OK, let me talk about “10 Perks Kids With Autism Get From Bullying,” the article from Autism Daily Newscast that has autistics up in arms. For starters, I ran the title by my mother, who said it was “foolish.” Her word, not mine. Let me say for now that it is like saying “10 Benefits African Americans Get From Racism.,” an article not written (yet) that would cause an extreme outrage and protest all its own. You can google the shameful, ableist article that justifies ostracizing kids through physical and mental violence, which is the textbook definition of bullying.
What I Learned From Bullying:
1) Avoid anyone my age. No one relates to me.
To this day, I do not have any close friends who were born between 1974 and 1983. (I was born in 1977, in case you were wondering.) All my classmates live far away, and I can only contact them through Facebook.
2) Authority does not look out for you; in fact it eggs bullying on.
Everybody knows sensitivity training and anti-bullying programs are simply legal and societal alibis, used to shield any responsibility for the eventual school shooting that comes from the eventual loneliness and isolation that bullying creates. Also, when I went to school and church authorities about the bullying I was enduring through the social circles of the time, I was told “Ignore them,” and “Maybe he likes you.” How do you ignore something which gets into your face and threatens physical harm? I hate to say it even now, but one of my youth counselors would join in on the jokes to win the bullies over.
3) Autism Hatred Every Month
For example: much of the bullying was due to me liking New Kids on the Block. I got most of this in seventh grade. I was so bullied, I ended up feeling this was a horrid secret I was supposed to keep away from the general public, as if liking NKOTB was on par with pedophilia (wanting to sex up kids). I eventually learned Autism = Pedophilia as well, so I kept that a secret until my senior year.
4) My skills I developed were subterfuge, lying, and reclusion.
TRUth and TRUst begin with the same three letters. I learned I could trust no one. The only things I learned were to fight dirty, lie, sabotage, and hide. I was a filthy animal as far as anyone else was concerned.
5) Built an Abuse-Accepting Pattern of Being Controlled
This eventually led me to believe that abusive behavior was okay. I did not expect any better from people, because I did not know any better. Another maxim I have to still shake off: People are basically evil, and must be controlled by another force. I mean, I expect the worst in people now. Maybe that’s why I am pushing 40 and still single. This leads to:
6) No Friendships, and Extreme Suspicion of Good People
Again, I have nobody my age I can relate to, except on Facebook. In my first post, Facebook and the Mellaril Nightmare, I have expanded on my confusion as to people wanting to even be my Facebook friend. I mean, bullying is a way to ostracize the undesirables out of society. You make fun of the people you hate. It’s the only thing that makes sense to me. These people made fun of me to my face and behind my back, and the only thing which made me even want to consider clicking on that Accept button was an apology from one of them.
7) A Decline in Overall Well-Being
With all this swirling around in my head, I was cut off from any help, unless it came through therapy. I hated myself for years, and am only now getting to like myself again, though it still only comes in spurts. Only in the past nine years have I showered regularly without being forced to, for instance. I was not worth it, I thought.
8) Abusive Relationships, because I was a Freak
I’m not going to name names, but I was abused for years because I thought deep down I deserved it. I was an undesirable freak who was lucky that person was in my life to protect the world from me. (That was what the abuser said to me, in so many words.)
9) Decreased Life Skills and Life Appreciation
Why would I take care of myself? How could I love my neighbor if I did not love myself? Was I even worth getting out of bed, and even worth living?
10) No Self-Esteem, and Suicide Ideation
Eventually, this led to not having any appreciation for anything life had to offer, and a general hatred of life. I began to imagine what it would be like if I was dead, and I wrongly concluded that it would be better without me. I also began to formulate a plan: I would find a room or toilet with a drain, and slit my wrists. The blood would be disposed of.
WHAT EVENTUALLY SAVED ME
I learned that the world would be a worse place for my mother, and a few others, if I died. I could not go through with it, once I learned that my mother would be screwed. She should not be responsible for keeping me alive, but God keeps reminding me that if I die, several other people would be screwed, both physically, mentally, and spiritually.
I eventually also learned that bullying is wrong, and I would be letting the terrorists in my life win if I removed myself from living. I could not let that happen. I have had to tell myself daily that I am worth the fight.