13 February, 2010

If I am ever famous my answer to the big question

That's a hard question for me to answer because I'm a religious person and I feel like I don't know why God does things and just because something upsets me doesn't mean that it isn't part of some greater mosaic I don't understand. I mean, maybe God wanted me to have to learn about people in a systematic way because it means my love is more mathematical and apparent. Maybe people are always sort of foreign to me so they seem the way animals and trees seem to regular people.

I'll just come right out and say I'd rather have my homosexuality cured than my ASD. Being gay is more of a problem for me. For one thing, a developmental delay is just a delay and you can catch up. Obviously my whole ASD can't be summed up as a developmental delay. But some of it can, and the parts that remain are (in large part) things that I want that are weird things to want. But I've figured out how to get some of those things. And I expect to improve in both domains--catching up and figuring out how to get weird things. So it's complicated and everything, but it's not a block, it's something to think about and work around.

Being gay also comes in two parts. First it shuts you off from people so you have to learn how to lie or how to manage your lying. In the same area, the people you have a crush on don't have a crush back, so you have to work around it and have very intense friendships and stuff, and basically learn that there isn't only one kind of love, that you don't have to be a robot just because this one thing isn't feasible. The first domain is one I can work with, just like ASD. The second domain is the domain where you still sort of want the kind of love that you can't have. Unlike with ASD, I haven't figured out how to get this, and statistically I know it might not happen. This isn't ruining my life, but it is a block. I would say it's like missing an arm, but I don't know if people who are missing an arm actually feel that way. Maybe it's more like having a phantom limb or Body Integrity Identity Disorder.

So, I'd rather be straight. But that's not the answer you were looking for, is it? I'm supposed to be a less complicated person where ASD is my only problem. So, let's assume they found a cure for ASD but not homosexuality. Well, obviously I want it. And the idea that I'd be losing something (besides whatever side effects come from systematic love, etc.) is kind of like when queer-identified people try to pretend that all straight people are incredibly two-dimensional and gender-normative. It's possible to be a normal person who is intense about things and doesn't like parties that much and has serious experiences with color. That's the kind of normal person I'd want to be. So I could still do the same things. Also if I want I could be a social worker, a pastor, or a Latin teacher, or go and live in a foreign country without dropping out behind my eyes. Also I'd be a better faker so I'd probably be better at being gay. Who knows if I'd be gay if I wasn't ASD--so maybe you could kill two birds with one stone.

The problem is, though, that this is just an exercise, and curing ASD isn't very likely. What they are working on is just having people not be born. If that's your question, I would rather have been born, but thanks. Also, this isn't a question I think about very much because I have other stuff to do. And it makes me feel uncomfortable that you would ask me something like this. Can I ask you something overly personal and completely irrelevant about yourself?


  1. Why is it "obvious" that you would want to be cured? I wouldn't. I think my NLD/ASD gives me advantages as well as disadvantages. I am more exhausted by going through a day than the average person, but I can also be made happier by the sight of snow or a nice texture than the people around me. From my disability, I get lingustic and reasoning skills. I value all of these qualities, and I think that if I lost my ASD, there's a good chance that I would lose these things as well. I know that normal people can have lingusitic skills and logic and can sometimes get engrossed by a sensory experience, but since these things commonly occur with NLD and ASD, it seems likely to that in me, these traits are caused by my disability.

    I don't want to seem argumentative or judgmental towards you. Everyone has the right to want to change bits of themselves. I am just a bit surprised that this is one of the bits that you would change about yourself.

    (Incidentally, I am also gay, and I definitely wouldn't change that either, but then I am okay to date neurotypical people so maybe that's why I don't feel as sad as you do when I contemplate my dating prospects.)

    Okay, so I reread this to make sure it wasn't rude or mean, and I think it's not rude or mean but sometimes people are hurt by things I say even when I don't expect them to be. I really hope this comment isn't hurtful in any way, because I love your blog and wouldn't want to cause you pain.

  2. no, it's not mean at all, in fact I'm being really politically incorrect by saying I would want to be cured. it's actually not a huge deal, as I'm saying, there are a million other things I'd change first. but a lot of people are always saying they wouldn't want to be cured and I personally find that stupid (see, I'm being mean). obviously it's semantics what you even mean by "cure," but I just think it's silly that ASD people always take "cure" to mean being a really mainstream person. I mean yes if I wouldn't love colors or get really into things anymore, I'd still want to be ASD. but...yeah, would I want to have a more fluid understanding of other people, a mind that isn't made up slowly rotating boxes that takes a long time to switch from one to the other--where the boxes get smaller until people can't see them from far away, and don't understand why I get so stuck? I don't want modes of conversation, I want a conversation.

    I don't know if I should have written this post though because I definitely don't want to make it sound like this is a big deal to me or that I consider it to be a big problem. also I just think focusing on cure is a ridiculous idea because I think cure is impossible. it's just something I wanted to consider because when people say they wouldn't change it, I can't help but think they're just saying that for rhetorical reasons.

