Olives are not the only fruit #autism

November 4, 2016 § 1 Comment

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Except they are. Well, apart from bananas. This is what functional gut disorder means in my case. There are virtually no fruits left that I can tolerate but I’m pleased about olives because I LOVE olives.

Occasionally I eat other fruits but stick to one or two raspberries, or three strawberries. Mainly to minimise the damage, knowing that any more will be disastrous and not worth such  temporary bliss on the tongue. They taste good but they don’t do good.

I’m not complaining because I’ve learnt to adapt to my extremely poor digestion with the help of the very lovely and talented @flojoeasydetox who has given me dietary advice that enables me to live and work effectively – something no-one else has ever achieved and I’ve been to more medics and nutritional specialist than I care to mention. For this, and because she’s lovely, I LOVE Flo (she also takes Skype consultations if you’re interested.)

Being autistic brings with it co-mordbid conditions and dietary intolerance seems common.

But I haven’t really come on to the blog to write about this, however debilitating and eroding it has been to deal with over the years. I just felt so cheerful about olives today, so grateful and happy to have them. So they come first.

More important is my growing understanding of how some people can make you feel like their time is more important than yours as an autistic thing – a thing that happens to autistics I mean. ALSO how bad this feels.

Today I spent a lot of time counselling a young autistic person on some serious social worries. Neurotypicals vs autistic social processing translated, if you like. The metaphors which helped most were fast lane/ slow lane (even hard shoulder at times), and paternoster / elevator. Not hard to guess which is NT and which is autistic!

As I spoke with my young colleague I felt on absolutely certain ground. Hey – this is so not personal when you look at it like this. What seems like indifference is just heavy a volume of  traffic for them while you’re interested in one to two cars.  Also think about what the NTs miss out on – they miss out on spending time with you. Don’t think so much about fitting in and accommodating their needs – they have so many options they won’t even notice how much effort you’re putting in. You do what you need to do for you – conserve your energy.

Without realising it I was counselling myself.

A strangely challenging situation I’ve been dealing. Wow. THAT. A person making me feel their time was more important than mine because they were so busy.

Thing is with autism is that our processing is often slower putting us at a huge disadvantage in understanding the subtle balance of power exerted by those more ‘socially skilled’.

Conclusions :-

Jeanette Winterson’s Oranges Are Not The Only Fruit  is the inspiration for the title of this blog – I recommend it.

Also that for autistic people to locate and ground ourselves in social spaces we must first find not only bodily sustenance, but also the metaphors with which to legitimise the bodily manifestations of neurology. Neurotypicals may cruse the fast lane and whizz round and round in the paternosters of social life but this can mean that they are incapable of valuing autistic perspectives.  And so we must start by valuing ourselves.

Lesson learned.

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