Paul Isaacs' Blog

Autism from the inside


Is Bullying “Normal”?

Here is an interesting observation, many people who bullied me at school and during my time in education I have heard have always said they “observed” the acts never instigated implying overtly they were witness’ not people to take part in the act.

Let’s be frank you did on a daily basis commenting on my appearance.

  1. How I talked
  2. How I walked
  3. My weight
  4. My lack of friends
  5. My lack of intelligence
  6. My emotions
  7. My parents, my grandparents
  8. My social status.

This would happen at class, during breaks/lunchtime, waiting for transport home/during transport and at the place were I live from the ages of 5 to 16 years old.

This also included parents and teachers.

However just because I have made conscious and dedicated effort to see and take the good out of your actions, to not let them define me, to not be bitter or hold on to reductive actions of revenge or futile bitterness of the past that doesn’t not mean your acts were correct.

I can be objective and say it was your homelife, your sense of unfulfilment socially and/or academically, clashing of personality, the chemical imbalances that come with teenagehood, the peer pressure etc.

To which is true, however in terms of projection and hurt you flung on me was vile, cruel and cowardly you made me feel worthless and at multiple times I wanted to not live.

Bullying isn’t a “normal” part of growing up, it isn’t a right of passage, it isn’t a phase and the word itself trivialises the actions which is, psychological and/or physical abuse and projected trauma onto another human being.

I thank you for bestowing these actions on me because you gave me a framework how not to treat people, I understand a lot of you have families and children.

I hope you have matured and changed as you have grown and I sincerely wish your young one’s do not go through what I went through.

I refuse to be a victim of the past, for I do not want it to live in my future.

Paul Isaacs 2020


In The Last Ten Years

Looking Back

The last ten years have been very intersting in 2009 I was recently out of the Mental Health Services with two personality disorders, auditory hallucinations and psychosis, I was self harming and attempted suicide.

Early Infancy

By clinical observations I was serverely autistic, I was profoundly meaning deaf, meaning blind, body disconnected, oral apraxic and didn’t gain functional speech till later in infancy. I was and am thankful to my parents who had no means of any interventions (in the late 80s many were dated).

In 2010 I was diagnosed with autism and OCD and my speaking career started off in which I went freelance in 2015.

“Standards of Success”

By “non-autistic” standards I “made it” in many ways I suppose. I was considered “retarded” by the village I lived in and was targeted and bullied by the children and adults till my mid-teens.

Education

I was targeted and bullied at school from primary to secondary when I finally left in 2002 (with an isolated incident of sexual abuse) in the latter.

I went on to do an ICT coursecfor a year and had the greatest experience of my life from and educational perspective it proved I could be educated.

Bullying and Employment

The bullying in employment started in 2002/3 so multiple jobs were lost and gained.

I was thankful to the autism base in Chinnor in around 2008/9 for supporting me as well as the start of my speaking career in 2010. Over that period of time I wrote and authored 5 books.

The bullying in employment stopped in 2015 when I went freelance and started working for My World.

This is longest time in employment that I have been safe, comfortable and seen as a part of the team.

I Am A Person-First

People wonder why I use “person-first language” this is why because I do not want to be defined by a “label”. I do not like serperatist “them and us, us and them” rhetoric we (as beings) are all a part of the human race

From 2013 onwards to now I am pleased to have met some of the most wonderful and friendly people in both my personal and professional life.

Love and Life

I lost my Gramp in March 2017 due to metatastic prostate cancer, one of my dearest friends and mentors Polly (Donna Williams) in April that year also to metatastic breast cancer and my Nan in December 2019 due to pneumonia. I shall always cherish my fondest memories of them.

I almost lost my Dad in 2011 due to chronic lymphocytic leukemia and then meningitis in 2018 as well as my Mum in May 2019 due to a complex thrombotic disease.

Creative Mindsets

I have had great fun dabbling in art, poetry and what I call “insta-modelling” in which to my surprise and support from my friends up north has been rather enjoyable!

I have been interested in androgyny for many years prior and have been told I look as such.

One of things I can do well is pluck my eyebrows which I consider an achievement as much as anything else! šŸ˜‰

Conclusion

So look beyond what is here, look beyond what is heard, what is seen, what is touched and sense people because every cherished little person is special and of equal valor and humility in this world.

Paul Isaacs 2020


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What Are “You”?

I often teeter on the wonderance of what it means to be a brain with a nervous system?

Why I am here? Why I am attuned and attached to an aging body? Why do I think, act, behave and react the way I do?

