Thursday, March 27, 2008

Why not PTSD and Fries, or ACoA and Fries?

Hello all. I was diagnosed as AS in the fall of 1996. I was 37. I was just about walking dead at the time. I had serious depression and anxiety issues since I was young, all a result of some serious abuse, which I will write about more in due course. In due course - nice 50 cent phrase -- Buckley used to use that on Firing Line. I'm not as smart as him, but I've got smarter political views. :-)

I didn't have any coverage, so I was seen by a psychiatry resident at a local mental hospital. So, I was a guinea pig for training the doctors. I hoped for the best on this. I did pretty well. He wasn't some kid. The good doctor has had years of experience as a counselor, and had decided to further himself.

I was a high school drop-out, but quite well read, having acquired a decent knowledge base. I saw the symptoms of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder in myself. Some ten years earlier, I had read a book called "The Wound of War," written by Herbert Hendin, and Ann Pollinger Hass and realized that much of what I was read described me But I had never been in a war, or even served in the military. So, how could that be? It suddenly occurred to me that my childhood had been a battlefield. I had been presented with my own cornucopia of horrors as a kid, and thought, to myself "shit, no wonder I feel the way I do." I always knew my childhood was shit, but, up to then, I had never really thought about it in detail. But some understanding of the crazy stuff going on in my head was the first step, but I still couldn't bring myself to get professional help.

When I did, in 1995, after a few sessions, the shrink diagnosed me as social phobic. I politely told him he was wrong, wrong and wrong. Shortly after, in sessions, he started asking me a lot of questions that I considered offbeat. Asked me if I had any hobbies when I was young. I told him about my childhood fascination with insects. He asked me about if I found it easy to make friends as a child. I later found what he was up to. He was starting to suspect I was Asperger. He probably would not have stumbled on to this had he not been in training to be a child psychiatrist. In his residency, he had to deal with adult patients, also, which is how I ended up dealing with a child psychiatrist. He told me about Asperger's, which I had heard of from a 60 minutes piece, and that's about all I knew about it. He also decided that I indeed has Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, and in addition to that, major depression, and generalized anxiety disorder NOS. An interesting witches brew there.

So, I could call this blog, Depression and Fries, or Anxiety and Fries. But depression and anxiety are something that I have. They don't define me. I could call this Adult Child of Alcoholics and fries - but ACOA is simply a description of my upbringing. But Asperger Syndrome is something I am. I don't mean I expect the world to take notice and adjust themselves to my quirks. Being a good Vulcan, I've tried to adapt to this planet, and I've learned to fit in pretty well with the Earth folks. I've really come to like most of them. They are not Klingons like my father, my sister, and some of the teachers I had in Catholic School. But not matter how much improvement I make in the little social nuances, I'll always be Asperger, and my world view will be Aspergian. I will write about many things on this blog. Most of my posts will be something other than Asperger related, most likely. But, the depression and other stuff, they are just the fries, an Aspergian I am.

1 comment:

felix said...

You and I seem to entertain some of the same expressions. I enjoyed reading your story. It appears to have somewhat the style of Joyce.