My Life with Autism

My Life with Autism

Hi everyone it’s Isabella! Today I want to talk about autism and what my life has been like because of it. I am what they call a high functioning autistic and I also have ADHD. My mom says they are very common to have together. I take medication that helps me focus and slow down my thoughts for my ADHD. My autism is something that I have needed to learn to live with and overcome obstacles.

Communication

I know from my mom that I did not speak until I was 3 years old. I do remember drawing pictures for her when she asked me questions. I know my mom tried to teach me sign language when I did not talk like other babies. I guess I didn’t have anything to say back then! I am making up for it now though right? That is what my mom says anyway. My mom worked with me through art to connect pictures to words. I don’t know how to explain it to you why it worked because I do not know what it’s like to not have autism.

Friends

School was very hard on me the first few years. Kids were mean because I had a helper. I was called a retard starting in kindergarten. That’s messed up because a 5 year old did not make up that word or know people use it that way. I was called a lot of things and didn’t understand why people were so mean. I wanted friends too, but who wants to be friends with the kid that everyone hates? I can’t be mad at other kids for that though, because now I know that they would have been picked on too. I wouldn’t want that for anybody.

Learning

I have a harder time learning new things from my autism. It was in the last year I finally figured out how to tie my shoes. Algebra was easier for me. Some things I understand and some things I don’t. I need logic. If I can’t relate concepts to my own life somehow I can’t figure it out. It takes me longer to get my work done, but I keep trying until I figure it out. I know it frustrates people that I can’t always get it right the first time they explain how to do something. Teaching me takes a lot of patience, but once I get it I am good. I am in all regular or advanced courses. I am not going to let having autism stop me from being every other kid my age.

The really weird thing about autism is that I have a genius IQ. Most kids with a disability have an above average IQ, but difficulty expressing it. I began expressing myself through art and creative writing from a very young age. Yeah I know almost 16 is still very young, but I mean I was 7 when I began writing. I take college classes in art and I am very artistic. For me to be able to draw a picture, paint, or sketch is to tell an entire story in a single picture. I really like to draw anime in my spare time. Art keeps me calm and focused. I focus on brush technique, blending, emotion, and I give my art my own feelings.

Dating

Every teenager wants to have a boyfriend or girlfriend. That’s not exactly easy when you aren’t the perfect pretty popular girl. I have had people try to use me. People have hurt my feelings a lot. I cried a lot about it. My ex-boyfriend Jake said no boy would ever really want to be with me except for money. Like what the hell? You think my parents money is mine and I get called retarded? That makes sense, not. My mom said don’t chase people. People who want you will come to you and the ones worth having aren’t chasing people they are chasing dreams and God. That was right before I met my boyfriend Ni. Great advice mom, but it was a little late. Anyway she was right. Those worth having in your life bring something to it and do not take anything but love.

It’s hard when people look down on me because I have autism. Some people treat me differently once or twice, but they don’t get the chance to do it again. It’s going to keep being a struggle learning some new subjects for me. I’m really not looking forward to trigonometry next year. Math is so hard for me. I am going to get it eventually. I need to keep trying and not give up like with everything in life.

I want people to see me like everyone else and they do not see me that way. Maybe that is a good thing because honestly a lot of people do suck. That’s what Ni says to me all of the time and he’s right. People can be selfish jerks who don’t care about anyone else. I don’t know why being different bothers me sometimes. My mom says that everyone in the world wants to find the place where they fit in, but you need to choose what type of people you want to fit in with as a crowd. I know it’s not a world of jerks.

I think the hardest thing about having autism for me personally is when I look at my mom. I know how hard she worked for both of us. I know she spent too many hours to count to raise me right and to help me to be my best. She’s so proud of me. I know I am doing well. I wish I knew what it was like to not be autistic so I could understand how it feels for my mom to watch everything that we have been through.

1 reply
  1. Andy Burch
    Andy Burch says:

    I can perfectly relate. Like you I didn’t even mumbling until I was almost 2. My younger years, I was told I was violent and highly unfriendly and misbehaved. I went to regular public school for the first few years of my life and was constantly hated and picked on by everyone. Even the teachers hated having me in their class. I basically lived in the principle’s office. Eventually the school gave me a IQ test and was shocked by the result. They attempted to talk to my parents about it all and my parents didn’t want to hear any of it. I was pulled out of the school and placed in a very small private school instead.

    Even in the private school is I hated by classmates and was avoided by everyone. It wasn’t until I was in middle school that people eventually started being willing to talk to me and be seen at least speaking with me. It basically stayed that way until I graduated. 12 years later I haven’t heard from one person since graduation day.

    Dating has been extremely difficult for me. I am not your typical guy I guess. I have different likes…different taste I guess. I’ve only had one real girl friend. We lived together for almost 7 years and they were the worst years of my life that left me very hurt and lost in life. She was a drug addict whom let drugs and her personal life issues consume her. I tried to help her as much as I could but all I did was end up hurting and empowering her to hurt herself and myself more. She really only loved me for about 6 months of those 7 years, the rest of the time I lived in a house where I basically existed in a closet unwelcome to be around her because of another man she fell in love with and moved into my house. I was the only one in the house hold who worked and made money to support us and the majority of my money went toward drugs for them, I rarely could even pay the bills.

    Anyway, enough of all of that. Like you I have a very hard time relating to others and the things I am asked to do and told unless I can see logic behind it from my perspective and in my own way. Today I live with my 82 year old grandmother who,for as long as I have known her, has been (undiagnosised) mentally retarded, and as she has aged she has also developed dementia. I have a hard time talking with and trying to relate to her and the things she says and questions she asks. I try my best but it is difficult.

    I long for companionship in life…people to hangout with…fell normal…enjoy…and have fun. I don’t know how though, and I’m afraid to really reach out to new people. Scared because I don’t understand how, understand “normal” people, and scared of being hurt again.

    In addition to being highly autistic I use a wheelchair and wear full length leg braces. Mostly I am proud for who I am…what I am…the person that I am. I love myself and my weirdities…but…it’s lonely…and I do wish I could be enjoyed by others and understood and have fun with friends.

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