People are sometimes scared of their own minds and thought processes seeing them as a darkly moulded appendage that is seperate from one’s self an inner coil of contradictory truths.

As I know at this point I couldn’t be more happier being my own best friend, ally and comfort in times of earthly solace to do the right things. I hold in to truths even metaphorical ones and friends of friends a like flow into our pathly existences once again.

Paul Isaacs 2019


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Autism – The Crossover from “Sensing” to “Meaning”

Sensing vs Interpretation 2918 image

Note this is from a personal perspective.

Overview

Talking yesterday to friend about speech and language I thought it was interesting to see progression the inner feelings of someone who has gone through significant challenges in receptive and expressive language

A Whirlwind

I can remember a whole host of disconnected emotions that came flooding towards my person when speech slowly developed in terms of expression, a whirl wind of patterns, phonics and placements in my collective unglued memory and figured out by the age of eight a system of external placement, phonic placement and movement sequences that helped me connect with the outer world around me.

The System of System & Interpretation

However what was challenging from both emotional and integration point of view was taking a step away from the system of ā€œsensingā€ (Donna Wiliiams 1998) a state of pre-consciousness, patterns, thematics and ā€œfeelingsā€ that answered and questioned, that supplied and didnā€™t demand, that sang but didnā€™t shout, that gave and took in relevance of the moment it was captured. A place which ā€œbeingā€ was the name of the game and ā€œstoring informationā€ was redundant and futile.

It was a world in which in my own way I had found connects through external sensory modulation as explained so switching my ā€œsystemsā€ was much a painful and frustrating experience as I can ever remember my connected chatter annoyed and scared me and the connected words would then bring upon the attention of connected response to which I was not readily to respond.

So was it like losing a friend? Well at that point yes I was making subtle yet significant transition into the world of interpretation, cladding, hierarchy and applied meaning for someone who was profoundly meaning deaf and meaning blind to those concepts.

It certainly makes sense why I wanted to ā€œgo backā€ into a world of ā€œsensingā€ it was in reflection both a prison and sanctuary, solitude and disarray and home and wilderness all at once.

Conclusion

We (human beings) all come from the system of ā€œsensingā€ however my personal experience is being ā€œthereā€ for a longer allotted period and many ways I am still there with reflective gaining and personal developmental progressions that have come with it.

Paul Isaacs 2018


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What Is “Life”?

Peering through life I often wonder about it “what is it all about?” this may seem like a hopeless and uncomfortable question to ponder. We are not here for eternity, however memories and echoes of the past wonder and echo around us.

Things happen that change our perspective on life as an ongoing experience. People go on seemingly timeless changes in identity, health (mental or otherwise), perceptions, directions, fortunes (philosophical or otherwise too) maybe that is it in that is changeable, not tiresome, fluid, not stagnant, fruitful and not grey.

Balance is such a currency that one cannot buy but learn either through example or trial and error and that has been the most valuable to me.

Paul Isaacs 2018


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Wretches & Jabberers DVD – A Journey Into Autism

A moving and delightful movie and about two men on the autism spectrum who are both “functionally non-verbal” finding their voices through facilitated and typed communication. Debunking the myths that people who cannot speak with their mouths are “retarded” or “intellectually disabled”.

Tracy and Larry are best of friends and their passion for advocacy leads them to meeting others around the globe who are also yearning and fondly sharing their experiences and voices with a wider audience, showing great empathy, compassion, introspection and deepness through the words that they write to a wider audience. Bringing people into their world and inviting others to think, reflect and reevaluate what “autism” and “intelligence” even look like. Showing great feats of creativity.

There is warmth, humour, sadness and hope sometimes all at once when listening the candid words and hopefully the viewer will come out of this experience with greater level of acceptance and make less assumptions about what is going on on the “inside”. Please all presume competence.

I highly recommend this DVD.

Paul Isaacs 2017


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Think For A Moment? Could Life Be More Balanced?

What is life? But a matter of objective? subjective? Or maybe something more deeper? I wonder is life really meant to be complex? Or is that the way in which people perceive and react to one another that makes it so? Maybe barriers have blinded our minds to make quick thoughts about islands of people we live amongst? People don’t know people but are obliged to talk about them with deep motives, follow your heart not what you see on news or read in the newspaper.

Humans don’t need to be cynical, edged with tyranny. Yes we too profoundly hold dear idols in both statue and human form who confirm and are to do with such things look back in history, look to the now for is woven the future.

