Triggered (Aspergers)

I had a panic attack yesterday. I had used an in-store toilet in a supermarket and kids had shouted in and then turned the lights off.

I was trapped in the dark, I shouted repeatedly and after a few minutes the lights went back on.

Maybe it was teens pranking a friend, but it triggered a panic attack for me.

My breathing went, my head got sore. I was confused and frightened.

I could only make it to the customer service desk to say what happened and I then had to go outside and go sit at the bus stop.

I couldn’t face going to look for things. I had in my head going back into town by bus and then getting what I needed at the train station in Glasgow (another 40 minute trip).

A couple of minutes. A ‘harmless prank’. I was all over the place.

I wanted to scream, I was physically shaking. I was out of my usual.

I had walked earlier to the hospital to see a relative, but I’d mistimed it and ended up sitting in the corridor to wait on the food trays coming out. I handled that okay.

I was patient and quiet and tried distracting myself. I had looked at bus times on my way in thinking I could go and get things I needed later. My head was stressed with the timings but I tried to manage it by thinking that it was okay to wait and I didn’t want to disturb anyone.

I then walked to the big store. I needed things. There wasn’t a direct bus, I checked and it was dry, I knew I could get back by bus, so not a massive issue. Fresh air and a wander about.

Then I realised I needed the toilet, I suffered the inevitable hand dryer noise and then doors banging closed and open and again. A shout of a name and the lights going out.

I panicked and shouted ‘turn the lights on’, it was minutes in the dark. Pitch pitch black. I couldn’t see. I was stuck. I froze and didn’t know what I was doing.

I tried to say what happened when I got out using my ASD awareness card.

It took a long wait outside in the fresh air and the prospect of a long pointless trip by bus and train to make me go back in.

The lights. The noise. So many people. Having to think where things were and going an item at a time. Head full and sore. Needing earplugs and to cancel out the noise.

Getting further. Stopping. Starting.

Feeling stupid and lethargic. Glacial pace of thinking. Anger about the kids and the thought of being derailed from what I had planned to do.

Conscious of my breathing and shaking, trying to steer away and around people.

Item, think, Item, think.

Made it around. Sat down after paying to fix my bag and calm myself.

Days aren’t always straightforward and you can’t foresee triggers or stresses or panic situations.

I can write it after the event, the racing feel in chest, the tightness in head and the whirl of thoughts make ‘at the time’, so difficult.


My speculations on ‘The Last Jedi’

I wasn’t a big Star Wars fan as a kid, I only saw the original trilogy properly as an adult in the nineties with the remastered films when they came out.

But as my kids have grown, I’ve seen the prequel trilogy and The Force Awakens and Rogue One. The kids like Star Wars Rebels and Star Wars: The Clone Wars too.

So, before there’s too many spoilers after the Premiere in Los Angeles yesterday, I have questions…

Who is Rey?

We know she’s a force wielder, we saw that in The Force Awakens. So, she’s gotta be related to a Jedi.

Her story starts on Jakku, a desert world. Like Tatooine, parallels to Skywalker, Luke and Anakin, but, we know there’s a descendant of Anakin with The Force in Ben Solo/Kylo Ren, so can she be Luke’s daughter or a previously unknown child of Leia and Han?

We might be led down that path, but we know Rey waited for someone to return and Maz Kanata had that awkward chat with her about knowing they wouldn’t return. So, we can speculate that it’s not Luke or Leia.

But she’s a Jedi?

So who else can she be related to? Obi Wan Kenobi?

That assumes an affair before the events of A New Hope and around the clone wars period, and there’s the fondness of Obi Wan Kenobi with Dutchess Satine Kryse of the Mandalorians and that could make Korkie Kryse (Satine’s er.. Nephew..) a possibility as Rey’s father. It’s a stretch but The Clone Wars is official Canon, so there’s that.

Other Jedi possibilities are Kanan Jarrus and Ezra Bridget from Rebels. Kanan is close to his Hera Syndulla and is closer in age to Obi Wan and Anakin rather than Luke and with Rebels season four as yet unfinished, we don’t know his fate before the events of A New Hope or whether Kanan was about at the time of films 4,5,6 in the ‘original’ middle trilogy. Ezra would be very roughly a similar age to Luke, but again, we don’t know his fate.

Other speculation in-Canon involves Doctor Aphra from the comic book series, her age could fit as mother to Rey, but who’d be the father? I’m not fond of the theory that Rey is daughter of characters from the Star Wars Battlefront II video game either.

It is wide open, and we can throw in random answers such as, are there midi-cholrians on the loose to just make Rey a Force wielder? Is she a product of Emperor Palpatine? Is she something to do with Snoke?

