How do I get people past the disabilities to make friends?

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ulrichburke
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30 Oct 2022, 11:27 pm

I've got Cerebral Palsy, Hydrocephalus, Caetextia and Asperger's as well. They come out in my face/ physique, let's face it, I could be one of Santa's Little Helpers no questions asked! THAT'S what's always killed me in Life. In others' eyes I'm Harpic (clean round the bend), Shrek, Monster man, Hellboy, I'll let you finish the list off. (I've even been held up to kids as the Bogey Man who'll Get them in their Sleep if they're not Good. That was in Hastings. The kids used to run when they saw me. The fathers came round because they thought I'd got Twinkie photos on my computer and when they didn't find any I was obviously just good at hiding them so they worked me over anyway and told me to keep away from their kids.) I've been beaten up more times than I can count, burgled so often the cops have had to move me between 3 cities (well, 2 cities and 1 very large town) for my own safety. I've got permanent head scars, had all my teeth kicked out, had my legs permanently scarred with boiling water, intentionally thrown by a woman who didn't approve of a disabled guy working in a day centre. I've never had friends, nor been out with groups, nor known how to interact with groups, it's like they're speaking a foreign language. And I've been banned from many places for trying (including the local Pier - got banned from there because my face, apparently, scared the other customers. That was years ago. Now I'm just banned because I'm on the banned list, nobody remembers why.

I've trained myself out of most of it - timekeeping? I've got an alarm clock I keep set so I've got an hour to get ready and go out to get buses/trains. I also keep a note of WHY I'm going out by it, written when it's fresh in my mind. Messy eater - I use chopsticks for everything, FAR easier, you're only having to concentrate on one hand. And so on. Thing IS....

I've never given up. I'll say that much for me. I've applied, religiously, for any an d every job I thought I could do, paid or voluntary, my entire life. I still do. And I've been turned down for every single one of them. Sorry, you got no references/not enough previous experience/Look at you. You REALLY think you could do this? You're just an effin/ failure/waste of space/parasite....' The last was a sudden ejaculation from someone who wanted a guy who understood databases. I'd thought I was doing well in the interview till then! (Yes I DO understand basic databases, btw. Got a qual. in DBASE!) But it's sentiments echoed by many others. Yeah, I get a little suicidal over all of this at times. It's a huge weight pressing down on me. Dad always told me I'd be a failure. I always thought if I took my chances and worked hard enough I'd prove him wrong. But thus far he's been right. You can't take chances you're not being given. They never give you a shot. And when you hit my age if you've not HAD any chances people don't see WHY they should start giving you them.

THAT'S the bit that hurts. Not failing, but never having been allowed to try. I mean OK I'm an ugly sod. Granted. But I'm an ugly sod with 16 good quals. including an HND equivalent. Surely that should count for SOMETHING? And even socially nobody lets you join in. Want to go to a gym? Sorry - got to have someone with you at all times, mate Our staff don't count. You don't know nobody? Sorry - out!! Want to join a Meetup group? You get to the venue, no idea who anyone else is (I can't recognise people from pictures, my brain doesn't' 'do' pictures at all well) so you text the group leader... 'I'm not here to answer your texts. You obviously don't want to be with us, we're taking your name off the group.' So I tried another, and another, and another and finally it dawned that I just wasn't human enough to be wanted by other people socially. So I stopped, because I was getting banned from all the places anyway (I don't have to DO anything to get banned, I just have to BE!) I've never had friends nor any kind of a social life, or ever really interacted with people at all. How many other guys can honestly say they've gone through an entire life never knowing how to have a conversation with anyone?

I want a chance to try, or what's the point of being here? I want to know how to interact/have friends, or what's the point in claiming to be human (OK, I know I'm technically not human but you know what I mean.) I want to know how NOT to feel scared all the time - there's a guy in my flats who kicks my door in because he says I walk too loudly, there's others who want me out on the streets, who say I shouldn't be allowed near normal people/kids. (I've never done anything to a kid, but when I was one I DID go through a phase of being 'got at' by adult males. Was 12-15 then. Oddly enough it felt comforting in a way because they were the closest thing I had to friends.) Forget school. You don't go to school when you're me, EVERYONE'S the bully cos you're the only spazmo. But there's one thing I've learned from all of this.

In humans, dividing developmental stages up by age is meaningless. They treat you exactly the same way whatever age you, and they, are. At school, you get kicked out of the friends groups. After school there's work which are larger 'friends' groups if you think about it - you get kicked out of those, too, same reasoning, you don't fit. And of course you're still getting kicked out of adult groups (and kicked over by the adults, just as you were by the school bullies.) Everyone's got a reason NOT to let you do things, just as those in school had reasons NOT to let you join in with them. People are people, age is meaningless. They still don't want to give you a shot, they'll invent their own reasons why.

