Monday, 17 December 2012


I've met quite a few people who probably qualify for an Asperger diagnosis. My mother for one. My brother for two. Etc. Two of the five women I consider my friends, have a lot of traits, too.

When I first started thinking my youngest son probably was an aspie, I was seeing W, who most likely IS an aspie. At that time my excellent student worker completed his education and we had to hire somebody else. I was at the interview when C applied for the job. I despised him, but my superior said his grades were brilliant and we had to hire him. I really disliked C. He was weird, aloof, and strangely immature. But he was also very bright, ambitious, and very good at computer programming stuff. In fact he was so good, that I had to do the menial work myself and think hard to come up with tasks that matched his competences.

I was irritated with C for almost all the time he was my student worker. Towards the end of his employment with us (he also completed his education), my irritation faded and eventually I almost liked him. He must have been Asperger.

Some time later, a woman applied for a job - a position similar to mine. I was again at the interview, this time with another superior and a close colleague. The woman, H, talked constantly for an hour. And said some weird things along the way. She had a strange expression on her face. She behaved like a robot and didn't notice when we were indicating that we wanted to leave. She also had the strangest CV I've ever seen. She had nurse training I think, a Masters degree in a foreign language and a PhD in science. She had changed jobs constantly. After the interview, which mostly consisted of H talking, my colleague and I just wanted to go back to work. We said she was strange, but, well, qualified. And my superior was anxious to get the 'problem' off his back. So we hired her, it seemed the easiest solution at the time. Regrettably, because a few months later, she and I shared an office. And I was annoyed beyond description. She couldn't understand 'signals' at all. Such as: When I sit and stare into my computer and look concentrated, almost angry, it means that I am concentrating on what I do and I prefer not to be disturbed. When I also put on big earphones, it means that I really really don't want to be disturbed. Of course, H must have been Asperger. And I was truly irritated with her.

I am not irritated with all aspies. I love my two dear female friends. I find Sheldon of the Big Bang Theory amusing, and only a bit irritating. I dated an Aspie for more than four years. In fact, I must have loved him. But when all the traits (my traits?) present themselves in one person, I feel very strongly (negative) about it. I remember the overwhelming irritation from my childhood, when my brother again said something that to me seemed inappropriate. And when my mother was weird, and seemed proud of it. And both C and H provoked a strong physical sense of irritation.

Why? Clearly I am reminded of my own defeats, when I did something similar (said something strange, inappropriate, or incomprehensible), and as soon as I heard the words I knew they were wrong. Or when I was aloof without knowing it, and people closed down. Or when I was immature. Or when I didn't get the signal. Etc.

Sorry C, H, mother, brother, and others. It wasn't you. It was me. I wasn't irritated with you. I was irritated with myself. Now I will be more tolerant. With you all. Including myself.

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