Paul Isaacs 2016


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The Striving To Be Balanced

What is like to just “be”?Ā 

The eagerness to be loved, adorned and “famous” is to be in a crippling lament for things so trivial that is but a speck in eternity of what is in the moment of your own universe, the truth is you are not the universe you are apart of, not the centre, you are neither bindless nor to binded, fragile yet made of stone, wings neither clipped, nor straddled to the sky – to seek peace is to be at one with yourself and find yourself with others – the selfless task of giving is more that just a fruitful act but something that comes from a place much deeper.

Paul Isaacs 2016


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Reflections for the New Year and Life

IMAG0272I hope all have a grateful New Year and are ready to spread their wings into different ventures and pathways, you may have to go down a different pathĀ and/or continue down the same one until the cross-roads of life unfold you may have do things that are uncomfortable but necessary you may need to do things that continue to give you joy and stability – burning bridges with the philosophy that isn’t shallow but needed, contextual and logical.

Keeping and valuing good friends and loved ones whom value you as you do them with the veneer less intentions and faces with what you see is what you get none too one-sided or over invested but just balanced – this is hopefully something that is learned to me in the coming year to strive to me more balanced, have good emotional management, to not be a doormat or be used by untrustworthy agendas and shallow people he thing more about you can do for them a less about the person you are, to value real friend and companionship this will not just be for 2016 but something that I can work on in the ages.

Paul Isaacs 2016


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Healthy Boundaries, Healthy Relationships, Empathy And Not Treating Others As “Objects”

SAM_0739The Importance Of Healthy BoundariesĀ 

Healthy boundaries are so important for all types of relationships when boundaries are pointed out is good for both parties if autonomy is taken away (for what ever reason) can have negative affect on someone’s self-worth and mental health.

In context of people who have negative personality extremes such as

or other associated personality disorders.

Being Balanced & My Journey With Borderline PD

A journey to building up a sense of “self” (because of developmental and personality types/traits) has been very important to me as I am nearing 30 I kind of know what sort of energy is “balanced” with regards to people and friends and when people are crossing boundaries and learning when I am doing the same.

Autism & Borderline Personality DisorderĀ 

This is a link to my website on how this affected me in the late 2000’s and how it can make you feel this is why a value positive and constructive direction not giving too much but at the same time not receiving too much either. This was a tough time in my life but I am glad I go through it a learned a lot from it also. šŸ™‚

Workplace 2007 & Mental Breakdown

I felt worthless at this point due to persistent difficulties in the workplace It was my first place of employment Ā so I took it out on myself. There seems to by other types of Borderline PD which includes social manipulation, lying and game playing. None I which I did nor doĀ 

What happened to me was an implosion and psychotic breakdownĀ due to environmental stress and workplace bullying.

Autism & Personality Disorders – Coexistence?Ā 

Autism is part of someone’s developmental trajectory- it is diverse and unique in it’s presentations but all human beings also have unique personality traits and types which develop as well.

In the context of autism personality traits/types and styles are just as relevant and if you take my examples above you can see a “normal” personalty type pushed into the “disordered”Ā extreme. On top of that my autism comes into play too in terms of the processing information, language, visuals, “self” and “other” and all the other aspects of my “fruit salad”.

Kindness – I like to help others I but there has be personal boundaries. which is thinking of the person in question good intentions come from the right place with me but what I have learned is about volume and negative intensity. I think about other peoples feelings a lot.

Mercurial Personality TypeĀ  – This is the “Normal/Balanced” version of Borderline PD

  1. Decency; Earnestness; Thriftiness.
  2. Mercy, Forgiveness; Modesty, Naturalness.
  3. Hope, Cheerfulness, Joyfulness, Sociability.
  4. Sincerity, Straightforwardness; Honesty, Fairness.
  5. Tolerance, Liberalism, Open-mindedness.
  6. Generosity, Liberality; Courtesy, Graciousness, Equitableness; Altruism, Kindness; Affability, Friendliness.
  7. Idealism.
  8. Energy, Enthusiasm.
  9. Artistry, Inquisitiveness; Boldness, Spontaneity; Creativity, Humorousness.

Family 2003 1Failure is “Normal” and RelativeĀ 

I am glad my parents gave me the chance to have autonomy, freedom, understand “failure” and criticism are normal parts of being human and that the goal of being apart of not the centre ofĀ is Ā a good thing and valuing other peoples feelings and autonomy. The importance of being kind and sincere with depth and integrity I know I got from my parents.

I know where I stand with my parents and certainly my friends too. I can’t imagine how a child could be treated in such destructive way that would effect future development in teenage and adulthood that is scary.

Paul Isaacs 2015