Updates, University, and Unicorns.

Hey my beautiful readers,

I just wanted to give you an update as to why I haven’t really been present on here for the past few days. I’m currently sitting in a strange old building, surrounded by cats, and waiting for my Chinese takeaway to arrive. My boyfriend and I are looking after his dad’s hotel at the moment so we’ve been pretty busy! Between crawling through windows when guest lock in all of their sets of keys, to feeding all of Kyle’s dad’s horses and cats, we’ve barely sat down!

I want to give a massive thank you to everyone who commented on my post about Kyle not getting into University, we were both amazed at all the support we got. You’re all wonderful! Kyle is now planning on taking a gap year and reapplying for University next year, and at least this allows him to pass his driving test before he goes to University.

Most of you will know by now I’m also going to University this year, and I’m actually starting this Sunday! I’ll be moving from my tiny little town in the countryside to the big city of London, and I am terrified! I’ve already spoken to the people I’ll be living with and they seem awesome! Plus, they’re so understanding about my social anxiety which I am so relieved about. I just wanted to warn you all that my posting may become less frequent when I start University, but I promise I’ll never forget about you!

Thank you so much for reading, and as always if you want to get in touch please email me!

P.S: You may be wondering why I used the word Unicorn in my title. To be honest, it’s mostly because it sounds good, but it’s also because my boyfriend and I were playing charades and I had to pretend to be a unicorn. Because we’re sophisticated adults like that! Oh dear, I’m never going to survive at Uni!

Dear 12 year old me,

Dear 12 year old me,

I am writing this letter to inform you that things will get better. Those angry scars across your thigh will fade, and your wrists will stop being a canvas for your pain. I promise. I know things are Goddamn awful for you, and I’m so, so sorry. You haven’t done anything wrong, I promise.

I know the Bad Man made you scared, but please don’t believe a word he says. You are beautiful. You are strong. You can keep fighting. This is the year he goes away. I know that seems impossible but it’s true, he will never lay a finger on you again. So keep going. Cry into your pillow, it doesn’t make you weak. Get out of bed, I know it’s the hardest task of the day, but you can do it. Talk to your parents, please, you’re scaring them.

In the future you’ll ace your exams (A*’s in Biology, Chemistry, and Physics!) and you’ll go to an amazing college. There will be a boy in the hallway, the one looking dorky and cute, the one smiling at you. Go talk to him. Or just do what I did and get really nervous and make a stupid joke…then run away awkwardly. But it’s okay, because your paths will cross again! You’ll go on a school trip, where you’re sat in a “train crash” so the emergency services can practice rescuing you. You’ll be covered in fake blood, wearing hospital scrubs, surrounded by smoke, and screaming people… and he’ll be sitting next to you making even stupider jokes and being just as awkward as you are.

This boy will make you realise how amazing you truly are. He’ll kiss your scars. He’ll hold you all night to keep the nightmares away. But most of all, he’ll be there for you. He knows your past, he’s intertwined in your present, and you’ll plan your future together.

Your future is filled with love, and hope, and opportunities. So please put the razor down, untie the rope, and look around you because the World is so beautiful. Just like you.

Lots of love,

Amy

(Written for Teens Tell Their Story)

Rant #1 – Universities

I mentioned in my last post that I wanted to do a series where I rant about things, because my blog is much too positive as it is! Plus, who doesn’t love a good whine!

So, my first thing I’m going to moan about is the Universities in England. Now I was lucky and managed to get into University without any trouble. My boyfriend, on the other hand, did not. The school system is designed to make him fail! He’s dyslexic and autistic, yet he’s expected to get a grade C in English before any University will accept him. He has taken this English exam 3 times, and is taking it again, tomorrow. Each time he has been one or two marks off. How is this fair?

In England there’s a thing called “Clearing” where if Universities have spaces left you can apply for them, my boyfriend has tried this and each of them have said they can’t make a decision until he passes this exam. We’re stuck in a limbo. He gets more and more stressed about the exam each time, and this is it. Tomorrow is his last chance.

So Universities, if you’re reading this… Do something! I understand that having a good level of English helps you to do well in University, but come on, if you have places available and students who want to get in, what’s the problem?! My boyfriend got better college grades than we were expecting (equivalent to 3 A’s at A-level) and a B in Maths and you still can’t make an exception?! Ughhh!

Okay, I’m done. Have any of you had similar problems? Or have you had problems with your school? As ever, thanks for reading and please feel free to get in touch 🙂

I’m back from my holiday!

I’m home! I have been without internet for days and I was starting to get withdrawal symptoms! My boyfriend and I have just got home from our holiday, and I just wanted to say thank you for all the lovely comments and emails wishing us a happy holiday. It was brilliant! I had no work, no responsibility, just tons of food, it was perfect.

