I’m not going to be internet jolly and hide my reality. It’s been a tough week. Several times this week I’ve experienced autistic shutdown.
It’s been a tough few months. Some sad things happened which I have talked about as much as I need to. I am failing to reach some goals I’d like to achieve. I’m feeling down. Unproductive, and clinging onto the hope that I will get it together soon!
So I continue on my quest to find my pieces, put them back together and move on with my life. In the meantime I did manage to film this week. With my autistic friend Ros who has made many videos with me previously.
We made this video about autistic shutdowns. Using our own personal experiences we talk about how the feel, why they happen and how to embrace the need to shut down.
I made this video about the other side of the shutdown coin, the meltdown.
I wrote this post about how to help an autistic person in meltdown.
The National Autistic Society have this information about meltdowns.
A great video Ella. It has helped me to understand my daughter’s shutdowns as she finds it difficult to verbalise how she feels. Her worst shutdowns can last days. Now I know what they are I can recognise her symptoms before they happen and this has helped her to recognise her triggers and manage them. At the worst it is like she is in a catatonic state, she takes to bed and only emerges to go to the bathroom. She can’t speak and lies motionless. She can be like that for 48 hours. Then it is like her brain is slowly rebooting and it can take a further 5 days before she feels more like herself. Watching her go through these was terrifying before her diagnosis, trying to explain what she was experiencing was difficult. The doctor presumed she was depressed, yet once she came round she was back to her ‘normal’. 18 months post diagnosis she has only had a couple of major shutdowns which had identifiable triggers. She still has what we call system updates or mini shutdowns, but these are shorter. I hope you recover from your shutdown soon, don’t be hard on yourself and take time for you.
Thank you Ruth, I’m so glad to hear that your daughter is doing better thanks to diagnosis.
This video spoke to me so much. Thank you!
I am 80 years old and kept nodding my head up and down, up and down as I watched the both of you. Our youngest son has Aspberger’s. I can identify with some of what both of you share and now understand that autism runs in families to one degree or another. Recently my beloved husband and father of our sons died siddenly of a heart attack. Since then a whole bunch of stuff has gone on with my sibs and my husband’s sibs. What you share so openly is a huge help to me. I am now living with our son Andy who cannot put words together most of the time. He explains it that he has anxiety talking, and I go through all this guilt about not understanding this when he was a small boy. Keep up the work you are doing. I know that I spent huge amounts of effort when Andy was young and couldn’t communicate. I got help for him then, and now that we live together, I am learning not to “pounce on him” to tell him something I think he should hear, but to wait for a time when he can hear. Andy is gifted when it comes to computers. Both of you are gifted in how you can present what it is you go through. Keep up the good work.
Thank you Grace, your son is lucky to have such a caring Mum.
Interesting as always. Myself and my son are the opposite of Ros when in a large social group. We just want to disappear. I have developed various coping strategies over the years but my son is struggling to cope. Any help or advice on that sort of thing would be appreciated. Thank you for all your videos, they are a great help to us both.