Saturday, November 24, 2012

If I was Young Today

If I was young today, say, I don't know, any age between 6 and 18, I'd long been on drugs, in therapy and a total wreck. Not because of what I did or didn't do, say or didn't say anything, but ll because of my personality.

I would have been diagnosed with abandonment issues, even though I had two supposedly good, loving parents, who decided not to raise me or be involved in my life, but to leave me alone to my own devices throughout my childhood and teenage years.

They taught me, and my siblings, to take care of ourselves without them, from daily hygiene, our rooms, our clothes, our time, whatever. We could get up, make our bed, get ready, make our own breakfast and lunch including washing the dishes and go to school.

We would come home, get something to eat, go play or do our homework, all until dinner, and then after dinner go back to our rooms to play or do homework. We never had to check in with them after school as long as we were home for dinner, after which they did their thing, usually watching TV and we did our thing.

And then repeat every school day and every Saturday we could go anywhere we wanted, just be home for dinner. We kept our rooms clean and organized, our clothes all put away or in the laundry room, to be washed an put on our bed for folding and storing.

Our toys were all put away unless we were using them, and then put away when we were finished. Everything about our life was neat and organized, because we had to keep it that way and we were taught to keep it that way.

Only on holiday and other occasions did my parents do anything for us or with us. They had their work and social lives which didn't include me. And when I failed my first year of college, mostly because I also had to work fulltime while going to college, I was told to leave and not come back.

I would been diagnosed with depression as I had genetic, lifelong Dysthymia and put on anti-depressants. This is a part of my personality, and over the years I've learned simply my brain isn't hardwired normally but predisposed to always see the negative first.

It was also wired to have the rewards center not function normally. I don't get excited or have longer periods of feeling happy for more than a short time, usually minutes, before I focus on what I think and was always taught, to answer the question, "Now what?", or, "What's next?", forgetting the momentary happiness for the reality of life.

I would have been diagnosed with social anxiety disorder as I was extremely shy and stuttered. It didn't mind I was often shorter and smaller than almost all the girls and picked on in by the boys. I never physically grew up until after high school.

I was sent to numerous speech therapist who never helped. I stuttered until my early 20's and have been alway susceptible to it, which is why I speak as I do sometimes, to avoid the letters or words that cause me to stutter. Yes, even now.

I would have been diagnosed as a loner, even though it's alone thats fit the description than lonely. I prefered being alone, and still do. I'm comfortable being alone, but I would have been diagnosed and treated to be more social, the one thing I hated and feared.

And worst of all I would have been diagnosed as physically slow to mature and given hormones to get through puberty, which didn't start until I was 17, earlier. I would have hated it as I hated it later and hated having gone through it now.

I hated being a boy. Not that I wanted to be a girl, well truthfully yes I did and being a boy was the worst thing I could be. I was a failure at it, being short, small, stutterer and shy. I failed at PE, even though I played on the high school practice squads in tennis and played intramural basketball.

Today I would be diagnosed with gender identity issues, not gay they thought boys like me were then, not effeminite, just not masculine. I would be likely put on puberty blocking drugs today, probably the only good thing for me if I was young.

For I would be given the time and freedom to be who I was then and explore what I wanted to be when I was older. But I'm not sure I would have been convincing enough as I didn't meet the criteria as a transgender child beyond being me.

And that's because nothing makes me think or feel I'm happy. And likely the Dysthymia would mask the gender identity issues since I don't express myself, partly out of fear, partly out of hate toward and about myself, and partly because I liked being alone.

All in all my youth would have been a disaster if I was young today. I survived because I wasn't diagnosed. I survived because my parents ignored me and taught me to be independent of people when and where I can and get through the times I can't.

I survived because my personality let me survive without all the therapy, all the drugs, all the intervention "trying to help me be normal" as they would say today. I survived because of who I am than who they thought I should be.

So, be yourself. You'll survive if you don't listen, don't follow their advice, and try as you can, don't take drugs, go into therapy, or change to fit in. Just be yourself and survive as best you can. You will grow up and get the freedom you want.

It just takes time. That's the one thing you can bank on and the one thing you can give yourself. Just survive and time will give you freedom.

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