We went to a theme park where I discovered my boyfriend is fearless and I’m such a coward! And we spent approximately 48 hours in the arcades on the 2p machines where I spent a week’s worth of wages, but it was totally worth it 🙂 Do they have 2p machines in other countries? If not, you guys are missing out! Basically, they’re machines where you put 2p’s (money) into the machine, it falls down and falls into a pit of other 2p’s, then the machine pushes the money along and the toys that are on top of the money end up falling down. I explained that so badly, but that’s the best I can do. So I basically spent £30 to win a bunch of keyrings, stationary, and other random junk I will never use. But it was fun 🙂 I also may have unknowingly flirted with a guy who works there because whilst I was talking to him he winked at me and handed me a tub of free stuff (don’t tell Kyle :P)

2p Machines!!

Three days without internet let me do a lot of thinking, and I realised I complain a lot!! So I’m thinking about doing a series on here just ranting about things. Don’t worry, they won’t be too serious, but I think it’ll be very therapeutic (especially whilst I’m at University) so keep a look out for that 🙂

I’m going on holiday!

Finally! I am taking a (well deserved) break from everything! For four days I will have no work, no tutoring, no housework, no annoying brother, and no responsibilities and I couldn’t be happier. Okay, we’re not going to anywhere exotic, we’re not even going out of the country, but my boyfriend and I are going to visit his family in Essex and I’m so excited! However, I won’t be able to get much internet access to reply to any of you but please, still get in touch if you need to and I’ll reply as soon as I can. I’ve got a ton of blog awards to do so I’ll schedule a few of those whilst I’m gone.

I’ll be scheduling this post for Sunday morning, so whilst you’re reading this I’ll probably be driving up to Essex 🙂

As always, thanks for reading!

Blind Love

A little while ago I saw a video on my Facebook page. Its an advertisement for Coca Cola where 6 strangers are put in a dark room, and they get to know each other without seeing what they look like. I think almost everyone reading this judges people on their looks, whether they mean to or not. I wanted to see what it would be like to get to know someone, but without judging them on their looks. Of course, I called my boyfriend in (you must get sick of hearing about him!) We sat opposite each other and closed our eyes, and I asked him to tell me about himself.

He told me about his passions for reading, and animals, and he told me about his struggles with autism and ADHD. He’s trying to write a book. He’s going to University this year to study Psychology. He has a wonderful girlfriend he loves. All of this I already knew, but it was strange, after he’d been talking for a while I started to form a picture in my head of this man. His deep voice made me think he was tall, and strong, perhaps muscly? His love of books and phycology made me think he was dorky, perhaps he looked like a University professor with glasses and a suit. The way he spoke about his girlfriend made me think he was older, he just sounded so mature and he sounded like he honestly thought she was one of the most beautiful and incredible people he has ever met.

Firstly, I now know how my boyfriend talks about me to strangers. And I love it. I think how you speak about someone when they’re not around says a lot about your relationship with them, so it was nice to hear how lovingly he spoke about me.

Then, while my eyes were still closed, he asked me if I would still date him. Honestly, yes. If Kyle had introduced himself to me like this, and I couldn’t see what he looked like, I’d still go on a date with him. His personality was amazing, and I think this made me realise how great a person he truly is. The way he seemed so excited about his passions, and he just seemed so positive about everything. I think I fell in love with him a little bit more that day because I realised that looks were nothing in our relationship. Someday we’ll both be old, and wrinkly, and now I know that even then we’ll still be in love because I’m with someone who is so great to talk to it won’t matter what we look like.

If anyone reading this would like to do this, I definitely say go for it! And if you do, please let me know so I can see how you found it. Thank you for reading.

What is it like to be in love with someone who has autism?

20150620_161412[1]Wonderful. Challenging. Beautiful. Frustrating. But so worth it. My boyfriend, Kyle, and I have been dating for around a year and a half now, and he has been diagnosed with autism, ADHD, and dyslexia. I’m often asked if that makes a relationship difficult, and my honest answer is always yes. Of course it does. So why am I still with him? Well, he makes me happy for one. He is also an incredible person whose personality I love. My dad always said to me, if you’d be happy with your own child dating someone like your partner then you’re with the right one. Honestly, I would love my future children to date someone like Kyle.

However, our relationship faces struggles that some other couples might not face so in this post I’m going to list all the good points, and the bad, about dating someone with autism. Everyone with autism and ADHD are different and so this will be based on my own personal experiences, and I’d love to hear your thoughts on this. And before I start, I’d like to say that I’m not blaming my boyfriend for the things he does and I’m not judging him on these things- I understand that some habits he has make him more comfortable and I’m not putting him down in any way. I love him, but I want to give an honest view.

