@AC re: "Aspergers *can* be quite debilitating" etc... Wed 21st Oct 2009 22:20 GMT
I am very sorry you have suffered, I know its a common problem for Aspergers but hopefully this will help. (I know some (more than a few in fact) in the technology industry are Aspergers, because they are very much attracted to that kind of detailed complex work and can be very good at it). So unfortunately its a common problem for people in this industry. When you say "suffer constant anxiety" - That isn't directly caused by Aspergers, that is caused by the actions of some other people against you and your resulting own perception of how you fit into society *based on* their actions against you. You need to learn some people will accept you and some won't no matter how hard you try to conform to what they expect. But some will accept you - please remember that. Also even the most well intentioned non-Asperger people don't understand Aspergers at all, and their attempts to understand usually totally fail, but that doesn't stop some accepting you as you are.
Also often Aspergers idealised view of the world can prevent them seeing and believing a minority of society relentlessly seek to influence, lie and manipulate others for their own gain, so not everything that everyone tells us can be taken at face value. Don't judge people by what they say, judge them by how they treat others (spotting empathy is the key) and if they wouldn't like to be treated how they repeatedly treat others, that's a sure fire warning sign to avoid that person. There are a lot of people in this world, so you have a lot to choose from to find friends.
When you say, "chances of a "normal" way of life" - Define "normal" ... there is no normal, life is what we *choose* to make of our time on this planet to make us happy. Normal isn't fitting into a pattern of behavior which others choose to define for us. No one has the right to attempt to manipulate us into conforming to their expectations. Life is what we choose. Its our life, not theirs.
It greatly saddens me how so many Aspergers with such potential are through their experiences and interactions with others, been bullied into a pattern of behavior where they are made to feel bad about being an Asperger. Its an all too common problem, but you can learn to see beyond it. (This bloody legal case isn't helping, as its running down Aspergers the whole time. I've grown to utterly hate this manipulative case where both sides are vying for position).
One interesting thing for Aspergers is when they realize there are some people in this world who try all their lives to stand out in a crowd. These people are relentlessly driven to stand out. Yet Aspergers however think and feel different, so they have always had, what some other people spend a life time trying to achieve. That may just sound interesting now, but take that to heart. The more you think about that the more you realize you can finally relax and be you. After all being different isn't wrong and being different is easy, eccentric is easy, its attempting to conform that is the difficult part of the act, but its such a huge relief when you suddenly realize, you no longer have to conform. Its your life, not anyone else's to choose for you how you should conform. There is no normal and anyone who says differently, is attempting to define their expectations of what they expect people to conform to. They also need to learn there is no normal. No pattern to conform to. Life is how we *choose* to live.
So stop trying to conform and just *learn* to be happy and *learn* to become finally at peace with just being you. You can learn to have confidence and self esteem by just being you. I emphasize learn, because it literally is a process of having to learn how some people will accept us and others will never accept us, no matter how hard we try to make them happy. So there is no point in trying to win the acceptance of the ones who won't accept us no matter what we do. But there are billions of people in this world and so everyone has millions of people to choose from to find the ones who will be happy to know us and accept us and can in time become friends. Also as an Asperger you can learn to see patterns in the world others walk on past and never see. That can be fascinating to share these insights with some people who are interested in discussing and sharing their observations, as we all attempt to refine our understanding of the world around us. Not every is interested, but thats life, they are interested in other things. But it helps to find a few friends who are interested in the stuff we are all interested in.
So don't let anyone dishearten you by talking down to you for being different. The ones who attempt to talk down to you have something to gain from talking down to you. (By suppressing any difference they find in people, that in turn wins them the center of attention and they try to make people feel difference is so wrong, when in fact its their attention craving insecure abuse of others that is wrong. But their relentless need for attention is also their Achilles heel). After all they wouldn't like to be talked down to, so they have no right to talk down to others. So don't let anyone dishearten you. Just ignore them, don't bother arguing with them, just ignore them as its an attention seekers worse fear. (Same tactic works against the minority of people who seek power over others. When they are ignored they haven't got power). There are many good people in this world, just a few bad apples to avoid, but unfortunately the bad ones fight to get in our faces all the time.
I sincerely hope this helps. I know its a problem for people in this industry. Its not easy to learn self esteem. It takes time, but you can learn it and learn to be happy being you. Aspergers is an advantage. For example we all have to specialize in our chosen careers and Aspergers have an advantage in this regard so they can learn to be good at their work. Thats a very good thing that many will respect in life (not just work).
Anyway, it looks like this case still has a lot more media coverage and manipulative legal chess moves to endure. (P.s. sorry TheReg for this long post, but I felt this was very important to say in reply).