Today I thought I’m going to chronicle a little were I’m coming from, where I am right now and where I am going to. Of course all this deeply influences my point of view so I find it only fair you can take it in consideration when you read my words. Also while this story is of course my own many of these threads interwoven to be the fabric of my life are not very unusual. I read about my struggles frequently in accounts of other people who are substantially different. The more their differences overlap with mine the more it feels as if our lives have been eerily similar. So where do I come from? I’m afraid I don’t remember much about this. You see like many emotionally abused people I disassociated from myself most of the time. I have not recovered much from my memories. So this is one of many aspect of why I am without roots. I have to extrapolate from who I am today and how I feel to uncover my own past. Some facts I know like I’d know them if it was someone elses life. I know I have apparently been a low maintenance newborn sleeping through the night and a favourite of the nurses. That abruptly changed when my parents took me home. I’m pretty sure this change of environment was upsetting me and I can vividly imagining my parents gaslighting my emotions from day one. So I didn’t sleep through the night any more, I didn’t drink properly to the point that my mother had to stop breastfeeding me and even had to undergo medical treatment for all the unconsumed milk. I was apparently a constant whiner which reportedly abruptly stopped at the age of three. From around this time I have one of my few actual memories. Like most of them it’s more an intense moment of emotion rather than an actual story. I have been sitting on the kitchen table and my ever absent father was absent while sitting at the same table. A skill I have inherited. I think before my brief moment of remembrance I must have told him something. Maybe a story from kindergarten or what I thought about a story. I only remember his laughter and my reaction to it. My father uses this laughter often when it comes to what is important to me. All kinds of invalidation destilled in one laughter. So much condescension, so much ignorance and so much distance. I was deeply hurt but apparently I already knew better than to show my pain. That was the moment I decided not to treat him as a father but a hostile stranger I decided I did not want to hear this laughter any more so I’d do what I could to not share anything of notice with him. So that was the end of the relationship with my father. My relationship with my mother was more complicated. At times she tried to care for me and most of times my abusive extended family, her medication, her general inexperience in life, loneliness and overwhelmedness got the better of her. Obviously my mother was not someone I could rely on either. Apparently no one deemed it necessary to inform my parents before conception that children require work, food, money and emotional investment. Which turned out to be a big problem for whom consequently the weakest possible receptor was blamed. As a kid you believe EVERYTHING your parents tell you. There is a rather simple explanation for that: you are unable to survive without your caregivers and I’m pretty sure even very small children are aware of this especially when frequently placed in situations of need and no one to turn to. Being a rather bright special needs kid I would have required a LOT of attention, countless questions sometimes far too complicated to have an answer too even as an adult, once in a while one of the question slipped out anyway. I don’t have any specific memory but I’m rather certain my mother was rarely if at all patient and never had a satisfying answer anyway and my father was presumably never available enough to be bothered with the insignificant questions of a mere worthless child anyway. I’m assuming kindergarten wasn’t much fun either, I likely never knew how to connect to the other kids and my spotlight of recollected moments revolve around isolation even from the staff, ignorance of my problems and confusion. Unsurprisingly I was dying to go to school as early as possible. I had this hope I’d get some answers there, could prove my worth. Like so often in my life I was full of hope a change in environment would make everything better. It didn’t. There are so many accounts of bullied bright kids and bullied special needs kids, especially when undiagnosed, my story is one of them. To my classmates I wasn’t human, to my family I was never normal enough, and that was what they obsessed over. I was supposed to be a normal kid. I was supposed to have normal interests and there was absolutely no room for all this nonsense. Attempting to force me to play with dolls and wear dresses never went well. Being stubborn is also a family trait and all their bullying and all my desperate willingness to please to get another meal before I was kicked out wasn’t enough to make me not behead and shave my dolls. In school I never knew how to ask for help or how to alert people to my problems. All I knew was pain when attempting to do so. Pain and ignorance. At best helplessness. My only refuge have always been animals. By now I realise that it’s rubbish that animals are nonjudgemental. And really cat owners should know. Rather their criteria to judge are different. If you learn their respective languages and learn how to be kind to them they will be kind to you. My quest to be kind to the worst of abusers was unbroken so in animals I always found teachers willing to teach me right from wrong. Unlike with humans there was a consistent pattern of things to do and things not to do. It varied a little from animal to animal (both concerning individuals and concerning species of course) but I had the brain power to save and analyse all this data accordingly. For animals my inappropriate eye contact and my unskilled social interaction didn’t matter all that much. I screwed up a lot as a kid but I learned and unlike the humans in my life I learnt the animals are willing to forgive and move on. We got a cat when I was 16 and he and I were inseparable. To this day what I miss most from my estranged family is the cat. And then there is a long gap. Animals loved me because my willingness to speak to them at eye level rather than talking down to them and in their language or at least a mix of human/theirspecies is hardly heard of. Everything I desperately tried to make work with humans worked just as badly with animals but in their eyes I offered more than any human ever dreamt of. I passed their judgement with flying colours while I fail miserably in the same test if a human is the judge. So I became estranged from humans. And this has saved me. Throughout the years I managed to complete my A-levels at a private school, enrol in a prestigious study subject at a not so prestigious university all while being severely depressed, suffering from the effects and after effects of heavy long term emotional abuse and trying to navigate the world unaided with a severe pervasive developmental disability. Wherever I went I found more humans attempting to force me into their narrow little world, more bullying, more abuse, more ignorance, more pain. No psychiatrist and no university professor was different. The professors all applauded my intelligence but the professors, family members, fellow students, psychiatrists, “friends” all abhorred my inability to be a herd animal. In the end I finished my studies, if barely able to function any more. My marks aren’t that bad but my psyche has suffered tremendously. After decades of being pushed and pulled and getting truckloads of shitty advice on how to help myself (a warm cup of milk at night solves all my problems, I need to accept jesus as my saviour to get better, I just need to try for once, sport will help and this magic pill here, why dont you just go to bed at an earlier time and what the fuck is your problem anyway) I reached breaking point. I don’t want to have a place in this society no more. I know I can contribute in ways no one else can if given a chance and I refuse to walk on crutches and become ever more broken because its impossible to switch of the bleeding radio while I am around. I’ve bent over backwards so badly so long that I can’t walk properly any more, now it’s time for the humans to do their job and give me a place where this cripple fits in or they have seen the back of me. I’m bitter about my life, I’m bitter that no one ever stepped up for me and that no one ever gave me space to breathe. I’m mad at all these oh so social neurotypicals and not so neurotypicals letting a little gifted unique girl wither away right in front of their eyes and blaming her for it. I don’t see why I should struggle any more. All it has given me is more problems to deal with. Now I’m unemployed and my quest to find medical treatment seems to be directed by Franz Kafkas more sadistic sister. I have improved the depression which has followed me around ever so slightly.