Saturday, April 12, 2014

Sometimes, I Can't Talk

Talking is not something that I have ever been very good at.   When I am extremely overwhelmed, whether it's sensory stuff (usually lights or too much background noise for me), or whether it's just emotional overwhelm, talking is not something I do well.

I make noises, I even form words.  Except....the words I am saying are not the right words.  I can't find the right words in those moments, so it often comes out with me yelling or saying words that aren't what my brain is thinking    I feel a lot of pressure to talk in those moments because people want to know what is wrong.  There have been numerous times when I even say "I can't talk now" and I am ignored.  This just makes things harder for me.

The questions keep coming.

Talking to me.  Talking at me.

Talking.  Talking.  Talking.

I just want it to STOP.

Unfortunately, very few people in my life respect that I need this to happen so that I can calm down.

So, they continue to talk and ask questions, and pressure me to talk..... and I continue to become escalated and upset.  Because I can talk a lot of the time, they refuse to accept that I can't talk in that moment.  

Honestly, I feel like it's a really selfish thing on their part.  It shows a marked lack of empathy for the way my brain processes information.

It's also extremely frustrating and disrespectful to me.  

If you are talking or interacting with an Autistic person and they ask you to back off, with words, or unspoken language, you need to respect that.  

It's not okay to keep pushing.   Even if you don't understand it.  

Me not being able to talk at some times is not anything I'm doing to you.  It's not an attack on you.  It's not me ignoring or disrespecting you.  It's me doing the best that I can to take care of myself so that I don't escalate.  So that I don't melt down.   It would be really nice if you would let me do that instead of adding to my anxiety.

Acceptance means not just tolerating or acknowledging who I am.  It means that even when you don't understand my reactions or processing, that you respect it.

This is part of me.  It's not easy for me, but making it about YOU certainly isn't helping.  

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