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1. What were your school days like? Were you bullied?
My school days were difficult, I had trouble mixing with other children. I was quiet in lessons if there were people I didn't know, preferring to sit on my own. When i was familiar with the children in the class then i was okay, having a a laugh and trying to be normal. I only had a small group of friends 1 or 2 because i found it hard to make new friends.
I was bullied when I was at school, usually because I was quite and because of my interests. I was used as well, people would pretend to be friends with me when they didn't have anyone else. Then when they found someone they didn't want to know me. Sometimes people would say things that they probably meant as a joke but I would take it to heart. And my defence mechanism was too tell the teacher because then i felt safe. I was picked on at games lessons too because i wasn't very good. When I got too the end of school, I used to skip lessons because I didn't want to go through with it.
2. How did you find out you had Aspergers Syndrome? What age were you?
When things got worse in 2004 and I was referred to a Psychiatrist, he told my GP that I could have Aspergers. I didn't know much about it so I was looking on the internet for more information and everything that I found was exactly me. When I had a different Psychiatrist (they changed every 3 months) I brought up aspergers again and she said that she thought I didn't have it which made me confused because the symptoms matched everything I did. When I was transferred to Herts Community Mental Health Team and saw another Psychiatrist he diagnosed me as having Aspergers but it took 3 years for them to find out what I had. I was 24.
3. What obsessional hobbies do you have?
I like movies and television. I collect dvds and videos, I have loads of them. I also collect photos and music on the computer.
4. What are you like in social situations?
Not very good, if its with someone I know then I'm okay and even then I am sometimes quite, only speaking when someone else speaks. I tend to avoid social contact
5. Do you have any other mental health problems (please state)?
I suffer from depression and anxiety. I also self harm when I feel pressured and angry. I also think I may have Bipolar though I haven't brought it up with my doctor yet.
6. What kind of help do you receive for your Aspergers?
I have been going to groups in the past at Mind and Cornerstones in Aylesbury Bucks to help me get out more and meet new people. I was also referred to The Richmond Fellowship In Aylesbury Bucks to help me get a job and I was taking a course at Learn Direct to help my with my Maths and English. Though I stopped going to everything in 2006 and haven't been going to Mind for a while because I have been feeling like I want to be on my own.
7. What do you think of AS Support Group Online?
I think its very helpful, it helped me to find out more about Aspergers and read about other people who have it.
8. Is there any organisation for people with AS that you'd recommend?
AS Support Group Online (our reply: Thanks :) )
9. How does your AS affect you?
I'm not very good at social contact, preferring to stay at home. I am okay on the Internet chatting to people but face to face no because I never know what to say and I'm frightened that they will pick on me.
I avoid the phone preferring to use email. I get anxious when I go somewhere I don't know and have panic attacks, tripping up, not looking before I cross the road, that sort of thing. I have to have a routine in my day otherwise I feel lost. I also get fed up a lot, sometimes I can be okay, next moment I feel down.
10. Do you feel that AS is part of your personality? why?
It does make me the person I am and I feel unique in a way to have Aspergers.