I'm sitting in a flat where the heating doesn't work, there's water coming through holes in the ceiling, I'm scared of being burgled every time I go out or meeting the downstairs neighbour when I come in. I'm banned/feel unsafe in so many places (can prove that) I have to travel an hour on a bus to find an area I feel safe being in (Crawley, but if I lived there it would probably end up like every other place I've lived in.) I've never had friends or a girlfriend - came close a few times but they were disabled and got taken away from me though we wanted to be together. When I go out I spend all my time looking at people in groups, talking on cellphones, going to be with groups, taking it all for granted and my envy's a knife in my gut. If I'm never going to have a shot, be honest, tell me and I'll leave this planet now, I've got a bottle of stuff I got off the Internet I know to be relatively painless, I'm not bad at science. But there's GOTTA be a way to have a shot, hasn't there? (I've got an online lady friend who's come to visit me ONCE, but her kids didn't approve of me seeing her and I'm too scared to go up where her kids are and she's too scared of their reaction to come down here so we're stuck online! She says she's too disabled to travel this far. I know she's not, she goes to see other friends equally as far as am I, all the time. Her having a son who's a fully-trained MMA warrior doesn't exactly help.....! !)

What do I try next?

You tell me.


Yours respectfully


Chris.



Mona Pereth
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31 Oct 2022, 12:21 am

Luckily you live in the U.K. -- which, as far as I can tell, has a better-organized autistic community than any place else in the world.

There are not many services for adults, but there do exist some organizations devoted to helping autistic people get technical jobs, which it appears that you may be qualified for. (A quick Google search has led me here, here, and here.)

Also, hopefully you can find someone to give you good advice on whatever social services you may need. If you have not done so already, try the National Autistic Society to see if they can refer you to such a person.

Hopefully also it will be possible for you to find support groups where you can be accepted.


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klanka
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31 Oct 2022, 3:24 pm

Try praying



DuckHairback
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31 Oct 2022, 4:21 pm

Disabilities that affect your physical appearance are tough. Humans are visual dominant creatures and that makes it very hard for them to accept people that don't look they way they expect other people to. Some can do it, for most it's too much effort. Your life sounds like it's been very hard, in many ways, and only you can evaluate whether it's worth it.

I don't know you, I don't know what you're good at. I don't know how much of the trouble you've had is pure misfortune and whether any of it is the result of behaviours you could change to improve matters.

But I do know that you can write. You write well. Not technically well, not all the time, but you communicate your situation well. You told your story and it was a good read. I don't mean that flippantly.

So you have this ability. You can tell a story. Did you know this?

I would say try writing next.


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temp1234
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01 Nov 2022, 6:41 am

You write so well as DuckHairback pointed out. I can't see why you couldn't have an intellectual job. Sure, when you are physically disabled, you need certain help and accommodation, but that's a normal part of employing a disabled person for any organization. I've seen a physically disabled man, who was a university lecturer, couldn't walk, couldn't use his hands very well and visibly very disabled with his hands and legs very short and small. He was on some kind of power chair. He was very successful in his career and married with a child. I believe you can also have a successful career and have a family.

I don't mean to say that you have a violent tendency or cause harm to anyone, but do you look that way, causing people to misunderstand what kind of person you are? If there is anything like that, could you get any disability organization to help you learn to look less threatening? For example, I was told that my facial expression was too serious and I looked like a difficult person, which gave a very bad impression. I was advised to be conscious of my facial expression and try to smile. You could try something like that, too?



klanka
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01 Nov 2022, 11:15 am

Hey just had a thought, in a church they can't reject you for those reasons. Now, people are still people in church so it wont be like an amazing reversal of fortune but I think its better than nothing.



autisticelders
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05 Nov 2022, 6:08 am

starting a blog or writing a journal to be turned into a book at some point, or doing active advocacy for a disability group may be appealing. You are definitely a writer, could you turn that into a career in one form or another? A lot of jobs are done from home these days using computers...it seems custom made for those of us who don't interact as well "person to person" in "real time". Do you have passionate interests that occupy your time? Can you start a forum or write about those things? Hosting an online forum of any sort or doing informative videos may be an option for you too.
I was never able to make friends until I began to focus on my interests. People with the same interests became involved and eventually we met up in person or online... I interact with a lot of people every day and it is great because we can talk about our shared interests, share activities around those interests, and share information about our interests. I didn't learn about finding interests and following them until I was in my late 60s. It worked for me. Hope it will work for you too.


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