Bad News First

  • His view on right and wrong can be child-like. When my boyfriend gets upset or angry he can sometime resort to very child-like thinking. For example, while we were sleeping I took all of the blanket. He woke up and then decided to elbow me until I woke up, in his mind it was the only way he could think of to fix the problem, and if he couldn’t get to sleep why should I? To try and help we have a chat and we talk about what else he could have done, I do try and remain calm (even if it’s 4am!) because he doesn’t do it out of spite.
  • He obsesses over little things. He can’t eat baked beans unless he cooks them himself. Is he like that with any other food? Nope. Just baked beans. If his bus is a minute late he panics. He worries if he’s playing on his PlayStation too much, or if he’s reading too much, or if he’s on his laptop too much. But he doesn’t worry about the big things, like University or money. To deal with this I just get over it, he’s not affecting my life so it doesn’t bother me too much. Plus because of my anxiety I worry about everything enough for the both of us!
  • He struggles to read my emotions. Obvious clues, such as me crying or me laughing he can figure out my emotions. But sometimes if I’m just sitting on the sofa watching TV, he struggles to tell if I’m being quiet because I’m sad, angry, or if I’m just content. This can often lead to him asking me if I’m okay a lot, or asking me if I’m angry or upset at him. I’m not going to lie, this can get frustrating sometimes but it is sweet that he cares about me so much. So, to help with this I tell him outright if I’m angry or sad because it’s just easier for both of us. I think all couples should do this! It saves so much time because none of us are mind readers!
  • He finds it hard to put himself in others shoes. Kyle struggles to view the world from anyone else’s point of view. So he might do or say something without considering how that might make someone feel. Unfortunately my anxiety means that if he says something to me, I find it extremely hurtful and my brain often exaggerates it. As our relationship has gone on he has gotten a lot better at this, and I’ve learnt to let him explain what he really means and to talk to him if I find things upsetting.
  • He can’t process sarcasm. I am an extremely sarcastic person, but Kyle takes everything literally. This can make our conversations difficult, and can make for some awkward explanations.

But There Is Good News!

  • He can’t lie to me. Kyle just cannot lie. This means that if he tells me something I know he’s telling the truth, and I think this helps my anxiety a lot.
  • He’s very affectionate. Kyle’s ADHD means he’s very hyper and once he got to know me and trusted me he’s so sweet but very excitable. This means I get constant hand holding, hugs, and kisses which I love!
  • He knows so much. The amount of random information Kyle knows is astounding! I tutor a young boy, but he was struggling with History so I offered to do some lessons on it (although I know nothing about it) so I enlisted the help of Kyle who managed to teach me everything about castles, Medieval Times, and The Battle of Hastings. And my student got an A on his next exam 🙂
  • He’s excitable. When Kyle finds something he’s passionate about, he gets obsessed over it and it’s so cute. He gets very excited, and it’s so nice to see something simple making someone so happy.
  • It’s easy to tell how he feels. Some people struggle to read their partners emotions, but Kyle is very predictable. He has very specific behaviours for when he’s happy and another behaviour for when he’s sad. This means I don’t have to be a mind reader and I can help him out quickly.
  • He doesn’t judge. He bases his opinions of people solely on how they treat him and how they act. Kyle is one of the least judgmental people I know. It doesn’t matter if you are 10 or 110, male or female, black or white, gay or straight, Kyle will be friendly towards you and that’s such an amazing quality of his.
  • He is so positive. His personality is so upbeat. Although he has struggled he always has a positive outlook on life and it’s so nice to be with someone like that. He is so kind and sweet and he genuinely is a nice guy.
  • He just gets on with life. Never has Kyle complained about having autism. He knows he has it and he just carries on with life, there’s no moping around or feeling sorry for himself, and I love that about him.
  • He’s brave. His ADHD means he doesn’t fear dangerous situations. This means that I can send him to deal with big scary spiders, or loud noises in the night and he doesn’t even flinch! This means he’s Superman in my eyes!
  • He’s a good listener. If I have a problem I know I can go to him and talk about it, whatever it is. He’s also good at giving me advice, and putting my problems into perspective, and he helps motivate me 🙂

I wrote a list of so many more good points but I realised this post is so long already! I hope this post has given you a better insight into what it’s like to date someone who is autistic. No relationship is ever easy, and autism does make a relationship extra challenging. But there are so many reasons why Kyle is a wonderful boyfriend and no, I would never take away his autism because without it he wouldn’t be Kyle. I love him and I hope he never changes who he is. Thank you for reading!