Asperger’s and homelessness

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Recently, I’ve learned and have accepted that until I feel safe…

(not at-risk of being homeless; being able to pay my own bills; being able to eat regularly)

it will be more difficult to do and to learn the things that will lead into independent living.

That’s definitely true for people who have Asperger’s Syndrome / are on the autism spectrum.

That’s also, to an extent, true for neuro-typicals (people who aren’t on the autism spectrum), too.

Many homeless individuals would fare better, if they were taken out of what’s called DEFENSE MODE. 

I’m not faulting people who have never experienced homelessness. Yay, for you! You’re able to hold a job, manage your money (well enough, apparently), and pay your bills.

But… until you’ve been homeless (even worse, street-homeless), you may not be aware of the challenges that are faced.

Basic self-care, especially if you’re on the high-functioning end of the autism spectrum, can be very difficult – when you’re in a homeless shelter or on the streets.

When you’re autistic (but high-functioning enough that people forget that you’re also low-functioning) and homeless, “simply” asking a homeless-shelter’s employee for your today’s-bath-towel and soap can be challenging.

When you get people (autistic or not) out of defense mode, they’re more able to learn more advanced social skills, job / interview skills, and organization skills.

I think this blog post kind of sucks, but my point is…

if you want the homeless community (autistic or not) to be more able to learn and do what it takes to become productive citizens, please don’t trap them into a situation that is difficult to rise out of.

Homeless shelters / organizations: “Here’s your bath towel, soap, and toothbrush. We expect you to have a job, hold that job, manage your own money, and find adequate housing, in the next 2 weeks.”

Some add, “…also, attend all of your mental health appointments, go to counseling, and follow up with other assistance.”

I think I’m mostly coming from an Aspie-point-of-view of homelessness, but … REALLY??! 

If I were able to do all of that, I wouldn’t be homeless!!!

I know that this blog post is a mess. My brain is currently a mess.

 

About My Mom, Janet

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After grieving for Lady Bug (my almost-6-year-old daughter), this morning, I’ve been thinking a lot about my mom. #Adoption #Birthmother #ReadBlogDescriptions #NewPeople

I’ve spoken to her, via Facebook, in the last few months.

We’re alike in that we’ve struggled to hold things together: jobs, relationships, …things that many people take for granted.

I will not speak to things that I don’t know the details of, but I can say with certainty that her childhood was tough (to say the least) and that her life has been difficult.

I’m Stephanie, my mother’s second-born child. I have pushed my mother away, over and over. I have screamed at my mother, for what she didn’t do, to rescue me from things that emotionally scarred me. She didn’t inflict this pain, but she didn’t know how to stop it from happening.

I no longer blame her for this. 

I’m not able to help her, but I’ve become protective of her – as I’ve emotionally matured (a little).

My mom is a Christian. I know that she’ll ask you for prayers, as she struggles through these years of her life that should be calm(er).

to use more formal language,

I beseech you,

if you are able to find her a job at which she would have an understanding boss, days off, and enough pay to cover her bills, please let her know.

“For even when we were with you, we gave you this rule: ‘The one who is unwilling to work shall not eat.'” – 2 Thessalonians 3:10

My mom has attempted to hold jobs, for as long as I’ve observed her. I do not see will power as the problem.

I am not asking for you to hand things to my mother. I am asking for you to think, within her South-West Texas region, whether you know of stable, compassionate employment for her.

“Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ.” – Galatians 6:2

A blog post by a fellow-WordPress(er) ~ Boundaries: The Difference Between Loads and Burdens

P.S.

I will continue to do what I can, when I can, to help her with the steps that may be required to stabilize her life.

Lady Bug Annv

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Yesterday was Lady Bug’s adoption anniversary – of 3 years. Strange, strange. Yesterday morning, I emotionally struggled for about half an hour. I didn’t feel the need to cry, but if I had needed to, I would have allowed myself to.

I browsed pictures of Lady Bug and watched a few old videos of her.

I miss you, little girl. You’re loved. You’re awesome.

You, too – Picklette, Sesame, and Jewel!

Lady Bug – almost 6 years old.

Picklette – 3 years old.

Sesame – 2 years old.

Jewel – 1 year old.

