I’m scared

I’m scared that if I leave the house I’ll meet somebody I know. I’m scared that they will talk to me and I’ll have to be not rude and talk to them. They know how I am as they’ve already asked Lovely Husband.

Things like ‘it’s good to see you out’; ‘it’s good to see you making an effort’; ‘how are you’; ‘you should try coming back to church’… Even if I venture out after several quiet days in and I’m feeling ok these questions would displace me. I immediately become poor Tracey. I’m disabled. I’m overwhelmed by questions that you expect an immediate answer to but I would rather have time to consider, and if I do take time to consider you are filling in the gap; the sound of your voice makes me flinch… I start feeling what I call ‘fizzy’. It’s a warning sign and I need to heed it immediately. I say I have to go, I need to go… ‘but what about your family…how is…?’ I need to go, I start to turn but the talking, the questioning continues. I give short answers, robotic answers while attempting to ‘escape’. I rush home trying to contain the tears until I’m safely inside. I’m in overwhelm. I go to bed early. The overwhelm has triggered the anxiety button. I don’t sleep. If I do sleep I awake suddenly feeling extremely anxious for no reason. I tell myself it’s ‘just’ (!) anxiety. The following day it continues. I need deep quiet. Sudden anxiety overtakes me from nowhere. It takes such effort to overcome it. I find some release in creativity willing it to make me feel better. As the anxiety lessens the depression starts and I battle from spiralling downwards. Maybe a week hence, after days of quietness, I start to feel better. I hope.

The thing is, if the conversation was different I might cope. Talk to me about the act of creating; the dilemmas of marrying theory to practice; what different yarns feel like; what threads I/you prefer using; your attempts and triumphs of creating; how you dug the ground to create a new garden…

I want to go out but I’m scared you won’t give me the space to be me.

I’m scared of posting this in case you think it’s a pity me party.

It’s not. I want to be understood.

I want to go out.

Author: yarnandpencil

I'm a Christian on the autistic spectrum blogging about life and my art/craft practice.

6 thoughts on “I’m scared”

  1. When I go on big outings, I use my wheelchair – that’s a big outward symbol of disability if ever there was one. Almost without fail there will be some painful person, usually a total stranger, that has to make some comment, or ask a personal question about my wheelchair or why I am using it or how I came to use it. The other strange phenomena are strangers who feel compelled to tell you some story about someone they know who has a disability or medical condition and it surprises me how much personal information they are willing to divulge to me, a stranger, about themselves or their own loved ones! I wonder if their loved ones would appreciate their personal business being broadcast to strangers like that!

    It is so tiresome and quite upsetting after a while. One goes out and about to live a life – a normal life – to escape the daily challenge of chronic illness if only for a few hours, by distracting oneself with a pleasant activity only to have the pleasantries squashed by some rude, ignorant stranger whose got more curiosity than manners.

    These people don’t care about us. They just want to satisfy their own curiosity! I don’t give them the satisfaction. Depending on the situation and my own disposition, I will often ignore them and move away but sometimes ask them a question right back: “Why do you think it is appropriate to ask personal questions of total strangers. When did you last have a pap smear/prostate check?” I got “What happened to you?” asked of me yesterday. I replied, “what happened to you?” (forgot your manners, perhaps?)

    It’s a lot harder when you meet acquaintances but you can still say, “Excuse me, I can’t talk right now” and continue on your journey. Sometimes you get the annoyingly rude people who cannot get the hint and will follow you down the street. If you have already told them you can’t chat right now, just repeat. “I can’t talk right now. Please stop following me / talking to me. I need to be by myself”. If they continue on regardless, then it becomes harrassment. You are in your rights to say to them “Stop harrassing me. Please go away!” They will accuse you of being rude as a defence mechanism (denial of their own rudeness) when the reality is, they are being rude for not respecting your need for space and independence and privacy. The worst that will happen is that they will be so offended they leave you alone! Those sorts of people do not have your best interests at heart.

    I’m sorry that you have so much stress trying to have a simple outing. It isn’t fair. I wish other people would mind their own business.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Gosh Jodie, that is so surprising. I guess that happens here in the U.K. too but maybe less as Brits are more reserved…? Thank you for your advice, I’m going to remember that 🙂 Thanks too for commenting xxx


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