I like the Obi Wan theories best, but we’ll see.

There’s a great theory out there on her name too.


The question is whether Finn is related to other characters. Mace Windu would make a fantastic Jedi connection, but if Rey is related, then Finn being too is stretching it. The speculation on Lando Calrissian is splendid too. I liked Finn with the light sabre though and I guess we’ll see if there’s anything beyond the first order plucking out infants at birth.


I’ve seen the Kanan Jarrus is Snoke theory and I don’t much like it. Kanan is many things in Star Wars Rebels, but I don’t see him turning to the dark side and I don’t see him going as far as leading a faction of the former empire and creating the first order. It is still possible that Kanan and Ezra (also mentioned as a Snoke possibility) might not survive the end of Star Wars Rebels.

My take is that Snoke is something but not necessarily related to other characters. Quite what I don’t know, but as a being he seems different to the Emperor and Vader and exists differently to them and the empire.

The Last Jedi?

Who? Is it plural?

After Order 66 and the great Jedi purge, we know that at the start of A New Hope, that there weren’t many left, save Obi Wan and Yoda in hiding. The story of Kanan and Ezra in Rebels predates that time and we don’t know their fate, similarly Asohka Tano is presumed dead.

Luke therefore is that Last Jedi, he was trained by Yoda, he is a Jedi Knight. We can fairly say that he trained Kylo Ren, but Kylo rejected his teaching. Rey isn’t a Jedi and Force Wielder isn’t quite the same. They are close to being Jedi but not yet.

If we look beyond them there’s Kanan who was a Padawan and might be a Jedi Knight after the events at the temple on Lothal and has certainly fought and survived Maul and Vader. Ezra is probably a Padawan in very rough terms under Kanan’s tutelage. Asokha is certainly a Padawan that rejected the Jedi Order, but didn’t return. All have been involved against the empire as part of the earlier stages of the rebel alliance.

We do not know if Luke sought out Jedi survivors after the events of Return of the Jedi, even assuming there were a very few left. How Luke framed his new Jedi academy or found Force sensitive trainees is unknown. It leads to a guess that Luke travelled to seek out Jedi or those with Force Powers after the empire fell.

So, there’s not hidden Jedi out there, Luke is probably the Last assuming no link to the Rebels characters.

Where can we go after The Force Awakens?

Well, the First Order and new Rebellion need to face off after the destruction of the Starkiller weapon and the new republic planets.

Rey and Luke. Pupil and Master? Luke returning to Leia and the rebel side? Can it be that simple if Snoke can manipulate Kylo Ren, then are further complications afoot?

We have Poe Dameron and Finn and others. Can there be links and connections to other series in a multiverse way? It’s a question of how the LucasFilm Story Group in charge of the canon and how the film ties into the greater saga and all of its parts.

Early comments sound promising, but can this second film in the sequel trilogy match into the lore, will it be the new ’empire strikes back’ in terms of story and content?

No Help.

There’s no help.

I can’t email anyone for help when stressed or in pain.

I tried today as I was worried about things and upset.

The council’s social work adult team contacted the police and the very person I didn’t want them to contact.

No HELP and three phone calls to the POLICE which is very stressful. 

The threat of officers to my door or to break in.

ALL as council adult social work are incompetent. I was asked stupid questions on my address and date of birth rather than asked what was wrong. I had said I have Aspergers and am rubbish on the phone.

Then they gave me a VERBAL NIGHTMARE. Exactly the last thing I wanted or needed.

Also contacting a person I didn’t want contacted.

STRESS INCREASED as that individual won’t leave it be. I didn’t want that person knowing I wanted help.


But hey ho, I still won’t phone your fucking helpline and you won’t fucking answer my emails. 

So, no help and another thing I can’t trust. 

Nothing to Say?

I’m unsure that I’ve had literally or actually nothing to write about recently, it’s more like I haven’t wanted to. 

I’ve been in the routine in terms of work and the kids. I’ve not really stopped for thought. 

To an extent, I’ve tried to fill my head with other things and have been consuming twitter and Television of an evening.

I’ve been trying to drink healthier stuff, been trying to not take as much coffee.

I don’t know much else that I can say. I’m dealing with the sensory stuff too as best I can.

 I’ve given up on the ‘blues’, my blue lensed glasses as an answer. I need them on occasion, but I’m trying to limit their use. In some places, no glasses or unfocused vision blurs the effect of lighting.

I’ve had a few things that upset me, I can’t be specific. I don’t want to be obsessive over detail.

As usual, I’m not much further forward with things or generally any happier.