*pinches self

 

 

Happy Thanksgiving

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It’s Thanksgiving Day.

I’m thinking about my babies.

Thanksgiving doesn’t make me think of Christopher Columbus and America’s “discovery”.

Thanksgiving makes me think of family, food, and football.

I’m thankful for my kids’ family. I’m thankful that my roommates are going to knock on my door with a plate of food. I’m thankful that I don’t have to watch football.

I hope my babies have a good day and good food.

 

Birth Mother, Stephanie

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How cool! WordPress has informed me that this is my 100th BonaFideBirthMother blog post!!!

It’s not about letting-go of my babies.

It’s about ripping away the idea that my sole-identity is of being my babies’ birth mother.

I am also Stephanie.

2015

2015

2008

2008

Without absconding from my non-custodial duties, life needs to go on.

Unlike a very former friend suggested that I do, I will never “move on” from my babies.

They’re my babies. Forever.

I think it’s interesting that the last place I ever saw my Birth Mother necklace (a gift from my kids’ parents) was at that former friend’s home. It “disappeared”. I’ve not wanted to admit that. I hate that I laid it down and gave someone (who didn’t think I should “think about my children so much”) the chance to steal it from me. Don’t believe she stole it? She’s also the “friend” who broke (into pieces) a $20 DVD (that belonged to me), because she didn’t approve of the content.

I have 9.5 years left of my 30s. That sounds like so much, but I’ve heard that it goes by quickly. I don’t want to spend 10 years wallowing in my grief. What a waste! I think my children would be more proud of me, if I live a fuller life than that.

Here’s to my babies being proud of me.

Love,

Birth Mother,

Stephanie.

Easy-Peasy, Because I Love My Babies

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“That’s very brave and strong of you.” – people, when I’ve explained that (3 of my) children were adopted.

Until very recently, I couldn’t figure out why this sentence annoyed me.

After figuring it out, I doubt that I’ll ever be bothered by that sentence again.

I don’t feel “brave and strong”, after choosing adoption for my children. Those decisions were probably the easiest decisions I’ve ever made.

The aspect of being a birth mother that requires bravery and strength, in my opinion, is living my life without my children being with me.

  • “I want my children to have the kind of childhood that I’m not able to provide to them.” – easy, because I love my children
  • “I am going to live my life without my children, waiting years to meet the big-people that they’ve become.” – not easy, because I love my children (and would love to be apart of their day to day lives)

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I won’t give up

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read below

This morning, at work, I wanted some new music to listen to. I YouTubed and eventually found this song. I listened to the music, at first, but then after a couple of times of hearing the song… I finally heard the lyrics. And wow, it’s a beautiful, inspirational song (for me).

The lyrics that are in bold are to my kids – from me. The lyrics that are underlined seem like they’re singing to me / about me. When you hear the song, you may think of different things. This is what the song means to me.

When I look into your eyes
It’s like watching the night sky
Or a beautiful sunrise
Well, there’s so much they hold
 And just like them old stars
I see that you’ve come so far
To be right where you are
How old is your soul?
Well, I won’t give up on us
Even if the skies get rough
I’m giving you all my love
I’m still looking up
And when you’re needing your space
To do some navigating
I’ll be here patiently waiting
To see what you find
‘Cause even the stars they burn
Some even fall to the earth
We’ve got a lot to learn
God knows we’re worth it
No, I won’t give upI don’t wanna be someone who walks away so easily
I’m here to stay and make the difference that I can make
Our differences they do a lot to teach us how to use
The tools and gifts we got, yeah, we got a lot at stake
And in the end, you’re still my friend at least we did intend
For us to work we didn’t break, we didn’t burn
We had to learn how to bend without the world caving in
I had to learn what I’ve got, and what I’m not, and who I amI won’t give up on us
Even if the skies get rough
I’m giving you all my love
I’m still looking up, I’m still looking up.

Well, I won’t give up on us (no I’m not giving up)
God knows I’m tough enough (I am tough, I am loved)
We’ve got a lot to learn (we’re alive, we are loved)
God knows we’re worth it (and we’re worth it)

I won’t give up on us
Even if the skies get rough
I’m giving you all my love
I’m still looking up