Not too long ago, I posted about why I think I have Asperger’s Syndrome. When the post appeared on Facebook, many of my friends there stated that I was a great guy and that I don’t need a label. Of course, I am extremely thankful for all of the kind words those friends had for me and I told them all so. I also agree with them on not needing a label because I wasn’t looking for one.
Very recently a celebrity was recently diagnosed with having Asperger’s Syndrome. Many people suspected that something wasn’t quite right with Susan Boyle to begin with. When she made her big debut on Britain’s Got Talent, both Simon Cowell and Amanda Holden were patronising in their attitudes towards her when she first got on stage. They probably thought that she was going to be terrible. It was only when the nation got to hear that beautiful voice of hers and Simon Cowell saw pound signs flash before his eyes that she was in any way taken seriously.
As a child, it was thought that Susan had brain damage. This was because when she was a child, (she’s the same age as me) very little was known about Asperger’s Syndrome. As a result, she was thought to be stupid and treated as such. Other children often called her “Simple Susie” and made her childhood life a misery. Needless to say, she has the last laugh now but I bet that those more painful childhood memories haven’t completely gone away.
Compare me to Susan Boyle. No, I don’t mean singing, there’s no comparison there as I can’t carry a tune in a bucket. Throughout my younger life and probably a little in my older, I have been branded “weird,” “strange,” “simple,” “retarded,” “stupid,” “doofy” and that’s just the ones I can remember at the moment. Then there were the names directed as my supposed sexuality. “Faggot” was a popular one growing up. When I went to college and university and got good grades, the conclusion drawn was simply that I had book sense but no common sense. What is common sense anyway? It’s what society believes is normal train of thought but as I have stated previously, what seems logical to me doesn’t seem logical to many people. Unfortunately, the more intolerant and ignorant people in the world refuse to see it that way.
Book Reference Alert: Mark has the same problems in “He Was Weird” and I probably magnify it even more than what I have to deal with. His sixth grade teacher is rather impressed and frustrated with Mark. Frustrated because Mark sometimes missed the intended point of the lesson but impressed because he can pick out a small but important morsel of information that even the teacher can’t see. The problem for Mark is that his classmates don’t want to see this but instead want to pick on him for being stupid.
Susan Boyle and I have suffered similar occurrences in our youth. She has had the last laugh by becoming a superstar and if enough of you buy “He Was Weird,” maybe I can achieve the same. (Yes, shameless advertising) Neither of us are looking to be labelled. Asperger’s Syndrome isn’t meant to be a label. For me it would provide answers to many of the things that have gone on in my early life.
I would like to wish all of my readers a very Merry Christmas or if you don’t celebrate it, Happy Holidays. I hope to get out one more post before the New Year.
Next post: TBA