Have you ever felt like a jerk? Huh? Have you? Sure? Noooo, not really!
Well, I do. I feel like a total jerk. It’s one of the manifestations of my complete and total discomfort with Who I Am.
Yes, and it’s part of the problem with being an Aspie. Yes, I know I haven’t written about being an Aspie before. That’s because I didn’t have a “formal diagnosis,” just a lingering suspicion buoyed up by results of countless online quizzes.
I have confronted my psychologist about this a number of times, and she has hemmed and hawed about it, and said things like, “Haven’t we been over this ground before” and “You know you are, so why do you need a formal diagnosis?”
DAMMIT, I NEED THE FORMAL DIAGNOSIS SO THAT WHEN I TOTALLY FUCK UP AND MISINTERPRET SOMEONE’S INTENTIONS, I CAN LOOK AT MYSELF AND INSTEAD OF FEELING LIKE A TOTAL JERK, I CAN SHRUG AND SAY, “I’M AN ASPIE, AND ASPIES OFTEN MISINTERPRET PEOPLE’S MEANING, THAT’S ALL.”
She doesn’t get it. She is so awfully, awfully neurotypical, it’s starting to get on my nerves.
One of several reasons I feel like a jerk at this moment is that I have already actually been a jerk twice that I know of, just this week, and it’s only Wednesday; and I suspect that one of the jerkees might have outed me to another person whose esteem I value, thus spreading the jerkness high and low.
And still I hear Dr. What’s-Her-Name saying, a bit irritably, “You’ve got plenty of diagnoses already. What do you want with another one?”
I want a reason for why I misunderstand people all the time, for why I’m so naive, for why I get taken in by people with ill intentions all the time, for why I never, ever, for one moment have felt like I belong on this planet. THAT’S what I want.
I want this diagnosis to be formalized so that when I do some stupid thing for an Aspie reason, I can just go ahead and say to myself, “Well, there you go, being an Aspie again, you couldn’t have seen that one coming but please try not to do that one again.”
She can’t fathom why in the world having a diagnosis of Autistic Spectrum Disorder, NOS would be such a comfort to me. I have tried to get her to understand:
VALIDATION, VALIDATION, VALIDATION. Did I say it loud enough?
No, probably not, because I can’t tell if she’s being sarcastic and saying yes, of course, I know you’re an Aspie, so why are we even having this conversation? Or conversely, no, I don’t think you’re an Aspie, so why are you harping on this?
Ugh. I don’t know why I have to fight for a formal diagnosis of the SINGLE MOST IMPORTANT ASPECT OF MY SELF-NESS of all.
Yes, I am bipolar, have ADD, PTSD, LMNOP alphabet soup…But the one thing that has given me my triumphs and caused the most pain is Asperger’s Syndrome.
Syndrome. Not disorder, although it has served me up plenty of disorder. Yep, we even talked all about the various types of miseries Asperger’s has got me into.
But really, I feel like a jerk, and I don’t even want to explain why.