When I Need A Pick Me Up, by my friend Ryan King

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

The People Whisperer

I can't watch a convincing portrayal of an Asperger's Syndrome person without identifying with them. I've done this before, blogged about myself in terms of my possible diagnosis. Well, here we go again. I don't think I've detailed how much I think I'm like Abed on NBC's Community, but of course, I am. Now there's a new autistic character on Syfy's ALPHAS who I'm much less alike than I am like Abed...and mind you, I'm not as monotone as Abed is. Not as grandly "different" (and entertaining) but ... I sit outside of people's experiences and look in and THAT'S the common thread that I feel with all the autistic characters, severe or otherwise, that I see on TV & movie screens.

I choose to believe that this lends me some skill in a bunch of areas. I think, for instance, that I'm a good writer because I pay attention to my observations. I also think I'm a good therapist because I can read a lot of the cues in voice, body language, and language-choice use. Those are good skills to have, right?

Of course, the drawbacks are phenomenal. Obviously. The drawback = a disorder. That's why it's got a label, or is given "syndrome" as a last name. Having this thing that makes me different has limited my life in major ways.

So let me share with you what this syndrome looks like from inside of my head looking out; "If I don't feel safe, I don't do it."

Sounds simple, right? Doesn't even sound like a disorder. Ah, well no ... the basic principle is not the disordered part. The basic principle is survival instinct. It has helped bring us through the millenia as a viable species.

No, the level I take this instinct to is what makes it a disorder. When I can't figure out a thing in order to make my world a safe place, I avoid that thing. And so, I think my adaptation has caused be to be able to figure out people in a way to foster safety for myself. People aren't so scary if I can quantify them and explain their behaviors to myself. When you're bullied in elementary school on up, you find that a real necessary skill for survival.

But what I haven't been able to figure out is this whole sexual terrain. I haven't been able to regulate the information of sex. I haven't had morality explained to me well enough to accept it.

Now, I did TRY to get it figured out when I went to extreme religion at 16. I took all the information in, hook, line and sinker. I made it my instructions for life operation. And it woorked for a good while. Kept me nice and cozy and gave me a safe place to live-- until my sexual urges stopped fitting into that framework.

Now 30 years later, I haven't found a suitable replacement for the lost information. I'm gay. So how does THAT work? Butt sex? Really?? Where there's FECES??? How can THAT be right???

But I can't even pretend that's the biggest hang-up I've got. (It's possibly #3 on the Top Ten though). My biggest hang-up is to figure out how to be safe in the entire Emotionally Vulnerable spectrum of life. How do you let guards down and trust people and believe they will be for you, and not use your vunerability to crush your life away? How do you get to that level? How do *I*??

Just saying "hello" to the sexually attractive creature right next to me at the gym feels like a leap off the Niagra Falls. How then do I go any further than that? How do I live homosexually? How do I align my life with all the sexual freedom-fighters putting themselves of the front lines?? How do I assume those risks??

In the absence of understanding how, I have actively NOT. By "actively" I mean that my brain has found me ways of compensation on a superpowered level. I can find scapegoats, blockers, reasons and excuses enough to pardon Hitler from Hell, much less keep me out of this battle.

And it all boils down to this; "If I don't feel safe, I don't do it."

Sex is my Last Frontier. I've never done it beause it has never seemed safe. I blog and I blog and I prod into my friends' lives and I tease and I wheedle and I cojole and I flirt and I do everything I can to get this information from people both real and imagined ... and I've barely scratched the surface.

Sex is not quantifiable. Sex is unknowable and unknowing. Sex is irrational and primitive. Sex is a farce. It's a panacea. It's a lifeline. It's humanity's binding force. It's a paradox. It's a lifebringer. It's our species' only manner of survival. It's our species' greatest curse.

I don't know it. I don't know anything about it.

I don't want it.

I won't do it.

I want to do it.


GrizzBabe said...

I wish I had some words of wisdom for you but I only take relationship risks when I feel reasonably safe myself.

Here's hoping you find someone who is gentle and patient with you and is willing to take things at your pace.

Me said...

Seems like that won't be happening during this particular go round. It certainly hasn't happened so far.