    I'm really tired/possibly still worn out about the whole dropping a class thing, but it just makes me angry that you say you wouldn't change being gay. I just think people are lying/deluding themselves when they say that. I mean, even if you take my Sad Math Exercise and take out the ASD thing (which isn't a for sure factor, but just when I think about it, I don't want anyone to other me and think that I'm fragile or adorable or otherworldly, and that seems like the way normal people have of being attracted to me)...it's still, like, no people. That sucks. I mean, maybe if you have no standards. or if you happen to be attracted to exactly the type of person that every lesbian either is or tries really hard to be (drinks a lot and has no hair).

    I'm really tired and will probably regret/delete this in the morning, I apologize, I should not get on this tack, it just makes me want to cry. I feel like T.H. White, I just really want to get married and have kids, and I wouldn't suck at it, I'm not a bad person, but being realistic I know it's never going to happen.

  3. I think you're being really unfairly stereotypical when you say that every lesbian either is or wants to be the kind of person who "drinks a lot and has no hair". There's as lot of diversity among lesbians, just as there is among people with ASD. Just as you don't like the ASD stereotypes that some people perpetrate, I don't like it when people have really stereotypical views of gays and lesbians.

    I am not lying when I say I wouldn't change being gay. I definitely have hair and do not drink at all. I am also currently having a happy romantic relationship -- my second, in fact. I don't want to say this because it feels like bragging, but it's kind of the only response I can think of to your saying that being gay means you can't find a date. Yes, if I was straight there would be a higher chance that any random person I met would be sexually compatible with me, but there's still plenty of lesbians and bisexual women, and so lots of chances for me(and you)to eventually find the perfect woman to settle down and raise a family with.

    Are you sure your wish to not be gay is all about the mathematical chances of finding someone? After all, those chances would be optimized if you were bisexual, not if you were straight. Maybe you're dealing with some internalized homophobia -- a lot of people go through that. I don't want to try to psychoanalyze you or anything, but it makes me sad that being gay makes you unhappy because I feel like it really doesn't have to.

  4. no, being bi would be fine, I guess I wouldn't especially mind that. although I think it is a little inconvenient because you can still get crushes on straight girls. I don't really have a preference between being bi and being straight.

    I don't know, all I can say is that you apparently live in a completely different universe from me, because most lesbians are like my description of a lesbian, in my experience. believe me, this isn't something I started out thinking, it sounds like kind of a shitty thing to think. it just has kind of turned out to be true. I don't know, maybe I should have gone to Vassar. (quote from my friend's friend explaining why he went to Oberlin instead of Vassar: "the circus people at Vassar are a lot more cliquey.")

  5. I think it's really sad, and insulting that you are making such assumptions about lesbians, because while in your area you may only know of lesbians who are all short haired and drink a lot. I know a few who are not like that, and they are really sweet people. You sound bitter, and well don't take it out on stereotyping lesbians. I am a lesbian, I have medium hair and I am not butch nor do I drink a lot..

    And I am on the spectrum *just* like you, and yes it is very hard and I know you have had a stressful few days due to dropping a class. And I am sorry that you want to be cured of your homosexuality, it's very hard for people to accept.. but I don't see a cure happening anytime soon.

    I would much rather have my Autism, Sensory Processing Disroder, and ADD cured because it makes my life very hard to deal with. It's not easy, and I would love to just be able to do something without having a total meltdown.

    I wouldn't cure my homosexuality, even if I had crushes on straight girls. And i wouldn't want to be bisexual or straight (bisexual girls get a bad, bad reputation.. so really.. it'd be easier to just be gay, or straight.. and I'd rather go to what I really am, which is a lesbian.)

  6. okay, I understand that not every lesbian on the entire planet is like that, but given that (as I mentioned) I'm a person who lacks fluidity in a lot of ways, I need all the luck I can get. as it is I can only have relationships with a very very very very small fraction of people, and most people don't want to have relationships with me, so my chances are pretty much nil, and I apologize for being "bitter" about that. it's cool that you guys are really lucky in relationships and everything, maybe you're really attractive so people approach you all the time, I don't know.

  7. LOL

    I don't mean to laugh at you, but Amanda I am *NOT* in a relationship. I cannot handle being in a relationship because I wouldn't know what to do, how to act and all the weird social rules that come with relationships. I am not lucky, I'm the FURTHEST thing from it. I wouldn't be able to tell if someone is flirting with me, and I don't even know how to do this so called flirting so chances are the chances of me having a relationship are null.

    and I am not exactly that attractive, in fact I'm quite normal-unaverage looking. So really, people aren't attractive to me.. so instead of making an assumption that I'm in a relationsihp you should ask. Which is no, cause my social skills are not up to 'par' with people my age.. not even with high schoolers.

    Sorry if i sound rude, but you slightly struck a nerve and I don't know how to re-word what I am saying in a more.. sweet fashion.

  8. I emailed you about this, I realized it's stupid for me to go on and on about my personal life in a really whiny way on a blog that uses my real name (and is occasionally intelligent).

    I apologize to both of you for stereotyping. I do get upset (both about this, and I'm still off-balance from the dropping a class thing, like you said) and I sort of get locked in specific patterns of thinking about things and I know they're not really accurate. But I feel like I'm not allowed to express any unhappiness about being gay, so sometimes I sort of explode and say really offensive things, even if I know that the things I'm saying aren't even true.