I know moods can fluctuate and keeping a pattern and a regular way of doing things in an ordered way can help. 

Chaos and unexpected things do throw me and I’ve suffered a little as  events unfold.

I’ve been trying to eat better and think around food a little more after my trials and tribulations with trousers recently. I’ve maybe lost some weight.

I feel I’ve slept a bit better recently but with some bad nights here and there.

I’ve stuck to keeping away from disability and the two big ‘A’ words. 

I’ve been thinking on Anxiety and Depression as the key factors that weigh on me and trying little things here and there. 

I recognise when I’m less functional and the way the unknown and unexpected hit me.

Sometimes it’s force myself to get through things and other times not so much. Good days are few, but can and do happen.

I think the pattern of functioning days is ok, not good or great. It’s mainly ‘enough’.

I’d probably benefit from some ‘help’, talking through the anxiety and getting the depression lifted a bit. 

CBT won’t work as the first step is ‘talk to friends’, I don’t have anyone I feel that I could do that with.

I don’t want to use my work health helplines as they will report back or ask my work HR.

I don’t know on understand the function of the Autism Resource Centre in Glasgow and I’m not much minded to go near NAS after the time I’ve wasted talking to them.

I could ring a crisis line, I could do the late night mental health helplines although I don’t think that’s me using them for the right purposes.

I feel pushed on Money all the time, I can’t buy things that help. 

My gas and electric near doubled the other month and I can’t phone for help on things like that without having a meltdown, the stress of phoning to get someone that isn’t an English speaker is too much.

Christmas stresses the hell out of me and I really get upset at the money side of it.

I get thinking that I’m lonely, then I realise the circle I’m in. 

I usually want to be left alone, I try a bit and do what I can, I get rejected/don’t fit with people, I then get frustrated and my behaviours put people off me. 

No friends/ family means I’ll probably never date/go out with a woman in my life again.

I’m likely to be alone and single the rest of my life. I don’t like that idea, but for someone to ‘get me’ understand is unlikely.

I’m now 44. It’s called involuntary celibacy and anything that I’ve seen online about it scares the hell out of me and I find that’s a situation I really don’t want to be in. 

But I’ll need to face it, as I can’t give back the interaction that someone might expect. 

I’ve read the things on the Jo Cox commission on lonlieness and the statistics, particularly on life expectancy and along with the autism/aspergers life expectancy stuff, I’m highly susceptible to these issues. 

Not much I can do. I might be smart enough to realise the trouble in front of me, but I don’t have the abilities to improve things and that depression and anxiety mean my limited skills aren’t at their best in terms of communications.

It’s nothing and everything in summary, not much has changed, nothing is really any better. I guess I can drift along so long and then something goes wrong in terms of demands and mood.

In short, some help would be nice but the way people with my condition are treated means it’s unlikely and I’ll just have to struggle on.

Since my first draft of this, things are even worse. I’m now very very stressed and upset, I’m really feeling in a quandary about using Mental Health resources but there’s no other help available. 

My experience with PIP has me reluctant to contact my GP.  There’s no local help I can see that will help me either. 

I don’t want to have another breakdown but it might be only way to have any help or be given ongoing support. It’s a grim thought and I really just want help in staying as I am rather than going into a real crisis situation.

A life. (Ruined) 

Used to enjoy life a little.

Used to be able to afford things.

Used to go to football matches.

Used to drink sometimes.

Used to have friends.

Used to have a balance between work and home.

Used to not fret over money.

Used not to be in substantial debt.

Used to afford clothes for myself.

Used to afford to run a car.

Used to have a semblance of a life.

Not for a long time. 

The Art of Conversation? 

I held from hitting the button to publish this article last week,  as I heard last week of someone attempting suicide. 

A concerning and worrying thing. These are my thoughts on me really, but there may be some help for others. 

Article below:-

It’s suicide prevention week. There’s a few good documents out there. Saw one from Scottish NHS called ‘The Art of Conversation’.

It’s everything that you need if you worry about someone else and yes it’s a difficult question to approach.

Mainly, it’s just the importance of talking. ‘Are you okay’ goes a long way.

My current worry is in terms of mood/self esteem, it’s probably progress that I’m even thinking about this or being worried about it.

I’ve been reading about ‘Cyclothymic Disorder’, it’s apparently a milder version of Bipolar and can affect people with my diagnosis.

As name suggests, it goes in cycles. I suppose that I get the cycles of down, but the cycles of up? 

I’m not sure that I do anything in a manic way and I’m not sure I experience the high ‘highs’, that way. 

It’s more like plateaus and slides, the overall effect being a kind of faster slide than the slower stepped recovery phase and with smaller slides within that as well.

