I have remained active in the Asperger's/Autism and mental illness community since only a few months before I received my official diagnosis less than a year after Asperger's became suspected. At that time, I completed almost three semesters of college with nothing to show for it except angry family and a doctoral thesis that has - four years later, now - yet to see the light of day. I thought with every ounce of my existence that my intelligence was enough to get me through college and eventually to a doctorate in psychology. I was, of course, very, very wrong, and getting my official Asperger's and ADHD plus discalculia diagnosis gained me no help in college. To this day I have something like 12 credits. When I received my diagnosis, I was also given the score of my very long IQ test, which only further made me think my intelligence was going to save me. I continued making videos on Asperger's, psychopathy, and psychology in general under the youtube name of DizzyDollie7, where others confirmed (though unneeded) that I am intelligent and would one day make a great psychologist.
My videos grew a small following and I began this blog - most of my videos were highly impersonal and most have since been bought where they are displayed on ownshrink.com, as are most of the entries on my blog. I was told I come off as a bit dry and sciency, but that's how my mind works, and that's how I preferred to write; if any future patients did research on me, they would only find out that I was always, indeed, good at what I do. I rarely even spoke about my published novel "Euthanasia" or the two sequels I had completed by age 19. Even after a year-long break from the college world, I remained confident that I writing was a side project and by age 24 I would be working under a psychologist while I furthered my education. I wrote articles while I was pregnant, diligently, after bombing out of college yet again. Only after being taken off that job and giving birth to my daughter did I begin to realize that writing and art (I paint and I draw) might actually be my best bet for survival thanks to the bureaucrats who allow education to be more about participation in silly games than about actual ability and intelligence. College had somehow become a competition to make friends with others and join clubs all while underneath bright fluorescent lighting while annoying young human beings yammer and yammer about things that make absolutely no sense.
After all, I had panic attacks in the classrooms and followed directions so literally that I often had to call professors of any online class I took to ask them what the hell they actually wanted. College simply was no more. And now I had a baby and she became my top priority. I took care of her, and while she slept, I wrote my fourth novel and painted paintings which I began to sell.I also continued therapy, which I had been in for over a year, and my online presence became decidedly more personal. I stopped watching my language, and I got a little bit more candid, though it admittedly feels like acting at times. I was back on the anxiety medication that I had been on before my pregnancy, and was having a horrific time with the idea of being the least bit social outside of my tiny family and occasional interactions at the store (and of course, my internet friends.) Basically, whoever I could deal with and could deal with my newly emerging and openly gregarious hatred for the mere idea of human connection, while also somehow seeking it out.
My doctor finally talked me into, by gently explaining to me that the exact reason college had not yet worked for me were the reasons getting a job would be absolutely reckless for everyone involved, especially with a new baby, that I am indeed disabled. A neuroscientist had deemed it so far before I called it quits with college, quietly smirking at my friends with Master's degrees who were equally unemployed (including, for a while, my very neurotypical husband who watches me disable all over the place daily.) I filed for disability, they pulled my records, and a few months later I was one of those people who gets money for being unable to work. Disabled. Or as some like to call it, "lazy bad person who leeches off the tax money of hardworking people who are actually funding more war than they are funding my existence." Honestly, you'd be supporting me more if you bought a book than by paying your godforsaken taxes.
Note I say I had to be talked into applying for disability, despite how obviously disabled I am once you're in my daily life. That means there was a sense of shame involved. Trying to make a living off of books and art was like trying to climb out of a well, and I'm still trying, because like most people with a disability, I don't actually like being disabled. People ask me what I do, and I tell them - I write, I paint, I research, and I raise my child. Seeing as their parents did not take the time to raise them correctly, the proceed to prod about my income. No, writing isn't enough to live on. I'm not famous yet. No, disability isn't enough to live on. Everyone comes out of the woodwork with "My friends aunts cousin's fishes owner has Asperger's and he got a job at Burger King," and I have to remind them that not everyone is disabled by their Asperger's and that I'm certain that guy doesn't want to blow his brains out when he gets home everyday.
And then there's the "you're so smart." Yes. I know. And I fully believe my intelligence is tied directly to my disability. You have google, I'm sure you can quickly find out that if I have Asperger's, I am a socially inept, rigid, anxious nerd who cannot handle noise or lights or people and my brain might be shaped like a colorful puzzle piece. I often feel like I need an assistant just to drive me around because I cannot deal with interstates and then I might get more done out there in the big world. But that isn't happening because disability services won't provide me with an assistant - I asked. (Kidding, maybe.). I can't do math but I'm about 97% sure that my intelligence has gotten me into more trouble than it has actually improved upon my life. So, I've become more open about my interests from my own perspective rather than simply that of a textbook, and, save a slew of swearwords...the perspectives are almost exactly the same. And my disability and I are okay with that.