Thursday, December 30, 2010

Do Aspies Need Healing? Aren't we OK as we are?

A new acquaintance left this comment on my facebook page:

i feel that God made us for who we are jsut sometiems we need alittle more help but we not need to be fixed . some christians treid to pray for a healing which was ncie of them but i dont need a healing God has helped me allready so.. how do you feel about this?

My reply got me stirred up, so I thought I'd post it here:

Hi XXXXXX, sorry I've been offline so long! I don't know if all Aspies need "fixing" but I know that some of us, myself included, have needed God's power in their lives.

I know some Aspies who just needed to learn some social and emotion management skills. I wouldn't tell them they need a "healing" per se.

I know others (where they fall on the Aspie/Autie scale I don't know) who can't manage money or live their lives without extreme anxiety.

I had a counselor tell me last year that because I had made such good progress in adapting to the NT world that she wasn't sure I was on the spectrum after all, that her opinion is that my Aspie-like symptoms were the result of childhood neglect. When your mom brags about leaving you in a corner so she can run her bar, or brags about how she never played with you, I can certainly say neglect played a role.

But the bottom line is there is an extreme anger and anxiety that used to rise up in me at the slightest provocation, and sometimes with NO provocation, and I do believe that it is only the Spirit of God dwelling in me that has diminished the effect of this imbalance.

"But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law." Gal 5:22-23

These are the things that become more prevalent in our lives as we walk in the Spirit. For many Aspies, the fruits of joy, peace and longsuffering are lacking... and in many cases, love (true, gentle, love for one's self and for others), is lacking too.

As we walk longer with the Lord, His Spirit bears more fruit in our lives and that fruit is the above mentioned things like joy and peace. And as Aspies get more joy and peace etc, their behavior becomes more "normal" and so some consider that a healing.

Then there is the healing like when Jesus laid hands on the blind, the maniac, the suffering and healed them. This kind of healing also happens in my church today.

But the bottom line is we all have a right to be happy with ourselves how we are. Many of us (NTs included) find that we increase happiness by changing our behaviors or thinking patters to match society. But if you enjoy your live without such "bending" then who am I to tell you that you need a healing?

The more I thought about this, the more I thought it deserves more attention, and I intend to write more on this. But I'm still trying to make time for my travel-related posts, so it might be awhile.

For Aspies reading this blog: Think about your life. Are you HAPPY??? I was not happy until I changed some of my behaviors to fit in better (and keep a job better). But I also wasn't happy when I tried to change TOO MUCH to be like others. I am who I am. I have simply learned to coexist and try to minimize how often I offend others. But I don't enjoy loud chaotic environments and that will likely never change. So I don't try to be a party girl. I don't try to like movie theaters or wild parties. I'm still me. I just "blend in" better.

If you're happy great! If you're not, think about what kind of life you want and see what it will take to get you there. Whether you need "healing" or not depends heavily on whether or not you are happy with your life and whether you feel the Lord is calling you to change.

For parents reading this blog: Please ask yourself if your child is happy. If s/he is, and s/he has the skills to continue being happy throughout adult hood, kindly consider leaving them alone. They may not need healing or fixing. They may just be different.

Regular readers to my forum, facebook, and blog posts are probably tired of this example but it's the best one I have: years ago I was berated for telling an NT mom that it's no big deal if her son doesn't play football, never goes to prom. She was very upset that his Aspieness would prevent him from having a "normal" senior year. I tried, unsuccessfully, to explain to her that chances are those things weren't important to HIM... only to HER. She should first see if he even cared before stressing out over it. She couldn't see my point. I could see hers all to well, because my least favorite thing to hear my mom saying was, "Why can't you be more NORMAL??" My attempts to do the things she actually WANTED me to do (get a boyfriend, go to parties, skip school like normal kids) all got me into trouble. Why couldn't she just be happy that I was a studious little bookworm who liked to keep to herself? Today I make more money than all of my siblings and while my life isn't perfect I'm pretty happy too.

WOW that's so much more than I intended to say... but it's heartfelt and I hope it blesses someone.