I saw an article recently that was titled ‘The Lonely, Isolated, Unwanted, Mocked and Misunderstood.’ I think the title alone sums up some days for me.

I didn’t read it. The title put me off. (Sometimes it’s not good to face everything)

I do experience all of those in different ways each day and I could write at length on each descriptor.

I think for now, the main issues in my mental health are Anxiety and Depression and that’s pretty much it.

I don’t think there’s a cyclical element to it, it’s not a pattern and I’m generally pushing myself onward each day past sensory issues and the anxiety triggers that come with them. 

If I’m not stressed and worried then my mood isn’t as low, simple as that, if I am able to remove issues,  I function a bit better. Add issues and I don’t.

I’m not sure there’s Day to Day enjoyment and highs as per the manic stuff. I think there’s comfort and security in some things and I take what I can, when I can.

I think it is lonely, it is at times an isolated feeling and I do feel misunderstood, but a great deal of that is through miscommunication and my inabilities to express when things are wrong or difficult.

My limits, therefore limit my recovery and limit my progress. 

I won’t just pop up suddenly feeling better. I’m conscious of my weight, aware of my appearance and knowing my age, lifestyle and resources.

Aware or too aware? Now that’s where the pop-psychology turns back on itself. 

Being aware of my effect on people in turn affects my behaviour towards them. I have withdrawn myself quite a bit in recent years and it’s defensive. I don’t engage much if I can otherwise help it. 

So to a degree, my awareness of myself and my moods and issues isn’t likely to be a help. It’s also unlikely to predict a meltdown situation or the factors that could build up to one.

Suicide isn’t high in my thoughts. 

I’m aware of the dangers, and know that there’s added risk and possibility having the condition that I have and that I can ‘mask’ quite a lot of the condition and mask quite a lot of frustration but that comes out in the end by a rant or a meltdown. 

Verbal communication or a chat won’t always work for me, sometimes it helps, but I can stumble over words and what I’m trying to get across at that time.

Even a patient, engaged, interested listener can get frustrated with me.

Sometimes things are internalised as may be necessary, I have some filters on some things

But although I might be down and low, I’m usually not at the mindset that dying would solve anything. I certainly could use a rest at times, I could use less pressure on me in a few ways but I do keep going.

Someone that may be thinking suicidally may have kept going a long time, may be subject to the same pressures, so it’s always worthwhile reading the materials on it and knowing that it’s a real prospect for some people. 

It’s an extreme decision but it gives the person control back over what they felt they had lost control of and whilst it’s understandable, it’s a real live issue, not to be taken lightly.

Triggers can be minute, but it’s the regaining of some control when it seemed all was lost. Not good but understandable.

^ that’s what I had wrote.

I’d add that the wider effect of suicide is upon who you leave behind and the grief process around death can be bad enough without adding an extra layer of thinking for them to try and negotiate.

As I’ve said it’s easy enough to avoid people and internalise things, but doing so for a prolonged period is a sign that you need help. Coping isn’t always enough and that small question about ‘how are you’ can be absolutely vital.

Mr Jones’ Afternoon off.

Inspired by hearing Counting Crowes ‘Mr Jones & Me’ in Five Guys after getting a drenching, here’s my Friday afternoon off.

First Five Guys for Lunch and filling. Cheeseburger with just mayo and mustard. 

I’m pretty straightforward on taste and the mayo/cheese beef/mustard does the job. 

The burgers are tremendous with the double beef patty and heaps of fries. Sets me up for later.

Next Central Station low level for 1346 to Larkhall and three car unit 320317 was still with green SPT seats on inside.  

Journey was two stops away to Bridgeton. Much of journey in tunnel and sadly not a stop at Glasgow Green 😦

Pretty much site of station and exactly at where I was headed.

1405 after a walk and I’m in the West Brewery in the Templeton Building near Glasgow Green

4 beers in a flyte for £5.20

Munich Red 4.9%

GPA – German Pale Ale 5.2%

Wild West 4.9%

Feierabend Pilsner 4.6%

A more traditional bar than Drygate and food for it.

The downpour at 1300 put paid to my thoughts of an afternoon in beer garden. 

Munich Red was pick of the first four for me.

This Beauty is Heidi-Weisse. 

The West Black was a decent Stout

I also had the Red in a pint, as I really enjoyed the sampler.

I walked backed into Glasgow City Centre at about 1700.

Passed the Doulton Fountain on Way.

And tried an ale in brewdog’ bar. 

Later went to a newer German beer house.

Both very drinkable.

I made my way home and caught 2036 train, so I had more than a few hours off from worrying and being stressed. It was nice.