Hi all, My name is Graham, I have signed up, and write this introduction on behalf of my partner Mandy who has Asperger Syndrome, Mandy is 57 , she has had what I would describe as an unfortunate life , diagnosed with "problems" her parents were told she may never walk, and would have severe mental problems , however Mandy from a very young age was a "livewire" and always on the go , however it was evident from the beginning , she was encountering difficulties in understanding , and was treated as if she was a problem child, that no one seemed to want to help, her Mum and Dad spent most of the time running pubs , and so Mandy was on her own ,often locked in a small room for her own "safety" .
things did not improve when she started school , and was either used or blamed by others, as Mandy's inability to understand so much that most of us take for granted made her a target for bullies, it soon became clear that Mandy just did not fit in, at school , as I am sure most of you are aware that in those days Asperger Syndrome was not recognised by the medical profession , Mandy feels that whenever something bad happened in school the other girls would often point the finger at her ,knowing that no one would believe Mandy. at 10 Mandy was sent to a boarding school for young ladies with "special needs", unfortunately anyone with a problem even naughty children were included , and Mandy soon fell in with the wrong type and found herself in "hot water" on many occasions.
During Mandy's time at school , she recalls being caned many times being made to sit on the "naughty chair " or stand in the corner with a dunces hat on, on a couple of occasions she says she was plunged head first into freezing cold water (by the teachers) to "calm" her down.
Mandy is a lovely girl (now woman) who craves friendship, but cannot seem to work out exactly how to accept that not everyone thinks as she does and Mandy can be very obsessive about friendships, not only wanting to keep in touch daily, but even bang on the same times of day , not realizing that most people don't want that sort of commitment and often are too busy at a given time . every aspect of Mandy's Day has to be in the form of routine , any noticeably change and "Meltdown" a scene no one will ever forget ,it can be highly distressing and leave an unforgettable mark on any one that witnesses one of Mandy's meltdowns. a nice mannered woman can turn into a monster with the most vile language one will ever hear , however the Meltdown is highly distressing for Mandy too , and here only impulse is to get out of the situation she is in and be on her own to calm down ,afterwards she is full of remorse and I have learned over the years to let this whole process run its course and just be there for her afterwards .
Mandy's behaviour can change in an instant though its usually a number of factors that have been "bottling up" that explode into fury at a seemingly small irritation or annoyance, that most people would simply turn and walk away from.
I met Mandy about 12 years ago , after a Marriage to an abusive thug of a man who abused and terrorized Mandy both mentally and physically , Mandy was again living on her own ,she had been placed in a sheltered accommodation, but it was doomed from the start, and there were lots of problems between Mandy and the other residents , we met via a pen pal website and after meeting up a month later , we had a rocky first few years , Mandy's regular meltdowns and inability to empathize caused great distress for both of us ,and I must confess I came pretty close to giving up a few times, its been a long haul but finally we have both settled into a combined routine that pretty much works , and after years of not getting any support Mandy is finally hungry to learn new things again and life is slowly getting easier .
I thought that if I could find a forum where she could communicate with others who may understand more about how life is for her, it may help even more, I will await (hopefully ) for some replies before unleashing Mandy (LOL) onto your forum.
thanks to those of you that managed to get this far without falling asleep.
gratefully yours, Graham