack stage, and something minute that I've built up in my head goes wrong and suddenly I'm in trouble.

It hurts.  It feels like an andrenaline rush right under your skin, so painful that any contact will burn.  Touch me when I'm in this state and you WILL get bitten (and I have fangs, so watch out!).  It gets into your chest.  You can't breathe.  It's in your MIND.  You have to get it out.  You smash yourself against anything, you try and crack your own head open to try and relieve the pressure.  You're confused, scared and hurting.  And then after a minute or two of thrashing, smacking yourself, attacking anyone who comes near, you're out of energy.  And you can barely move.  This is the worst part as you can still feel the pressure, but now you don't have the energy to try and get some relief.  You're scared.  Eventually, it all wears off, you pick yourself up and you move on.

This isn't all in my head.  This is a very real physical problem I have.  That many people have.  It's not rational.  We feel these emotions whether they're warranted or not.  We can't change it anymore than we can change our DNA.  Please, I know a lot of people are well-intentioned, but as irrational as it is our anxiety is real.  Please don't invalidate it because the situation doesn't call for it.  Be there, hug us, talk to us, be calm for us. 

To everyone out there like me who suffers from Aspergers and anxiety (and even depression), this is for you.  It's hard, but we can all get through it.

Kind of explains why I love Sonic the Hedgehog so much really...

"If you have time to worry, then run!"

1 comment:

  1. XANAX!
    Out in the real country (Oakey is a suburb of Toowoomba :P) you can get Xanax in 44s :)