The Hidden Village of Aspergers

November 24, 2010

From 20 to 40 to 20 again

Filed under: mental illness,self-injury — kankurette @ 9:08 pm
Tags: , ,

As I’ve said before, Aspergers and mental health problems are, for me, two sides of the same coin, a beast with two heads. They feed each other. My paranoia, my anxiety, my social difficulties and everything else are amplified when I’ve forgotten to take my meds, and I think Action Palestine are putting posters on trees as a warning that they’re coming to get me, or that my colleagues are all ganging up on me. It’s a pretty awful combination. Throw ME into the mix as well and you have added brain fog and achyness and fatigue and dizziness and yada yada.

I’ve had the latter since last year and it’s not letting up. An ex-colleague suggested I get my white blood cell count checked. Been there, done that. Then again, he also claimed I had Postviral Fatigue Syndrome, which – as any other ME sufferer who’s been through the ringer will tell you – is an old name for ME. Recently, work has been pretty hellish, given that I had to work a double shift on Monday to get over two hours’ worth of case notes typed up for my boss to read. Granted, it was a big case, and it took three secretaries to type the damn things – go team! – but by the end of the day, all I wanted to do was take some painkillers, have a bath and a sandwich – I was too exhausted to wash my hair or cook – and sleep, sleep, sleep. I took yesterday off as I don’t get paid overtime – I take time off in lieu – and spent most of it recovering. I still am recovering.

I also spent a good amount of Monday’s shifts crying. Partly because of the case itself and partly because I was so scared of making a mistake or not getting everything done in time. When I have a backlog, I get stressed, and when I get stressed, I get ill, and round and round we go. Unfortunately, with the stress comes unsavoury thoughts. This is not the first time I’ve sat at my computer and thought about knocking back the bleach we keep in the toilet, or making a noose out of the pretty pink ribbon we use for briefs to Counsel, or smashing my glass and ripping myself to shreds with the pieces. But I didn’t, obviously. Partly because I wondered who would clean up the mess, and partly because I managed to keep it together and get back to work.

I wonder how much of this is due to the decrease in meds. I’m not going to lie. Part of the reason I went back down to 20mg Citalopram was because I thought, “I gained a load of weight when I upped the dose. If I cut the dose in half, maybe I’ll lose weight.” Pharmacology fail! I am still somewhere between 79 and 80 kilos and not getting thinner. It doesn’t help that I can’t exercise because I’m too tired half the time (yes, I know, exercise makes you less tired, but oddly enough that isn’t the case with me, and if anything I get that pesky delayed recovery thing where you think you’re going to be OK and then – kaboom! the fatigue kicks in) and because of any change in routine being hard to keep up. The routine in question is my diet. I am gradually trying to cut out bad foods, but old habits die hard, although at least I’m not back on the Exlax again.

I’ve been suicidal at work before. One of my colleagues hated me, and countless times I wanted to go into the toilet and off myself because I just couldn’t cope. Being constantly subjected to someone who makes it obvious she doesn’t like you can have that effect. Every time I’ve attempted suicide, the motive has remained the same: I have pissed someone off; I am a bad person; they would be better off if I died; I’m going to kill myself.

Maybe I’m being impatient, but you’d think the meds would have kicked in by now. I don’t like fucking with my body’s chemistry, but neither do I like the uncertainty of knowing what dose to take. I also don’t want to change meds, weight issues notwithstanding, because of the withdrawal I’d have to go through, and Citalopram has been the best of three. Prozac was OK, but not quite what I needed, and Sertraline turned me into a sexless droid and made me bitter about the fact that I could not give my girlfriend at the time what she wanted. Citalopram helped calm me down a bit. Obviously, it won’t kill the Aspergers, but there’s no medicine that can, and I’m not sure how I’d feel if there was one, but that’s another issue entirely. It tones down the anxiety, which is the one thing I really need.

There’s also the worrying fact that recently, I was in bed when I heard a noise that sounded like a woman screaming and saying, “Help me”. I was too exhausted to get out of bed, but I lay there worrying, what if it was real? What if someone was being tortured and killed, and I was lying there doing nothing? And the screaming just went on and on, to the point where I didn’t know it was real, or if it was me, and I lay there wishing for it to stop, or at least for some confirmation that I would know what was real. I wished it was just my imagination, but then hearing the sound of screaming in my head is not really something I want. Particularly when it’s so clear and stark you almost believe it’s real and are that close to rushing outside in the first thing you can throw on.

Hopefully it was a one-off and is nothing to do with the meds reduction. I know it wasn’t to do with work because it happened before the case came in.

Oh well. So it goes.


  1. Umm,,, have you read your own post? It’s making you fat, hallucinate and you’re still miserable? It’s worth pointing out the the Royal College of Psychiatrists’ say people with ASD’s can show an “idiosyncratic response” to psychotropic medication. Speaking with 40 years of experience of Asperger’s and the MHS, I’d say take anything They say with a pinch of salt antidote.

    Has anyone discussed with you, ß-blockers for anxiety?

    Comment by Socrates — November 27, 2010 @ 10:07 pm | Reply

  2. I’m on Citalopram too, we should start a club!

    Tev x

    Comment by Tev — December 2, 2010 @ 2:38 pm | Reply

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